What is a smart grid?

A smart grid is a network that collects and transmits power consumption data in real-time in order to analyse and react to local changes in usage. The data collected enables utilities operators to make forecasts on things like power delivery, renewable energy and consumption.

Smart grid technology delivers greener, more reliable energy (among other benefits), making it the energy technology not just for the future, but for today.

 

Why IP for the Smart Grid?

Internet Protocol (IP) is the principal communications method for transmitting data across networks. IP is the communications foundation that was developed for helping data networks ‘talk’ to each other, designed with flexibility in mind.

Smart grid deployments need the kind of transparent interconnection that IP provides to connect the various types of equipment and sensors that will be deployed to make the grid “smart”. IP-based communication delivers reliability, network flexibility and security to pave the way for future Smart Grids. In terms of reliability, IP is the best communication protocol for this as it has more tools than any other to help maintain a network.

IP can transmit information over any link layer network, including Radio, Wireless and Ethernet. This is the flexibility aspect that is crucial for smart grids to connect with multiple, very different networks. Flexibility is very important for smart grid longevity, meaning that IP will be able to support changing systems over the years to come.

Although IP was originally designed to be an open network, of all the protocols, it has the most tools for securing data. This makes IP perfect for smart grids, where sensitive data of customers will be handled constantly, and will need to be confidential. IP ensures that data is sent to the correct destination all while blocking any malicious activity.

 

Find out more

MMX is an experienced systems integrator, highly proficient in the design, build and management of smart grids for customers in utilities. We integrate existing technologies with newer IP-enabled systems to form a complimentary hybrid solution to support our clients’ current and future needs.

To find out how MMX can help with your smart grid requirements, get in touch with our team today.