What is it?
A smart grid is a network based on technology that allows for providing consumers with electricity through two-way digital communication. It was originally intended to solve issues of traditional electrical grids by employing smart net meters. Consequently, smart grids enable monitoring, analysis, control, and communication in the supply chain.
How does it work?
Introduced as an extended form of analog technology, smart grid devices let users, operators, and automated devices rapidly react to changes in smart grid condition systems. Smart grid systems are designed for monitoring electricity consumption at different locations. They are additionally combined with energy management software. This integration makes it possible to estimate energy consumption within a certain enterprise and the corresponding expenses.
Major functionalities of smart grid systems include the following:
- Load handling, e.g., suggesting minimization of energy consumption if necessary.
- Demand response support such as using low-priority devices to cut bills if rates drop.
- Decentralizing power generation for users to produce onsite power in any preferred way.
Where is it applied?
Common applications of smart grid technology embrace enterprises, retail stores, hospitals, universities, and multinational corporations.
Benefits of smart grids
Firstly, smart grids maximize the transparency and reliability of the energy supply chain, ensure continued power supply, facilitate energy independence, and improve emergency resilience.
Secondly, they possess self-repairing capabilities and withstand power leakages. Lastly, the advantages of smart grids encompass decreased energy waste and assistance in managing renewable energy sources.
Challenges of smart grids
A typical issue associated with smart grids is vulnerability to cyber-attacks, as this technology necessitates elaborate communication networks due to the huge amounts of data involved.
Besides, route instability results in packet loss when data packets do not arrive at their destination. It slows down and disrupts the network’s operation as well as leads to connectivity loss.