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IEC setting global standards for Smart Grid


July 19, 2009
By Anthony Capkun

The International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC) is spearheading a global initiative to support new smart electric power grids around the world with common technical standards that ensure interoperability, security and energy savings.

IEC recently convened an event that, it claims, featured the world’s
leading experts on smart grid technology. The group met at a workshop
in Paris, France (hosted by IEC member, UTE, and the EDF Group
R&D). The experts agreed on a roadmap to ensure interoperability of
smart grid systems.

Commenting on the outcome of the meeting, Frank Kitzantides—IEC
vice-president and former vice-president of the National Electrical
Manufacturers’ Association (NEMA)—said: “I am delighted that IEC has
taken charge of global interoperability in setting international
standards for the smart grid. This will be of tremendous benefit, not
only to industries dedicated to catalyzing technology and business
progress worldwide, but also to the end-user who is searching for ways
to use electrical energy in a more meaningful manner”.

The meeting brought together experts from the 13 nations that
constitute the group: Brazil, Canada, China, France, Germany, Italy,
Japan, Republic of Korea, Netherlands, Switzerland, Sweden, U.K. and
the U.S. The experts specialized in electrical generation,
distribution, transmission, consumption and measurement.

The IEC group of experts has defined smart grid as follows:

Smart grid is the concept of modernizing the electric grid. the smart
grid is integrating the electrical and information technologies
in-between any point of generation and any point of consumption.

The interoperability is a new challenge to integrate large numbers of
complex technology ‘bricks’ across the board. As part of the initial
framework for smart grid, the group designated 19 technical committees
whose existing international standards play a role in the smart grid
structure.

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