Proving the Business Case for the Internet of Things

Government invests $2.9m in Parry Sound smart grid project

Steve Rogerson
August 21, 2019

The Canadian government has announced a $2.9m investment in a smart grid project in the Ontario town of Parry Sound, led by utility Bracebridge Generation and Toronto-based software engineering company Opus One.
The project aims to help the utility reduce costs and improve the long-term flexibility and reliability of the grid by leveraging a set of grid intelligence tools that monitor and control locally connected renewable energy generation, storage and residential demand management resources.
“We’re thrilled to be working with Bracebridge Generation to transform Parry Sound into a net-zero smart community,” said Hari Subramaniam, chief of strategic growth at Opus One. “By adding our grid intelligence solution to their toolset, Bracebridge Generation can take advantage of smarter and cleaner resources like a community microgrid and residential demand management to better balance energy consumption and generation. Projects like these not only boost the reliability of a system that we rely on daily, they also help us achieve savings for customers and reduce greenhouse gas emissions.”
Building on the utility’s net-zero community plan, Opus One is providing software intelligence that will give Bracebridge Generation full visibility and control of their network to help:

  • increase solar and energy storage penetration in Parry Sound;
  • reduce constraints at the transmission station to improve reliability;
  • increase adoption of electric vehicles;
  • automate and integrate residential demand management via controllable hot water tanks, EV chargers and battery storage;
  • increase system resiliency with a feeder-level microgrid; and
  • defer unnecessary costly upgrades in poles and wires infrastructure.
“Technologies that enable the customer to participate in creating and managing their energy are becoming more affordable, and widespread adoption is around the corner,” said Vince Kulchycki, chief operating officer at Lakeland Holding, the parent company of Bracebridge Generation. “While these options can give customers new choices and the ability to save energy, they create challenges for our provincial electrical distribution infrastructure. At Bracebridge Generation, we recognise that innovation will be crucial in adapting to these new concepts, and we are pleased to work with Opus One to create solutions that help not just our customers, but can be adapted elsewhere.”
The funding announcement was made by parliamentary secretary Paul Lefebvre, on behalf of Amarjeet Sohi, Canada’s minister of natural resources. The investment comes from the government’s smart grid programme that will see more than $180bn invested in the country’s infrastructure.
Opus One is a software engineering company with the vision of a digitalised, decentralised and decarbonised planet. Its GridOs intelligent energy networking platform optimises complex power flows so it can deliver real-time energy management and integrated planning to distribution utilities and other managers of distributed energy assets.
GridOs is modular and scalable, and integrates seamlessly with existing data systems to unlock potential for distributed energy resources, including renewable generation, energy storage and responsive demand. It also facilitates the management of microgrids from homes to businesses to communities for grid resiliency and value to the electricity user.