A smart grid for the city of Rome
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This report, the first of a series of periodic publications, systematically gathers and disseminates information on the smart grid laboratories active in Europe and beyond. The underpinning survey developed by the JRC is a comprehensive attempt to get a complete overview of all the smart grid technologies operational at laboratory level.
As known, the drive towards sustainable, secure and competitive energy policies is bringing about deep changes in the way the power system is operated, designed and planned. Particularly, the increasing amount of renewable energy sources connected to the transmission and distribution networks, together with the emerging role of consumers in dispersed power production and electricity demand mitigation, are pushing towards a rethinking of the power system as a whole.
In this light, current operational, control and monitoring practices based on centralised architectures are being challenged by more decentralised approaches and solutions. Indeed, technological advances in ICT (Information Communication Technology) are expected to contribute significantly to these developments. The concept of Smart Grid, as an electricity network that can intelligently integrate the actions of all users connected to it - producers, consumers and those that do both (prosumers) - in order to efficiently deliver sustainable, economic and secure electricity supplies, is emerging naturally in the research and innovation domains and moving further beyond.
Assessing these challenges generally requires, as a first step, conducting a number of tests and experiments in dedicated research infrastructure and laboratories before moving to larger scale demonstrators. This report hence aims on the one hand at complementing and on the other hand at going deeper into the other JRC’s periodic publication - the “Smart Grids Projects Outlook 2014” - where the enormous number of smart grid R&D and demonstration projects developed in Europe are highlighted and evaluated.