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Click to downloadSGT PDF issue dated April 24, 2015

Current Issue
DELOITTE: Renewables boom fostered by smart grid
April 24, 2015 -- 10% renewables threshold starts looking old fashioned: Getting the balance between renewables integration and power demand right presents challenges to utilities and the renewables sector -- and the merger and acquisition activity in them, consultancy Deloitte said . . . keep reading

Eguana, LG Chem to offer AC battery storage for solar
April 24, 2015 -- Eguana Technologies and LG Chem are developing an AC battery that functions as a full energy storage system, the firms told the press this week. Lithim-ion battery maker LG Chem and power control and conversion tech firm Eguana will work on the AC Battery under a multi-year . . . keep reading

Silver Spring canopy network heads to Mexico City
April 24, 2015 -- Mexico's Comisión Federal de Electricidad (CFE) chose Silver Spring Networks to deploy a "canopy" network for AMI and "loss reduction projects on distribution" in Mexico City's Central District, Silver Spring told the press yesterday. The US firm will work with Tecnologías . . . keep reading

1 story in 20 seconds
April 24, 2015 -- PingThings wins funds from GE, Frost Data . . . keep reading

Earlier stories...

The latest headlines on the topics we cover...

Exclusives
Green Charge learns how to make storage attractive
April 23, 2015 -- EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEW -- Technology finds ripe market as demand charges grow: After Green Charge Networks got off the ground in 2009, it used $12 million in DOE funding for a smart grid demo project with Consolidated Edison (Con Edison) to build a distributed storage . . . keep reading

More stories on this topic...
AMI - advanced metering
Silver Spring canopy network heads to Mexico City
April 24, 2015 -- Mexico's Comisión Federal de Electricidad (CFE) chose Silver Spring Networks to deploy a "canopy" network for AMI and "loss reduction projects on distribution" in Mexico City's Central District, Silver Spring told the press yesterday. The US firm will work with Tecnologías . . . keep reading

More stories on this topic...
Benefits of smart grid
DELOITTE: Renewables boom fostered by smart grid
April 24, 2015 -- 10% renewables threshold starts looking old fashioned: Getting the balance between renewables integration and power demand right presents challenges to utilities and the renewables sector -- and the merger and acquisition activity in them, consultancy Deloitte said . . . keep reading

More stories on this topic...
Briefs
1 story in 20 seconds
April 24, 2015 -- PingThings wins funds from GE, Frost Data . . . keep reading

More stories on this topic...
Building Automation
Venstar offers DR-ready smart C&I thermostats with WiFi
March 17, 2015 -- Venstar introduced its ColorTouch line of smart thermostats, the firm told the press last week. The line includes the WiFi-enabled T8850 and T8900 models, which can connect directly to the grid. The thermostats come programmed with automated DR software . . . keep reading

More stories on this topic...
Business & finance
MERCOM: Smart grid deals in Q1 tripled those in Q4
April 21, 2015 -- VC funding in the smart grid industry in Q1 of this year came to $185 million in 15 deals, compared with $59 million in 13 deals in the final quarter of last year, Mercom Capital Group told the press yesterday. Within smart grid, communication tech firms received the most . . . keep reading

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Consultancies
DNV GL Energy report calls for old cities to get wired
April 3, 2015 -- Old cities need to get wired to accommodate "extra devices, such as the smart meters and smart appliances that are critical for demand response," DNV GL Energy CEO David Walker said in a report titled "World Energy Focus," that the World Energy Council publicized today. Smart meters, micro-grids, DG and plug-in cars are no-brainers in new . . . keep reading

More stories on this topic...
Consumer apps & services
Screaming Power wants to build better utility apps
March 9, 2015 -- CEO envisions utilities, customers both benefiting: Screaming Power is drawing to a close the yearlong conversation it had with a group of utility executives to look at mobility from the utility point of view, CEO Gary Michor told us this week. The Toronto-based firm . . . keep reading

More stories on this topic...
Corrections & clarifications
CORRECTIONS
April 17, 2015 -- The headline and first two paragraphs of a story we published yesterday . . . keep reading

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Cost recovery
ComEd proposes lower delivery rate, seeks comments
April 16, 2015 -- Commonwealth Edison (ComEd) filed its annual delivery service formula rate request that would result in a decrease of about $1 on the average monthly residential bill starting next year, the utility told the press yesterday. If request goes through as is, the utility would cut . . . keep reading

