An energy first as UK successfully transmits data via national electricity grid

Signal of change / An energy first as UK successfully transmits data via national electricity grid

By Iain Watt / 12 Oct 2016

What exactly does ‘transmitting data through the grid’ mean? Is this a good thing? Is it blockchain-supported? Will it nullify innovation from elsewhere? Will it unleash a new era of disruptive innovation? What does it mean for the Living Grid?

"Data has been transmitted across a national electricity grid for the first time, in what could be a significant step towards the creation of virtual power stations, where many thousands of homes and businesses combine to manage electricity use more smartly.

 

The flexibility provided by thousands of appliances combined could reduce peaks in energy use and remove the need for some large new gas or nuclear power stations or polluting diesel generator farms that are started up in times of short supply."

 

An energy first as UK successfully transmits data via national electricity grid

Data has been transmitted across a national electricity grid for the first time, in what could be a significant step towards the creation of virtual power stations, where many thousands of homes and businesses combine to manage electricity use more smartly.



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What might the implications of this be? What related signals of change have you seen?

So I do this in my house, with my broadband going through the electricity ring main to data plugs. It’s fairly standard kit. This is the grid scale version, but in the end it’s just an alternative data network, like fibre optic or satellite. Therefore I’m doubtful it’s a real game changer, but it may make smart devices a bit more “plug and play” than having to log your fridge in to the wifi. It might allow smart devices to be introduced almost unnoticed, which is good for the smart grid. But we may need some kind of protocol to give consumers confidence that their devices are being managed beneficially if smart devices are the default rather than needing the consumer to “opt-in”. (does this exist already?) But any development that gets people excited about smart grid is fine by me…
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