No surprises in final version of NIST smart grid roadmap

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A final version 2.0 of the National Institute of Standards and Technology roadmap for smart grid interoperability released Feb. 28 differs only slightly from an earlier draft the agency put out last fall.

The document conceptualizes the smart grid and lists standards developed through a voluntary process; the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission in July 2011 declined (.pdf) to start a rulemaking process on adoption of interoperability standards in favor of voluntary standards acceptance.

"There isn't an indication that [a rulemaking process] is necessary at this time, but in the future things may change. One never knows," said George Arnold, NIST national coordinator for smart grid interoperability, in an interview.

There is somewhat more emphasis in the final version's smart grid conceptual reference diagram on distributed energy resources than there was in the draft, Arnold added. Distributed energy resources come from many small sources located on the grid, such as small wind turbines, solar energy or stored energy. The smart grid should permit their easier integration onto the energy grid, Arnold said.

For more:
- download the final V.2 NIST Framework and Roadmap for Smart Grid Interoperability Standards (.pdf)

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