More stories on this topic...
Customers & advocacy
National Black Chamber of Commerce pans some net metering
April 2, 2015 -- The National Black Chamber of Commerce (NBCC) views as unfair the net metering programs in Louisiana and other states that pay customers more than the market rate for solar, the group told the press this week. The recent study from the Louisiana PSC confirmed the unequal benefits of the state's net-metering program, NBCC President Harry . . . keep reading

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Cybersecurity
Security experts describe lurking cyber vulnerabilities
April 21, 2015 -- EXCLUSIVE -- Courtesy connections such as kiosks pose real risks: Within utilities, internet connections for employees to check email and customers to pay bills and monitor energy use pose cybersecurity vulnerabilities, Bryan Sartin, director of the "research . . . keep reading

More stories on this topic...
Data analytics & management
Grid20/20 adds analysis to its middle-of-the-grid monitoring
April 15, 2015 -- Grid20/20 added a software package to accompany its grid sensors, letting customers analyze energy, voltage, current and temperature information returned from the "middle" of the smart grid, the firm's President Alan Snook told us this week. "Utilities need sensors . . . keep reading

More stories on this topic...
Decoupling utility firms
Wellinghoff urges creation of distribution ISOs
March 17, 2015 -- EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEW -- IOUs would own grid, maintain it but not run it: In retail markets, grid ownership and operation should be separated to allow competitive energy sales, Jon Wellinghoff, former chairman of FERC, told us recently in an exclusive interview . . . keep reading

More stories on this topic...
Demand response
Green Charge learns how to make storage attractive
April 23, 2015 -- EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEW -- Technology finds ripe market as demand charges grow: After Green Charge Networks got off the ground in 2009, it used $12 million in DOE funding for a smart grid demo project with Consolidated Edison (Con Edison) to build a distributed storage . . . keep reading

More stories on this topic...
Demos & pilots
Southern California Edison reports on 2-year demo
March 31, 2015 -- Technology director finds interoperability still lacking -- EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEW -- As Southern California Edison (SCE) ends its tech demo project at the University of California, Irvine, interoperability is still showing up as critical for the future . . . keep reading

More stories on this topic...
Deployments
White House announces USDA funds, QER Part One
April 22, 2015 -- Smart grid figures prominently in both federal efforts: US President Barack Obama issued executive actions on energy, the White House told the press yesterday, including allocating $72 million in USDA loans for smart grid and solar projects in rural areas . . . keep reading

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Distributed - onsite generation
DELOITTE: Renewables boom fostered by smart grid
April 24, 2015 -- 10% renewables threshold starts looking old fashioned: Getting the balance between renewables integration and power demand right presents challenges to utilities and the renewables sector -- and the merger and acquisition activity in them, consultancy Deloitte said . . . keep reading

More stories on this topic...
Distribution automation
Silver Spring canopy network heads to Mexico City
April 24, 2015 -- Mexico's Comisión Federal de Electricidad (CFE) chose Silver Spring Networks to deploy a "canopy" network for AMI and "loss reduction projects on distribution" in Mexico City's Central District, Silver Spring told the press yesterday. The US firm will work with Tecnologías . . . keep reading

More stories on this topic...
Dynamic & TOU pricing
California PUC ALJ proposes new residential TOU rates
April 23, 2015 -- A California PUC ALJ issued a lengthy proposed decision Tuesday approving residential TOU rates for the state's major utilities by 2019, which it touted as a "critical first step" to optimize the use of the biggest AMI roll-out in the country. The proposal . . . keep reading

More stories on this topic...
Education - outreach
Smart Energy GB takes Smart Energy Week to Leicester, UK
March 18, 2015 -- Smart Energy GB is taking Smart Energy Week to Leicester this week, organizers of the national consumer campaign for smart meters told the press this week. The event is a chance for residents to find out more about how smart meters can "transform the way we buy . . . keep reading

More stories on this topic...
Electric vehicles - EVs
Siemens to offer WiFi-enabled, DR-ready EV charger
April 22, 2015 -- Siemens is introducing a WiFi-enabled EV charging station that residential customers can use to remotely monitor and control power use, the firm told the press yesterday. EV owners can use the VersiCharge Smartgrid station to schedule automatic charging for when rates . . . keep reading

More stories on this topic...
Electricity retailers
Retailer/generator MP2 Energy widens scope to homes
February 26, 2015 -- EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEW -- Home solar PV, DR play growing roll in firm's offerings: Power generator and retailer MP2 Energy is growing its customer base beyond just C&I customer to include new DR and solar PV services aimed at residential customers, MP2 VP of Sustainable . . . keep reading

