Smart grid services for utilities

Knoxville, TN, U.S.A. — (METERING.COM) — April 25, 2007 – Arcadian Networks, EnerNex Corporation, GridAgents, Horizon Energy Group LLC and UTInnovation LLC, today announced a strategic services alliance, called GridNet NOW at GridWeek 2007. GridNet NOW will focus on the smart grid requirements of municipal and cooperative utilities. The new alliance offers a comprehensive, cost effective suite of services helping utilities plan, develop, implement and manage a successful path to electric transmission and distribution grid modernization.

The GridNet NOW services have been designed specifically to assist these utilities in modernizing their electric distribution networks, addressing a market largely ignored by the large information technology and business transformation consulting firms. These services include the following areas:

  • Mission-critical wireless broadband communications infrastructure for transmission and distribution automation, as well as, advanced metering.
  • Advanced metering strategies and implementations designed for needs defined by utilities.
  • Advanced monitoring and control schemes required by a move to a more intelligent grid.
  • Smart grid strategies and projects enabling improvements in reliability, asset utilization and penetration and integration of renewable resources.

"This is not just another alliance doing research, scoping and selling transmission and distribution system hardware," said Erich Gunther, a representative of GridNet Now. "We are focusing on ensuring that the smaller utilities can also realize the benefits of the next generation smart grid."

With 30 per cent of the consumers and greater than 50 per cent of the electric services across the nation, cooperative and municipal utilities have different challenges compared to the large investor-owned and public power companies. Rural cooperatives, state and municipal utilities face the greatest operational and management challenges due to an aging infrastructure and years of sub-standard capital investment in technology. GridNet NOW is focused on these specific challenges with solutions specifically designed for the municipal and cooperative utilities.

Each company in the GridNet NOW Alliance has contributed to leading smart grid projects across the country. Each of the founding firms has extensive systems and software experience and has participated in leading industry organizations such as GridWise, IntelliGrid and Galvin over the past two years. Project completions range from long-range smart grid strategy development, to use case development, to design and integration of advanced technologies to address a specific growing grid issue.
The GridNet NOW team provides a proven approach to determining the best fit of solutions, integrating key technologies (integrated mission-critical communications, advanced control methods, sensing and measurement, advanced grid components and improved interface and decision support) and developing the business case and plans supporting these initiatives. The GridNet NOW Alliance will expand to include other technology firms over the next year.