Two NEMA staff members, John Caskey from the Industry Operations and Eric Hsieh from Government Relations, participated in the Department of Energy’s Smart Grid Implementation Workshop. The objective of the workshop was to develop metrics for measuring progress toward the implementation of the Smart Grid. More than 140 experts from utilities, equipment manufacturers, state agencies, universities and national laboratories attended.

Teams of attendees worked to develop metrics for seven specific smart grid characteristics including:

  • Enable active participation by consumers
  • Accommodate all generation and storage options
  • Enable new products, services and markets
  • Provide power quality for the range of needs in a digital economy
  • Optimize asset utilization and operating efficiency
  • Anticipate and respond to system disturbances in a self-healing manner
  • Operate resiliency against physical and cyber attack and natural disasters

According to the summary report from the workshop, examples of potential metrics for the seven smart grid characteristics include:

  • Percentage of customers capable of receiving information from grid operators and the percentage of customers opting to make electrical use decisions based on that information
  • Percentage of distributed generation and storage devices that can controlled by the grid operator
  • Number of smart grid products for sale that have been certified for end-to-end interoperability
  • Percentage of grid assets (e.g. transmission and distribution equipment) that are monitored, controlled or automated

The next steps are to refine the metrics and develop methodologies for measuring progress toward smart grid implementation. The DOE will then use the metrics to define the research, development, demonstration, analysis and technology transfer activities it will undertake as authorized by Title XIII of the Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007. A fundamental conclusion of the workshop is that there is an urgent need to provide educational materials about Smart Grid that contains consistent definitions and concrete examples for state utility regulators, environmental groups and consumers.


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