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Abstract

This review covers the current state of “smart” grid research and demonstration projects. At present, smart elements are making their way into traditional electricity grid systems at every level, from transmission down to distribution. The vast size of the power grid makes the extension of digitally enabled electric infrastructure a question of cost. Drivers for this development are the growing security requirements and sustainability of supply in the face of rising demand and aging infrastructure. Information technology (IT) is one of the key elements of smart grids because it enables cooperation of distributed energy resources, local control, and globalized energy markets. Smart grids are expected to make our power system more resilient, “green,” and efficient; a challenge that the automotive industry could only manage by introducing digital controls in engines. We now witness the same development in electric energy systems. This article provides an introduction to the topic, a snapshot of current activities, and a general outlook on what still is needed.

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/content/journals/10.1146/annurev-environ-031312-102947
2013-10-17
2024-06-19
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  • Article Type: Review Article
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