More stories on this topic...
Energy efficiency
BuildingIQ helps utilities integrate DR, efficiency
April 13, 2015 -- EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEW -- Japanese come calling ahead of power market deregulation: More utilities are taking up BuildingIQ's software, which contributes to DR programs with more "flexibility and resiliency," BuildingIQ VP of Business Development Scott . . . keep reading

More stories on this topic...
Energy management
EPRI leads California effort on zero-net-energy homes
April 21, 2015 -- EPRI will lead an effort by Southern California Edison (SCE), the California PUC, BIRAenergy, Itron and Meritage Homes to evaluate the energy use and grid integration of a new community of at least 20 zero-net-energy houses, EPRI told the press yesterday. The project is . . . keep reading

More stories on this topic...
Energy storage
Eguana, LG Chem to offer AC battery storage for solar
April 24, 2015 -- Eguana Technologies and LG Chem are developing an AC battery that functions as a full energy storage system, the firms told the press this week. Lithim-ion battery maker LG Chem and power control and conversion tech firm Eguana will work on the AC Battery under a multi-year . . . keep reading

More stories on this topic...
Environmental
NERC critical of EPA's proposed Clean Power Plan
April 23, 2015 -- NERC this week released a new analysis on EPA's proposed Clean Power Plan (CPP) that sided with the biggest industry criticism of the policy -- that the interim 2020 targets are too big to manage. The CPP would require that 80% of the cuts be complete by 2020 and the . . . keep reading

More stories on this topic...
Exclusives
Green Charge learns how to make storage attractive
April 23, 2015 -- EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEW -- Technology finds ripe market as demand charges grow: After Green Charge Networks got off the ground in 2009, it used $12 million in DOE funding for a smart grid demo project with Consolidated Edison (Con Edison) to build a distributed storage . . . keep reading

More stories on this topic...
Global cooperation
Grids in EU 'must evolve' in big way, EC official says
April 6, 2015 -- Smart grids "will play a key role" in ensuring the European Union (EU) can integrate renewables at a level that meets power demand and ultimately in the EU's development of an "energy union," or integrated energy market, European Commissioner for Climate Action and Energy . . . keep reading

More stories on this topic...
Government agencies
NERC critical of EPA's proposed Clean Power Plan
April 23, 2015 -- NERC this week released a new analysis on EPA's proposed Clean Power Plan (CPP) that sided with the biggest industry criticism of the policy -- that the interim 2020 targets are too big to manage. The CPP would require that 80% of the cuts be complete by 2020 and the . . . keep reading

More stories on this topic...
HANs
EnergyHub to give TXU thermostats location awareness
December 18, 2014 -- Texas energy retailer TXU Energy teamed with DR software firm EnergyHub to add location-based thermostat adjustments to TXU's smart thermostats, the firms told the press yesterday. The changes will let customers program thermostats to lower heating and AC while they are away and use . . . keep reading

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Hardware - parts - chips - firmware
New Everspin RAM for AMI lasts 30 years in harsh climates
February 27, 2015 -- Everspin Technology developed a smart meter data management and memory system for its radio and microelectronic (RIM), 3-phase smart meters, it said recently. The firm calls its MR25H40 a "Magnetoresistive RAM" memory system, for use in environments that need data integrity . . . keep reading

More stories on this topic...
Health & safety
Smart meter opt-outs tangled in California scandal
February 13, 2015 -- TURN questions communications between PG&E, PUC: Ratepayer advocacy group the Utility Reform Network (TURN) supports the California PUC's decision ordering Pacific Gas & Electric (PG&E) to let customers opt out of its smart meter program and does not want it overturned . . . keep reading

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Industry conferences
PNNL adds big battery research to smart grid projects
March 20, 2015 -- Manager describes multiple projects, upcoming conference: The Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL) is working on six smart grid initiatives with some wrapping up and others just getting started, PNNL Energy Infrastructure Manager Carl Imhoff told . . . keep reading

More stories on this topic...
ISO - RTOs
Ontario ISO offers RFPs for DR pilot projects
April 3, 2015 -- Ontario's Independent Electricity System Operator (IESO) is accepting RFPs for DR pilot projects to add a total of 100 MWs to the province's grid, the body told the press yesterday. The program will look to DR to provide an alternative to managing generation output, IESO said . . . keep reading

More stories on this topic...
Labs & tech alliances
EPRI leads California effort on zero-net-energy homes
April 21, 2015 -- EPRI will lead an effort by Southern California Edison (SCE), the California PUC, BIRAenergy, Itron and Meritage Homes to evaluate the energy use and grid integration of a new community of at least 20 zero-net-energy houses, EPRI told the press yesterday. The project is . . . keep reading

