Smart grid standard: US releases new facilities protocol

Smart grid standard for facilities
Smart grid standard: 201P aims to standardise interoperability between building control systems and appliances and the wider electrical power system

In the US, sustainable building technology society ASHRAE and the National Electrical Manufacturers Association (NEMA) this week released for public review a new smart grid standard for electricity consumers.

The ASHRAE/NEMA Standard 201P, Facility Smart Grid Information Model, aims to provide a common basis for electrical energy consumers to describe, manage and communicate about electrical energy consumptions and forecasts.

The smart grid standard is an object-oriented information model to enable appliances and control systems in homes, buildings and industrial facilities to respond to communication with the smart electrical grid, explained committee chair Steve Bushby.

Mr Bushby said: “Almost all electricity is consumed in a building of some kind – homes, retail establishments, offices, schools, factories, hospitals and the list goes on.

“Standard 201P attempts to capture the breadth and diversity of these consumers by using the term ‘facility.’ A facility is any kind of building or collection of buildings and all of the electrical loads or local generation sources contained within them or controlled by the facility owner.”

International smart grid standard

Bushby said 201P is being considered for adoption through the International Organization for Standardization.

The protocol also forms part of ASHRAE’s supporting efforts for the Smart Grid Interoperability Panel, a US private-public partnership initiated by the National Institute of Standards and Technology to speed development of interoperability and cyber security standards.

Domestically, 201P coordinates with the North American Energy Standards Board’s basic energy usage data model standard, known as Green Button, that facilitates consumer access to energy usage information for homes and commercial and industrial buildings.

Bushby said: “The effort to substantially modernize and transform electric grids around the world is an enormous undertaking that reflects both the size and importance of those grids.

“Viewed in its entirety, it is an intentional effort involving hundreds of organizations and companies and will impact billions of people.

“The standards infrastructure that will be needed to support this transformation may include over 100 standards by the time that is fully in place. This standard is one part of that infrastructure.”

Standard 201P, Facility Smart Grid Information Model is available for public review until 6 October, 2015.