Smart Grid News

President Barack Obama awarded $2.3 billion in Recovery Act advanced energy manufacturing tax credits for clean energy manufacturing on Friday.  About $23 million of that went to smart grid applications -- with awardees including:

  • Itron to re-equip a facility to produce its smart meters
  • Cooper Power for two projects involving transformers
  • Ice Energy for energystorageunits for use with direct expansion AC in commercial and small industrial applications
  • Metglas to increase domestic production of amorphorous metals that form the core of most energy efficient transformers
  • Premium Power to manufacture energy storage systems
  • S&C Electric to produce a fault-interrupting device for overhead distribution system applications and switchgear for underground distribution
  • Southwire for new manufacturing lines to produce cables for wind and solar applications

Whirlpool, Direct Energy, Best Buy and Lennox are set to launch a small-scale pilot in Houston to study energy usage and smart grid behavior of consumers.    

Smart Grid Investment

We have three smart grid investments so far in 2010, only two weeks into the year:

  • Wheb Ventures' investment in UK home energy management firm, Passiv Systems
  • EcoFactor's $2.4 million raise
  • Verdiem's $4.7 million from Kleiner Perkins and Microsoft for PC energy management

Add that to the $120 million investment in smart grid we saw last quarter:

Smart Grid Quotes to Go

“70 percent of consumers with programmable thermostats don’t use them even though they could save significant money.  Any new device has to be incredibly easy, convenient, and interactive to keep consumers engaged.”  Will West, CEO, Control4
 
“The utility industry is trying to figure out how to get smarter. It’s a major dilemma for this industry but the change is unstoppable.”   Allan Schurr, VP, Strategy and Development, IBM Global Energy & Utilities Industry

“Bills don’t go down automatically just because you have a smart grid. The customers have to do something. [We need] something that everyone can use so they can reap the benefits of the smart grid.”  Patrick James, Director of Smart Grid Technologies, TXU Energy
 
 
Links of Note

Is Apple Getting into Energy Management? 

The Smart Grid in 2010: Market Segments, Applications and Industry Players  Free Download

Smart Grid Security Blog

From Brian Fahri at an EPRI workshop, "UCAIUG is to the smart grid what the Vatican is to Catholics." 


Smart Grid Events

Grid Com Forum   Febuary 2-3, 2010  
Santa Clara Convention Center  Santa Clara, CA