More stories on this topic...
Law
ComEd proposes lower delivery rate, seeks comments
April 16, 2015 -- Commonwealth Edison (ComEd) filed its annual delivery service formula rate request that would result in a decrease of about $1 on the average monthly residential bill starting next year, the utility told the press yesterday. If request goes through as is, the utility would cut . . . keep reading

More stories on this topic...
Market research & analysis
Consortium puts smart grid benefits at $3.7 billion
April 22, 2015 -- Smart grids could potentially save power consumers 3.5 billion Euros (US$3.7 billion) through avoided investments and maintenance -- and through more competitive wholesale power prices, the PowerMatching City Consortium told the press last week. The group is reportedly . . . keep reading

More stories on this topic...
Microgrids
NREL's ESIF offers equipment testing on grand scale
April 14, 2015 -- EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEW -- Big energy systems fixed up before deployment: NREL's Energy Systems Integration Facility (ESIF) is playing a part in Hawaiian Electric's (HECO) deployment of home solar, Ben Kroposki, director of the Power Systems Engineering Center at NREL, told us last week. Solar City, . . . keep reading

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Net metering - feed-in tariffs
BROWN: Use market-based pricing, not net metering
April 16, 2015 -- DG is increasingly getting market penetration in the US, but may not have much of an impact on grid congestion or carbon emissions due to ill-conceived reimbursement programs, Harvard Electricity Policy Group Executive Director . . . keep reading

More stories on this topic...
Networks
Silver Spring canopy network heads to Mexico City
April 24, 2015 -- Mexico's Comisión Federal de Electricidad (CFE) chose Silver Spring Networks to deploy a "canopy" network for AMI and "loss reduction projects on distribution" in Mexico City's Central District, Silver Spring told the press yesterday. The US firm will work with Tecnologías . . . keep reading

More stories on this topic...
Outage management
Another Canadian utility picks OMS from ACS
April 10, 2015 -- Advanced Control Systems is installing its outage management system (OMS) in Kitchener-Wilmot Hydro's grid in southwestern Ontario, Canada, the firm told the press this week. The utility chose ACS' system because it could integrate with its . . . keep reading

More stories on this topic...
Prepay programs
DEFG finds prepay energy satisfies two-thirds of users
April 1, 2015 -- One third of people in the US who have used prepayment for energy were "very satisfied" and 41% were "somewhat satisfied," a survey late last year of 1,000 consumers in the US found, Distributed Energy Financial Group (DEFG) told the press yesterday. DEFG is a consulting firm specializing in consumers and consumer-facing offerings in . . . keep reading

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Privacy - data security
White House takes steps in cybersecurity, privacy agenda
January 20, 2015 -- The White House set Feb 13 to host an event called Summit on Cybersecurity & Consumer Protection at Stanford University, the Obama administration told the press last week. The plan is to "help shape public and private-sector efforts to protect American consumers and companies . . . keep reading

More stories on this topic...
R&D
EPRI leads California effort on zero-net-energy homes
April 21, 2015 -- EPRI will lead an effort by Southern California Edison (SCE), the California PUC, BIRAenergy, Itron and Meritage Homes to evaluate the energy use and grid integration of a new community of at least 20 zero-net-energy houses, EPRI told the press yesterday. The project is . . . keep reading

More stories on this topic...
Regulation services
Sunverge helps utilities realize the value of DG
February 20, 2015 -- With over 400 deployments, CEO describes how: Sunverge CEO Ken Munson sees the utility sector as his DG firm's vital market long term, and he is adamant that there is no "death spiral" in DG and renewable energy for utilities, he told us this week . . . keep reading

More stories on this topic...
Regulatory policies
California PUC ALJ proposes new residential TOU rates
April 23, 2015 -- A California PUC ALJ issued a lengthy proposed decision Tuesday approving residential TOU rates for the state's major utilities by 2019, which it touted as a "critical first step" to optimize the use of the biggest AMI roll-out in the country. The proposal . . . keep reading

More stories on this topic...
Reliability
NERC critical of EPA's proposed Clean Power Plan
April 23, 2015 -- NERC this week released a new analysis on EPA's proposed Clean Power Plan (CPP) that sided with the biggest industry criticism of the policy -- that the interim 2020 targets are too big to manage. The CPP would require that 80% of the cuts be complete by 2020 and the . . . keep reading

More stories on this topic...
Renewables
DELOITTE: Renewables boom fostered by smart grid
April 24, 2015 -- 10% renewables threshold starts looking old fashioned: Getting the balance between renewables integration and power demand right presents challenges to utilities and the renewables sector -- and the merger and acquisition activity in them, consultancy Deloitte said . . . keep reading

