Communication is a core component of any smart grid or AMI implementation. Depending on application use cases, geography, rural/urban areas, or existing infrastructure, however, a grid operator may choose PLC, mesh, or cellular communications. With an increasingly diverse and active consumer base that now includes prosumers, electric vehicle charging, renewables, and more, how can utilities ensure that all these segments are served without disrupting their AMI?
In the 1970s, it became urgent for companies to improve flow monitoring as Europe and the rest of the world were suffering from the explosion in oil and energy prices. Sensing the urgency for accurate energy measurement, Landis+Gyr introduced their very first ultrasonic meters 2WR2 which could be directly used for billing. Due to their accuracy, durability, low maintenance and robustness, these meters became the future of heat and cooling measurement. Today they are the foundation of our smart heat and water meters.
With the electrification of transportation and heating sectors, explosion of EV charging and a general rise in energy demand and prices, the UK energy network is stressed in numerous ways as we drive towards net zero targets. That is why we organized a symposium on Half hourly metering and Grid Management at our UK office in Manchester.
Bringing together industry colleagues and stakeholders from across the UK made for great discussions around the issues and challenges in grid management - from billing through to power quality management. With the shift from fossil-based to zero-carbon energy sources, grid operators are coming across completely new challenges - and our collective effort is needed in addressing these challenges, not just at the local metering level but all the way through the network.
Traditional electricity network management has been based on one single direction of the energy coming from large production units to the end-users. With the energy sector shifting from fossil-based to zero-carbon energy sources connected to medium- and low-voltage, grid operators come across completely new challenges. Moreover, with the electrification of transportation and heating sectors as well as the latest socioeconomic developments, energy demand and energy prices increase dramatically. In this new energy era commercial and industrial meters are called to serve a wider range of applications than energy billing.
Energy used to flow one way down the value chain. Power plants generated power, high-voltage lines transmitted it to your neighborhood substations, and wires from poles brought it home. All of this happened behind a meter, with consumers only ever engaging when using electricity or paying a utility bill. They knew nothing of how they got their energy let alone do anything about it. However, this is beginning to change.
Communication is a core component of any smart-grid or AMI implementation. Depending on application use cases, geography, rural/urban areas or existing infrastructure however, a grid operator may choose PLC, mesh or cellular communications. With an increasingly diverse and active consumer base that now includes prosumers, electric vehicle charging, renewables and more, how can utilities ensure that all these segments are served without disrupting their AMI?