Pacific Northwest Smart Grid Demonstration team boosts communication

The signal is the heart of the project and will enable the region's grid to become safer, stronger and more reliable

Richland, Wash., May 19, 2011 — April 2011 was a month of connections within the Pacific Northwest Smart Grid Demonstration Project as many of the project's participants demonstrated they could successfully send and receive the project's unique transactive incentive signal, which communicates data and information that will allow utilities to react quickly to changes in demand, price and availability.

The signal is the heart of the project and will enable the region's grid to become safer, stronger and more reliable.

On April 7, engineers from Bonneville Power Administration and Alstom Grid successfully established a digital data connection to Battelle's Electricity Infrastructure Operations Center, or EIOC.

Then, a week later, 25 participants from the project's technology firms, IBM, Alstom Grid, Netezza and Quality Logic, also demonstrated this connection at the EIOC by setting up, testing and demonstrating additional pathways between the individual Smart Grid Demonstration Project systems.

During this "PlugFest," the participants connected 49 virtual nodes and simulated the exchange of information taking place in the PNW-SGDP.

While all the connections are scheduled to be in place by September 2012, the installation of data pathways and the completion of PlugFest are another milestone met on the way to making the region's grid smarter.

The Pacific Northwest Smart Grid Demonstration Project, or PNW-SGDP, is a collaborative, five-year test of new technologies and capabilities that will make our regional power grid smarter.

Unique in size and scope, the PNW-SGDP involves the Bonneville Power Administration, five technology partners, 11 utilities across five states, Washington, Oregon, Idaho, Montana and Wyoming, and the University of Washington. The PNW-SGDP will demonstrate the potential for a safe, scalable and interoperable smart grid for regulated and non-regulated utility environments.

The project is managed by Battelle's Pacific Northwest Division located in Richland, Washington. Battelle is a $5 billion non-for-profit organization that benefits mankind by helping solve some of the world's toughest science- and technology-based challenges.

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