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Energy Efficient HVAC Systems Will Surpass $33 Billion in Annual Revenue by ... - DailyFinance

Energy Efficient HVAC Systems Will Surpass $33 Billion in Annual Revenue by ... - DailyFinance | Energy Management | Scoop.it
Energy Efficient HVAC Systems Will Surpass $33 Billion in Annual Revenue by ...
DailyFinance
Thus, HVAC energy consumption in commercial buildings is a key contributor to total global energy consumption.

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SIA pulls plug on fab capacity report - EE Times

SIA pulls plug on fab capacity report - EE Times | Energy Management | Scoop.it
EE TimesSIA pulls plug on fab capacity reportEE TimesSAN FRANCISCO—The Semiconductor Industry Association (SIA) said Wednesday (Feb.

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Blackout 10 years on: How 'smart grids' help blackout-proof the power game | CBC News

Blackout 10 years on: How 'smart grids' help blackout-proof the power game | CBC News | Energy Management | Scoop.it

Ten years ago today, the Eastern seaboard of the United States and Canada went black in a colossal power outage that affected 50 million people.

 

In the decade since, power producers across Canada, and particularly in Ontario, have explored ways to not only make the electrical grid more reliable but transform the way we consume power in the future.

 

Experts say that before too long it's conceivable that public utilities will turn on our appliances for us and we'll be using our electric cars to power our homes, like giant batteries, should an outage occur.

 

"Smart grids have accelerated as a concept as computing technology has become cheaper and telecommunications technology has become cheaper," says Alex Bettencourt, managing director of Smart Grid Canada, a non-profit that promotes modern and efficient power generation. "Customers' expectations are also rising."

 

The smart grid refers to an electricity system that collects real-time data on supply and demand to make the entire grid more efficient and less prone to failure.

 

In capturing this data, utilities are also better able to integrate renewable sources such as wind and solar into the energy mix, and even store excess power.

 

Many jurisdictions currently have smart meters, which provide utilities with up-to-the-minute information on energy use in homes and businesses.

 

A more recent innovation is the smart thermostat, such as those offered through Ontario's Peaksaver Plus plan.

 

By signing up for the program, customers give their local utility permission to adjust the temperature in their homes by one or two degrees in order to offset demand on the system.

 

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Massachusetts Takes A Major Step Forward In Smart Grid Technology | ThinkProgress.org

Massachusetts Takes A Major Step Forward In Smart Grid Technology | ThinkProgress.org | Energy Management | Scoop.it

At the end of December, the Massachusetts’ Department of Public Utilities (DPU) issued an order that requires large energy providers to submit a ten-year grid modernization plan (GMP) by mid-2014.

 

The plan will require investing in advanced metering functionality that enhances communication between the utility companies and customers, and that is meant to increase efficiency and lead to energy and cost savings. According to a statement issued by Governor Deval Patrick’s office, “the necessary infrastructure includes smart meters, communications networks and new data management systems to give customers greater choice about their energy use and real-time information to enable the utilities to respond better to storms.”

 

 

“With this Order, we require the electric utilities to adopt a new business model that is more forward thinking,” DPU Commissioner David Cash said in the statement. “It encourages the continued expansion of clean energy technologies like solar, wind, storage and electric vehicles.”

 

In the order, the working group identified four broad objectives: reduce the effect of outages, optimize demand (which includes reducing system and customer costs), integrate distributed resources, and improve workforce and asset management.

 

Advanced metering functionality plays a major role in all of these objectives, as the order states, because “advanced metering functionality is a basic technology platform for grid modernization that must be in place before all of the benefits of grid modernization can be fully realized.”

 

Other added benefits of the upgraded system, according to the order, include “automated outage and restoration notification [and] two-way communication between customers and the electric distribution company.” With a customer’s permission, the technology will enable “communication with and control of appliances,” along with “remote connection and disconnection of a customer’s electric service, [and] measurement of customers’ power quality and voltage.”

 

Investor-owned utilities serve about three million, or 88 percent, of Massachusetts’ electricity customers, of which half are from the state’s two biggest utilities, NSTAR and National Grid. As part of the program, in an effort to promote transparency and fairness towards consumers, all energy investments relating to the state’s utilities and energy grid must first be authorized by state officials.

