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2014 Smart Grid Trends: Grid Maturity, Storage & Big Data

By Ramesh Saligamé, Senior Director of Strategic Development for the Industrial & Energy Division of Jabil

While Transmission & Distribution continue to be the main stay topics at DistribuTECH, there are few other noteworthy business trends that we should pay attention to: 

Grid Maturity:

 Despite the waning of ARRA (the American Recovery & Reinvestment Act of 2009)funding, there are definite signs of continued investments in the Grid. At DistribuTECH 2014, companies spoke about projects in Distribution Automation and Demand Response. While spending is on the rise, vendors were vocal about not over-designing products to facilitate better sensing and managing of the various elements of the grid.

Storage:

 As a further sign of the maturity of the grid, there are several companies focused on utility grade storage solutions. The belief that the Grid cannot be considered mature without a meaningful storage solution seems to be taking force. It is only a matter of time before policies and standards start to address storage. Policies will need to govern both residential and commercial domains.

Big Data is Here:

 There are also a growing number of companies that are focused on Data Analytics. Enabled by Smart Metering, the collection and analysis of real time data is quickly altering the landscape. Planning Distribution Networks is now drawing strong focus on methods to improve data collection and analysis. The abundance of Data Analytics companies stand testament to this trend.

What trends do you see coming out of the Smart Grid industry in 2014?

Ramesh Saligamé is the Senior Director of Strategic Development for the Industrial & Energy Division of Jabil. In his 20 years with Jabil, he has held various business and technical positions, including expat assignments in Europe and Asia where he managed the transitions and integrations of Jabil’s acquisitions. He holds a Master of Science in Electrical Engineering from Arizona State University and a Master of Business Administration from the University of Michigan.

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