Proving the Business Case for the Internet of Things

Ventyx to create smart electricity network in Sweden

Iain Morris
May 27, 2014
Enterprise software developer Ventyx has teamed up with Swedish electricity provider Vattenfall on an initiative on the Swedish island of Gotland aimed at creating one of the world’s smartest electricity networks.

Called Smart Grid Gotland, the project will focus on helping customers to control their energy consumption and utilities to meet European Union (EU) targets on reducing carbon emissions.

The initiative will see Ventyx (Atlanta, GA, USA) develop a distribution system optimization service that incorporates network control, demand response management, demand forecasting and business analytics.

That should allow large quantities of wind and other renewable and distributed energy sources to be integrated with the grid, while ensuring the system is reliable and improves efficiency.

Ventyx claims the software it is developing will be able to address bottlenecks in the distribution network that may restrict the flow from wind turbines to consumers.

“Wind power is produced out in the distribution grid and, like solar energy, is highly variable, presenting challenges when it comes to power quality, surveillance and control of the grid,” said Veijo Huusko, the head of R&D portfolio management for Vattenfall (Stockholm, Sweden) Nordic.

“Using industry-leading network management software from Ventyx to create a more intelligent and efficient grid, we can increase the use of renewable energy sources, improve power quality and create added cost-savings for customers over conventional grid technology.”

SCADA systems will be used to cover one of the island’s substations and its associated network – helping to reduce the duration and frequency of outages through the use of smart meters and other equipment in the field.

The business analytics software, meanwhile, will analyze data from the SCADA system and other sources to help boost operational efficiency and lower costs.

“The Gotland smart grid project is one of the world’s most innovative and significant smart grid initiatives in demonstrating how modernizing electricity networks can support a greater variety of renewable energy sources while at the same time improving power reliability and customer control,” said Jens Birgersson, head of the network management business at ABB (Zurich, Switzerland), which acquired Ventyx in 2010. “It is a significant step forward in the development of a modern, sustainable society with the potential for it to serve as an international model for intelligent electricity networks.”

Smart Grid Gotland also involves Schneider Electric (Rueil-Malmaison, France) and has received funding support from the Swedish Energy Agency.

Ventyx says the project was initiated directly in response to EU climate change targets of reducing carbon emissions by 20% by 2020, and also takes into account Sweden’s plans to increase renewable electricity production, mainly through wind power.

After the Gotland pilot, the software player hopes the technology will be used in larger-scale projects on the Swedish mainland and in other European countries.
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