Proving the Business Case for the Internet of Things

Scottish partnership sees OMG DDS in SGS active network management portfolio

Steve Rogerson
December 1, 2015
 
Smarter Grid Solutions is deploying fellow Scottish company PrismTech’s Vortex OpenSplice in its ANM active network management product to deliver more efficient power distribution.OpenSplice is a commercial and open-source implementation of the Object Management Group's data distribution service (DDS) for real-time systems standard.
 
Smart grids are increasingly being seen as a solution to the problems being faced by power companies and utilities, from connecting higher volumes of renewables and low carbon technologies such as electric vehicles and demand response, to finding more economic ways to meet peaks in electricity demand.
 
The ANM technology can help the power industry overcome many of the technical difficulties involved in delivering a smart grid. ANM allows power distribution networks to be managed in real time, thus increasing existing infrastructure capacity through active management of power generators and associated network assets. This allows for predictable, efficient power flow through grids, and reliable power for end users.
 
Due to the increasingly distributed nature of power generation, real-time management of these systems is required to avoid grid malfunctions. Renewable power is partially responsible for the increasingly distributed nature of power generation, as power distributors seek to take full advantage of it by monitoring real-time changes in demand and matching supply efficiently to meet this demand. To cater for this, Smarter Grid Solutions (SGS) needed a way to provide high levels of real-time data and system scalability to accommodate far greater numbers of generators than was currently possible.
 
“As a company, SGS is proactive in selectively leveraging proven, best of breed technologies and approaches to the design, development and deployment of our industry leading solutions,” said Neil McNeill, head of technology at SGS. “The increasing penetration of smart distributed energy resources (DER), and associated high dependence upon these network assets means both innovative and scalable control philosophies are needed in both the near and medium term to enable a whole new raft of service capabilities for energy provision, storage and delivery. SGS is increasingly embedding the DDS standard within the product portfolio, both within the platform at the inter-process communications layer and as a key mechanism for real-time data exchange, with intelligent nodes dispersed upon the physical power networks. The provenance of Vortex OpenSplice has been invaluable in the evolution of the ANM platform and operates at the heart of the company’s mission critical systems, currently deployed in both the UK and North America.”
 
Vortex OpenSplice has been designed optimally to address the real-time information distribution and management challenges posed by high performance real-time data-processing systems. It was chosen by SGS as it allowed it to leverage the performance and scalability benefits that are inherent in the product.
 
The quality of service support in Vortex OpenSplice helps guarantee predictable and reliable delivery of real-time data, which is vital in energy distribution management. The scalable nature enables SGS to integrate its network management technology into an increasing variety of energy grids regardless of size. This results in increased efficiency and helps increase the capacity of current infrastructure.
 
“Smart Energy is emerging as an important market for Vortex OpenSplice as it is ideally suited to meet the demanding real-time data sharing requirements of distributed power management systems,” said Lawrence Ross, CEO of PrismTech. “We are very pleased that we could provide SGS with the high performance and real-time scalability that they needed for their product.”
 
PrismTech’s customers deliver systems for the IoT, the industrial internet and advanced wireless communications. It supplies the software platforms, tools and professional services needed to build systems with the required platform coverage, performance, scalability, efficiency, flexibility and robustness. Its customers service many market sectors, including industry, energy, healthcare, transportation, finance, aerospace and defence.
 
SGS supports customers worldwide from its offices in New York, London and Glasgow. The company was formed in 2008, originating from the Institute for Energy & Environment at the University of Strathclyde. It established its offices in New York in 2013, and is now an active contributor to the development of the smart grid in many parts of North America.