Pacific Northwest smart grid demonstration project begins two-year data collection period
31 October 2012
A project designed to make electric grids more reliable and efficient, and showcased last week at the University of Washington is one of 11 projects across five Northwest states that comprise the Pacific Northwest smart grid demonstration project, a public-private demonstration launched in February 2010.
Sponsored by the Department of Energy's office of electricity delivery and energy reliability, and co-funded by the participating utilities, the demonstration is beginning a two-year period of collecting energy use data.
The 11 participating utilities will evaluate the benefits of smart grid technologies locally - in their respective cities - and at the regional level. The project team will look at how a smarter grid can help deliver electricity more efficiently to avoid congestion in the transmission system and how more wind power can be used.
The project's data collection and analysis efforts are expected to provide an unprecedented view into how smart grid concepts can provide regional benefits while improving consumer choice and reliability locally.
"The two-way information exchange in the Pacific Northwest smart grid demonstration project allows grid operators to make the existing electric grid more efficient - while also exploring how using other technologies, such as energy storage devices, smart appliances and wind power, can bolster the reliability of our system," said Carl Imhoff, electricity infrastructure market sector manager at Battelle in Richland.
Battelle is leading the demonstration project for the DOE's office of electricity delivery and energy reliability.