GridComm: Smarter Grids

Streetlights were considered a big improvement over gas lamps when they were first introduced in the late 19th century. And since then, not much has changed, other than the addition of more streetlights as cities and towns grew and different kinds of bulbs. But streetlights do account for about 40% of a city's electricity budget, which can amount to tens of millions of dollars a month for la... » read more

New Standards For Connectivity

By Pallab Chatterjee The last couple of months have been busy for data transfer standards. Consider the following moves: Power Line Communication (PLC) has become a new standard by the IEEE and has two groups promoting it: HD-PLC and Home Plug Alliance. Bluetooth also has made progress with the draft of the new Bluetooth Low Energy Technology as part of the July version 4 specificatio... » read more

Upgrading the 100-year-old grid, one standard at a time

By Brian Fuller The nation’s power grid hasn’t been upgraded in a century, but suddenly there’s a sense of urgency. In high-profile meetings from Washington to Santa Clara in the past two months, industry executives, scientists, engineers and government officials have ratcheted up the dialogue about modernizing how energy is generated, distributed and used. The movement, helped by a... » read more