 

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IL: ComEd 'Smart Grid' Upgrades Kicking Off in Uptown Chicago in 2014 | DNAinfo.com

IL: ComEd 'Smart Grid' Upgrades Kicking Off in Uptown Chicago in 2014 | DNAinfo.com | Energy Management | Scoop.it

"Smart Grid" crews are in Uptown Chicago upgrading power grid infrastructure as part of a $2.6 billion modernization effort to reduce power outages and help manage energy usage statewide.

 

Smart Grid technology depends on "Smart Meters" that use a wireless link with ComEd to provide customers hourly data on energy usage, alert ComEd when outages occur and help identify the cause of outages so power can be restored faster.

 

The utility company said it plans to install 4 million smart meters in northern Illinois, and the initiative will reduce power outages by 700,000 a year while saving customers about $100 million in outage-related costs, according to ComEd.

 

The work being done now in Uptown includes other upgrades and repairs in advance of the installation of Smart Meters — which is scheduled to kick off on the North Side in 2016, according to ComEd spokesman John Schoen. Schoen said the meters had been installed in the western suburbs and would be installed on the South Side this year.

 

In 2014, ComEd plans to install 25 distribution automation devices on power poles in Uptown, which Schoen said would benefit about 42,000 people. The devices, one piece of the Smart Grid puzzle, automatically isolate power problems and reroutes power to restore energy, according to ComEd.

 

"In the past, lets say a car ran into a pole and knocked it down — it might knock out power to the entire neighborhood," Schoen explained. "But with distribution automation, if something like that happened, the system knows how to reroute power around the trouble areas, so maybe folks in that immediate area are affected but other people are not."

 

Schoen said ComEd has assessed more than 100 manholes in Uptown in the last year, with crews replacing aging cables and making other repairs. A pair of ComEd trucks were parked Monday at North Sheridan Road and West Cullom Avenue, where a crew member worked in a manhole.

 

Upgrading the city's power grid is long overdue, according to Jim Chilsen, a spokesman for the Citizens Utility Board. 

 

"Today's power grid is wasteful, it's unreliable and extremely expensive for consumers," Chilsen said.  "Our current power grid is using technology that's about 100 years old."

 

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Four reasons why your business needs a smart meter

Four reasons why your business needs a smart meter | Energy Management | Scoop.it
Blog home › Energy Efficiency ›Four reasons why your business needs a smart meter
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You might have heard about smart meters and the fact that they are helping businesses take control of their energy costs.
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ITU approves new worldwide smart grid standards | Enterprise ...

ITU approves new worldwide smart grid standards | Enterprise ... | Energy Management | Scoop.it

The International Telecommunications Union (ITU) said that its standards for smart grids have been approved and now available for download.

 

The new standards -- Recommendations ITU-T G.9955 and G.9956 -- contain the physical layer (PHY) and the data link layer (DLL) specifications, respectively, for NB-PLC transceivers based on OFDM (orthogonal frequency-division multiplexing).

 

The specifications define technologies that support indoor and outdoor communications over direct current and alternating current power lines (including low and medium voltage lines), through transformer communications, for both urban and long distance rural communications and at frequencies below 500 kHz.

 

These standards are envisioned to enable cost-effective smart grid applications such as distribution automation, diagnostic and fault location, smart metering, demand response, energy management, smart appliances, grid-to-home communications and advanced recharging systems for electric vehicles.

 

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Chart of the day: top 15 states leading U.S. smart grid deployment | SmartPlanet.com

Chart of the day: top 15 states leading U.S. smart grid deployment | SmartPlanet.com | Energy Management | Scoop.it

California and Texas lead the U.S. in efforts to modernize their electrical grids with smart grid technologies, according to a newly developed index that evaluates and ranks states.

 

The Grid Modernization Index, created by GridWise Alliance and Smart Grid Policy Center, evaluates the progress of state grid modernization efforts in three categories: policy, customer engagement and grid operations. California and Texas, which tied for the highest overall score, are far ahead of other top-ranked states, such as Maryland, Delaware, Pennsylvania and Arizona.

 

The upshot? There’s not one perfect approach when it comes to modernizing the grid. Take Texas and California. The two top-ranking states tied in all three categories. And yet, California and Texas took different approaches.

 

For instance, California regulates it energy market and has one of the most ambitious renewable portfolio standards in America. Texas also an RPS, although it should be noted that legislators introduced a bill to eliminate the mandate.

