Utilities Worry Over the Communications Part of 'Smart' Grid

"The smart grid of the future will require new rivers of data flowing between utilities and customers. But who will carry the data, and how will it be channeled?

The Obama administration's release of its National Broadband Plan in March has framed a debate over the issue between two strong, politically wired industries -- the telecommunications/Internet sector and electric utilities.

Smart grid data traffic will grow steadily over the next decade, displaying households' hourly power usage and prices, transmitting control signals from utilities to smart appliances, enabling plug-in hybrid electric vehicles to recharge or return electricity to the grid, and all of it surrounded by a cyber-security envelope, experts agree.

But will the network for this information flow be the open Internet or the traditional private communications networks designed and run by utilities?"

Peter Behr reports for ClimateWire May 25, 2010.

See Also:

"Texas Makes a New 'Map' to Decipher the Grid's Growing Complexities" (ClimateWire)

Thursday, May 27, 2010