Faced with the convergence of these three grid challenges, legacy systems are cracking under the strain. Adding to that burden, an aging and retiring grid workforce is creating skills gaps and a loss of institutional knowledge.
The utility industry has reached a critical inflection point. So, the obvious next question is, what’s the best way forward?
It all starts with having the right software.
Yes, the utility industry has more than its fair share of software. But point solutions that served the industry well for decades now have the potential to lead to confusion. There are simply too many grid-wide challenges, and these can’t be dealt with effectively in silos.
Instead of grid management, we need grid orchestration.
To illustrate how an orchestrated approach can be beneficial, it’s worth looking at penetration of DERs. As more DERs are integrated onto the grid, complexity grows. You can’t keep sending all that data directly up to the control center for grid operators to figure out. It’s inefficient and overwhelming.
A better approach is to orchestrate DERs downstream, then work out what subset of that downstream data needs to go upstream. Put another way, you need a smarter way to help answer the question: “how much data do we really need?”
That’s a challenge that the right software can help address.