 

Texas has relied more on its deregulated energy market to spur the modernization of its grid. The competitive and deregulated markets allow retail power providers to use assets like smart meter deployments to increase customer pricing programs and engagement efforts, Becky Harrison, CEO of the GridWise Alliance said in a prebriefing reported by Greentech Media. That hasn’t happened as quickly in California.

 

Other findings in the 2013 GMI report:

 

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Massachusetts Makes Smart Grid Mandatory | Greentech Media

Massachusetts Makes Smart Grid Mandatory | Greentech Media | Energy Management | Scoop.it

Massachusetts has joined a growing list of states demanding that its investor-owned utilities invest in the smart grid -- and find new models for how those investments should be valued. Consider it the latest move in a state-by-state reconfiguration of utility business models, aimed at creating new rules for sharing the costs and benefits of grid modernization between utility shareholders and customers.

 

Monday’s order (PDF) from the state’s Department of Public Utilities will require the state’s big utilities to submit a ten-year grid modernization plan (GMP) in the next six months. Advanced metering will be required as part of that plan -- a significant development in a state which has seen almost no smart meters deployed to date.

 

These upcoming smart meter plans will need to include technology and business cases, not just for core automated meter reading functions, but for a range of additional features like outage detection and restoration, smart appliance communication and control capability, and support of power quality and conservation voltage reduction.

 

The plans also must include a request for pre-authorization of investments, along with “a mechanism to allow for more timely cost recovery than is typically available” under state regulations. That’s where the state’s proposal for coming up with a new way to measure the costs and benefits of these deployments comes in.

 

Massachusetts has about 3.4 million electricity customers, all but about 400,000 of which are served by an investor-owned utility. Of those, nearly half are customers of the state’s two biggest utilities -- NSTAR, which serves much of the greater Boston area and Southeastern Massachusetts, and National Grid (NGG), which serves broad swaths of the state from the coast to the western border.

 

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Smart meter deployments to double market revenue of wireless modules | MuniWireless

Smart meter deployments to double market revenue of wireless modules | MuniWireless | Energy Management | Scoop.it

An increase in smart meter deployments will see the global market for wireless communication modules approximately double in value over the coming years, jumping from $532m in 2012 to $1.3 billion in 2020, at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 12 percent, according to a new report from research and consulting firm GlobalData.

 

The company’s latest report states that North America, currently the dominant player in the market for global wireless communication modules for smart meters, will be a key driver behind the leap, with its own market revenue expected to climb steadily from $379m in 2012 to $433.7m in 2020.

 

Europe will also continue to account for a considerable share of the global market, thanks to a significant number of pilot-scale projects getting underway across the region. The uptake of wireless communication modules in the UK, Denmark and Ireland in particular looks promising, according to GlobalData, and these countries are predicted to occupy an even larger share of Europe’s wireless smart meter communication market by the end of 2020.

 

Cellular and Radio Frequency (RF) communication modules are the two key technologies used in smart meters for two-way data transmission. RF modules account for an 85 percent share of the North American market, thanks to their low cost, high bandwidth and efficient performance in industrial areas.

 

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Public Carrier Networks for Smart Grids | SmartGridObserver.com

Public Carrier Networks for Smart Grids | SmartGridObserver.com | Energy Management | Scoop.it

Smart grid infrastructure is reliant upon the underlying communications technology in order to become smart. It is the communications technology that allows the grid to become intelligent, adaptive, and integrated between the transmission, distribution, and generation of energy. There are a variety of communications technologies that provide two-way communications between the various nodes in a smart grid network and the utility itself. These include wired solutions, like power line communications (PLC), fiber, or copper leased line networks, and wireless solutions, like cellular, Wi-Fi, microwave, and radio frequency (RF) mesh. Both wired and wireless communications can be run either as a private network or as part of an existing public communications network.

Traditionally, most utilities have preferred to use private networks, particularly in North America, to run their smart grids. However, of late there has been a resurgence of interest in public cellular networks as a viable option to run smart grids. In regions like Europe and (to some extent) the United States, public cellular networks have been used to backhaul data from concentrator nodes, which often employ PLC or mesh communications for the last mile. Yet, connecting the smart meter endpoints directly over a public cellular network - without the need for concentrator nodes - is where substantial growth potential lies. According to Navigant Research, this shift to public carrier networks is not going to happen overnight, though. The market brings a number of challenges along with the opportunities that it presents:

 

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Via Chuck Sherwood, Senior Associate, TeleDimensions, Inc
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