Introduction to Smart Grid

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Industrial Communications Handbook

By Mick Crabtree

Chapter 1: Introduction to Smart Grid



From a global perspective, the Smart Grid can be understood as a range of technologies that contributes to a more efficient and more reliable power distribution system. From its inception, the power distribution grid was created as a two-way simplex service: power flowing from the generating station to the consumer; and one-way communication of the energy consumed (often by phone or mail) sent back to the provider.

The primary function of a power supply provider is to produce, distribute, and deliver energy to the end user. The ongoing goal of the provider is to achieve those tasks through a fully integrated, automated and remotely supervised system that requires minimal human intervention.

At its basic level, therefore, the primary role of a Smart Grid could be seen as a system for providing an automated demand response strategy that equalises load distribution – flattening demand spikes and thus eliminating the cost of adding reserve generation.