e+ICT: energy + Information & Communication Technologies

The term Smart Grid has been in use since 1975. Most broadly, the term refers to applying Information and Communication Technologies (ICT) to the power grid. The grid is a vast, interconnected network for delivering electric power to consumers. The common element binding the electric “network” together is copper. But in a real sense the electric power system cannot really be described as a network. It is a collection of generating plants, transmission and distribution and indoor wires and plugs, with a vast array of electromechanical transformers, circuit breakers, meters, electric panels, appliances and other end-user devices that cannot communicate. A $200 cell phone has significantly more network intelligence than a distribution transformer or an electric service panel.

The Smart Grid is the convergence of energy and Information and Communications Technologies, or e + ICT.

About the Author: Raymond Kaiser

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