Smart grids, what they are and why they are considered the future

The smart grids they are considered the natural evolution of the current electricity system, a technology created to fulfill the new energy needs of consumers and, of course, to respond effectively to digitization of electricity sector.

The “traditional” model of energy transmission and distribution is a tree model, with large power plants that unidirectionally spread the energy produced towards consumers. With smart grids, however, the model becomes “reticular” and is built on small systems located near the places where the energy itself is consumed and which can regulate the flow of energy based on the real ones consumer needs, optimizing performance e reducing costs and emissions.

An extremely efficient system, therefore, that can lead to great benefits and a real revolution in the sector. Let’s find out more about it.

What are smart grids

Smart Grids

The term smart grids refers to one “intelligent” electricity grid which, through ICT (Information and Communication Technologies)provides all the information regarding energy needs in real time, with the possibility of manage the power supply in detail making distribution more efficient and avoiding any infrastructure malfunction.

A smart grid represents the natural evolution of the old idea of ​​an electricity grid which is transformed into an intelligent system, ready to efficiently satisfy the needs of users

This system, on the one hand, helps the manager to know consumption in detail and the energy requirements of each user (with the possibility of intervene quickly with interventions and repairs) and on the other allows the consumer to save on your billincreasing the demand for energy at those times when the tariffs are most advantageous.

In this sense, thanks to the efficiency of the entire infrastructure, a reduction of emissionswith all the “excess” energy being distributed as needed or stored inside special batteries.

The main advantages

Electric energy

As already mentioned in the previous paragraphs, smart grids can bring many advantages to the electricity sector optimizing energy distribution and guaranteeing all users the best possible service.

Therefore, a smart network if possible constantly monitor the status of the infrastructure manages, first of all, to regulate the supply in detail of electricity based on the needs of the various users. This not only leads to better efficiency but also allows you to avoid overloads and blackouts sudden events which, especially in summer with the use of air conditioners and other domestic cooling devices, can interrupt the regular supply of electricity.

Furthermore, an intelligent grid is also capable of ensure better maintenance to the entire infrastructure, quickly detecting any damage or malfunctions solving them automatically or by calling the maintenance service to repair the fault as soon as possible. In this sense, such technology also allows you to minimize management and maintenance coststhanks precisely to this continuous monitoring and predictive maintenance operations.

A smart grid is an efficient system, which reduces waste and costs on the bill, guaranteeing a 100% functional and always operational service

This system is also compatible with different technologiesincluded which renewable have now become fundamental for the national electricity system, making all the various options coexist in the best possible way and in the name of efficiency.

Making the entire electrical system work properly and they also reduce waste and with them CO2 emissions. Furthermore, this system also encourages the methods of energy production from renewable sources (solar panelswind turbines, etc.) with more careful management and the possibility of storing excess energy in special batteries.

All these benefits obviously also lead to significant economic benefits: targeted energy extraction avoid waste and guarantees a more flexible service and modulated based on the real needs of consumers (Demand Response) with the possibility, for example, of organizing one’s consumption in the time slots or periods in which the energy price is most convenient.

An excellent solution, in short, for modulate your energy consumption and the use of electricity, balancing needs over the twenty-four hour period.

Smart grids the first step for smart cities

smart city

The advent of smart grids has led in rapid succession to the arrival of lots of “smart” technologies related to housing (smart home) and to mobility.

And at the basis of this evolution we find intelligent energy management which allows the development of increasingly sophisticated infrastructures that guarantee performance, efficiency, low environmental impact it’s a general improvement of life.

With the consumer who is placed at the center of everythingtherefore, the ideas of smart home are developing in parallel with it hyper-connected home with many intelligent devices that can be controlled remotely and developed to guarantee full autonomy.

A large part of the home automation sector is already experiencing a flourishing period with dozens of smart appliances that crowd our homes, ready to simplify users’ lives. And the future will be increasingly oriented in this direction, with futuristic homes, aimed at energy efficiency and which allow the user to manage any detail, simply by taking their smartphone.

Smart grids are the first step towards the creation of smart cities, intelligent cities on a human scale, hyper-connected and oriented towards environmental sustainability

The other revolution concerns the intelligent mobility with the possibility of integrating an energy plan of this kind that could involve the whole city and, specifically, the public transport completely powered by this energy and which will no longer need to rely on fossil fuels.

According to experts, the the date set for the change is 2030, how much cities will be cleaner and more sustainable, hyper-connected and certainly more liveable. An ambitious plan, which may seem light years away but which, in fact, with the development and diffusion of smart grids becomes more within reach every day.

Obviously the idea of ​​one smart city it is still in its embryonic stage and, although many metropolises are reimagining themselves in this sense, the road is still long, especially for Europe which is starting to take its first steps in this sector.

There certainly is a need for one joint effort between governments, service providers (electricity, connections etc) and of course citizens who will have to be personally ready to embrace this change. But it’s probably only a matter of time and, given the proliferation of so much technology, the 2030 goal doesn’t seem so remote after all.

However, we must not forget investments and financing in the sector which are the first step towards the realization of this project, just as it is fundamental to create an efficient telecommunications infrastructurea discussion in the making thank you to the advent of 5G and essential to lay the foundations for smart cities and ensure that the entire system can communicate efficiently.

To find out more: Electricity, new technologies in the name of sustainability and energy saving

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