Silver Spring Networks, Inc., a networking platform and solutions provider for smart energy networks, announced a teaming agreement with Smarter Grid Solutions, an European vendor of Distributed Energy Resources (DER) integration solutions. Customers will be able to leverage a solution that integrates Smarter Grid Solutions’ autonomous grid management technology with Silver Spring’s proven IPv6 smart grid networking platform. Together, this enables electrical grid operators to proactively manage renewable energy sources and grid devices. The innovative approach provides effective monitoring and management of grid constraints and improves the overall reliability and efficiency of the grid.
The joint solution builds on Silver Spring and Smarter Grid Solutions’ existing engagement at the successful Flexible Plug and Play project, delivered to client UK Power Networks, the distribution network operator for London, and the South East and the East of England. In the Flexible Plug and Play (FPP) project, Silver Spring’s networking technology connects an array of distribution equipment across a deployment of intermittent wind and solar resources in Cambridgeshire, UK. This deployment also successfully demonstrated the use of the IEC 61850 protocol across a radio mesh field area network.
At the core of the FPP project, Smarter Grid Solutions’ Active Network Management technology monitors the electricity grid using data provided by Silver Spring’s field area network. The system autonomously calculates the available capacity of the grid and issues real-time control instructions to participating DERs. The project has delivered significant savings to UK Power Networks on the capital expenditures otherwise required to reinforce the project area.
“Utilities have enormous challenges in maintaining reliability while integrating new sources of generation using traditional network reinforcement and reliability schemes,” said Eric Dresselhuys, Executive Vice President of Global Development, Silver Spring Networks. “By offering this proven solution to our customers, Silver Spring and Smarter Grid Solutions are enabling utilities, and ultimately the end consumer, to save money and enjoy the benefits of a cleaner, more reliable and more efficient energy grid.”
“In the course of delivering several successful projects, we have found that many utilities were making long-term grid reliability decisions without fully integrating their strategy for the underlying communications fabric,” said Gerry Docherty, Chief Executive, Smarter Grid Solutions. “In order to run the next generation of distributed, intelligent applications, we need reliable, responsive communications infrastructure that doesn't risk the fundamental utility business case. Silver Spring’s proven IPv6 networking platform makes them the ideal partner to ensure these criteria are met.”
To commemorate the new Silver Spring and Smarter Grid Solutions teaming agreement, the Rt Hon Alex Salmond MSP, First Minister of Scotland, joined executives from both companies at a signing ceremony that also celebrated the official opening of Smarter Grid Solutions’ North American headquarters in New York City.