KIC InnoEnergy provides support for finalising and commercialising technological innovations that lead to new products and services.
The current electrical power system was built up over more than a 100 years. However, over the last few decades, the rapid deployment of renewable energy sources, the introduction of new market and regulatory structures and the increased volume and use of electricity have brought significant challenges in operation and control of the power system. These challenges have so far been addressed by a number of initiatives, but further significant developments are required in order to secure system stability, reliability and security.
Such circumstances require further technological development to upgrade the current transmission and distribution system. This can be achieved by implementing new smart grid technologies and providing improved system support for advancements in the grid. It is anticipated that without smart grid technologies, the electrical power system would become less stable and disruption in the supply may occur much more frequently.
To satisfy both the increasing demand for energy and the reduction of CO2 emissions, it is of vital importance to build an electric system that can handle such challenges in a sustainable, reliable and economic way. When information and communication technologies are deployed in large scale, the number of applications that will be used in the smart grid will grow quickly. Advantages will include enhanced cyber-security, increased control over the intermittent sources of electricity like wind and solar power and even integrating electric vehicles into the grid.
The smart grid has the potential to provide enhanced reliability and quality of power supply, while allowing greater levels of efficiency in power transmission and distribution. It will also be capable of integrating sustainable energy sources into power networks without compromising the balance between consumption and supply. This is why smart grids will represent an essential piece of the future energy puzzle.