More stories on this topic...
Reprints
BROWN: Use market-based pricing, not net metering
April 16, 2015 -- DG is increasingly getting market penetration in the US, but may not have much of an impact on grid congestion or carbon emissions due to ill-conceived reimbursement programs, Harvard Electricity Policy Group Executive Director . . . keep reading

More stories on this topic...
SGIGs
CenterPoint tallies outage minutes saved since 2011
April 9, 2015 -- CenterPoint Energy has since 2011 helped customers avoid more than 100 million outage minutes, in part because it installed distribution-management system software from ABB, the vendor told the press yesterday. CenterPoint's "self-healing" grid can more quickly identify . . . keep reading

More stories on this topic...
Smart cities
XLink to sell Cyan smart grid gear in South Africa
March 25, 2015 -- Johannesburg, South Africa-based XLink Communications is set to distribute Cyan's smart energy communication technology -- that allows the measurement and control of energy use for the metering and lighting markets -- in South Africa, Cyan told the press yesterday. XLink will . . . keep reading

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Smart home
SolarCity to give away 10,000 Nest thermostats
April 14, 2015 -- SolarCity will give a Nest Learning Thermostat to the first 10,000 new customers in California who sign up for its solar systems, it told the press yesterday. Customers have to have a compatible AC system and have to agree to connect the thermostat to SolarCity . . . keep reading

More stories on this topic...
Software
Screaming Power wants to build better utility apps
March 9, 2015 -- CEO envisions utilities, customers both benefiting: Screaming Power is drawing to a close the yearlong conversation it had with a group of utility executives to look at mobility from the utility point of view, CEO Gary Michor told us this week. The Toronto-based firm . . . keep reading

More stories on this topic...
Standards
Southern California Edison reports on 2-year demo
March 31, 2015 -- Technology director finds interoperability still lacking -- EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEW -- As Southern California Edison (SCE) ends its tech demo project at the University of California, Irvine, interoperability is still showing up as critical for the future . . . keep reading

More stories on this topic...
Testing - certification
PowerStream to be first to use new Schneider test lab
March 5, 2015 -- Schneider Electric opened the Schneider Electric Smart Grid Laboratory at Ryerson University's Centre for Urban Energy in Toronto, the firm told the press yesterday. The facility will provide a space for partners to test new products or grid strategies, conduct research . . . keep reading

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Trade groups & associations
Storage association sees market evolve regionally
April 20, 2015 -- EXCLUSIVE -- California, Texas, PJM play various, growing roles: Energy storage is "widespread today" in the US and will move forward rapidly once various trends in different regions come together, Energy Storage Assn Executive Director Matt Roberts told us last week in an exclusive interview. "If we put all these different market structures together, we would have one amazing . . . keep reading

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Training - staff certification
Tecnalia promotes smart grid lab on Basque campus
March 6, 2015 -- Tecnalia opened a group of smart grid labs on the campus of the Bizkaia Science & Technology Park in Bilbao, Spain, the firm told the press recently. The Spanish technological research firm invested 14 million Euros (US$15.4 million) in the laboratories, which will research . . . keep reading

More stories on this topic...
Transactive energy
Wellinghoff urges creation of distribution ISOs
March 17, 2015 -- EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEW -- IOUs would own grid, maintain it but not run it: In retail markets, grid ownership and operation should be separated to allow competitive energy sales, Jon Wellinghoff, former chairman of FERC, told us recently in an exclusive interview . . . keep reading

More stories on this topic...
Transmission - HV lines
New Smart Wires technology manages HV power flows
March 5, 2015 -- EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEW -- Former researcher for inventor explains breakthrough: Even with 300,000 miles of HV utility transmission lines spanning the US, there are few power firms not struggling with "gridlock," Smart Wires Director of Product Management . . . keep reading

More stories on this topic...
US stimulus
NorthWestern Energy demo shows DA, TOU-based DR really works
January 23, 2014 - EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEW -- Restoration for most customers cut from 2 hours to seconds: NorthWestern Energy (NWE) used Cooper Power Systems' Yukon Feeder Automation software for outage restoration and cut outage restoration times drastically, June Pusich-Lester, an engineer who works with NWE's energy efficiency programs, told us in a recent, exclusive interview . . . keep reading

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Utility operations
OPower adds customer care to utility software system
February 18, 2015 -- OPower upgraded its customer-engagement software, calling it OPower 6, the firm told the press today. The important new feature the firm added with this upgrade was "customer care," OPower said. Puget Sound Energy (PSE) will be the first utility to deploy the customer-care . . . keep reading

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