Governments and companies are increasingly shifting to smart grids, electrical grids that use digital information and communications technology to gather and act on information.
Unlike the traditional electrical grid, the smart grid is a modernized version and has several benefits including optimizing the conservation and delivery of power. The smart grid promises to increase the efficiency of today’s system by around 9% by 2030, saving more than 400 billion kilowatt-hours each year.
The global overall investments in smart grids equal to $590.4 billion up to this year, according to a report by Booz Allen Hamilton. The annual growth rate in investments in smart grids in the Middle East is 8%.
Benefits of Smart Grids:
· Enabling two-way communication between utilities and consumers. This means controlling your own electricity bill by monitoring and adjusting your energy use through smart meters at home.
· Improvements in security creates a resilient grid and reduces possibility of external attacks whether from cyber attacks or natural disasters
· Enables new markets according to consumer choices such as green power products and efficient electricity services
· Constantly detects, monitors and responds to grid components. Rather than have a utility worker drive to the location of the problem, smart grid systems convert problems into retrievable information digitally to save time.
· Provides power quality for the digital economy
· Increased options for storage making for more efficient and cleaner power production
· Operates at minimum cost and higher efficiency rather than relying on costly power plants that are on constant standby.
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14 June 2017