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NIST releases final draft of smart grid "Framework 2.0" document

SUBNET Solutions Inc | Thursday, March 01, 2012

The National Institute of Standards and Technology has released its final power grid report, "NIST Framework and Roadmap for Smart Grid Interoperability Standards, Release 2.0," which details a plan for modernizing the nation's aging electricity infrastructure into a fully interoperable intelligent grid.

According to PhysOrg, this final version included input from various stakeholder groups, including representatives from standards organizations, trade associations, utilities and industries involved in smart grid deployment.

"Release 2.0 represents a significant update to the NIST Release 1.0 Framework," said George Arnold, the National Coordinator for Smart Grid Interoperability at NIST. "In addition to the comments received through the public review, we vetted the draft framework in advance with the Smart Grid Interoperability Panel (SGIP) and other groups. The document reflects the consensus-based process the SGIP uses to coordinate development of Smart Grid standards."

The report comes as policies such as the Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007 (EISA) and the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 have come into fruition, accelerating the rate at which smart grid technologies have been developed. These acts have led to $4.5 million in investments for electric delivery and energy reliability activities. The report states that the modernized grid will include nearly 700 automated substations and more than 1,000 sensors that will be used to detect minor disturbances and contain them so as to prevent regional, sprawling blackouts.

As these projects begin, interoperability will continue to play a significant role. The SGIP was created by NIST in November 2009 to allow discussion for smart grid interoperability and to allow members to collaborate on the development of smart grid standards. NIST and the SGIP together boast more than 1,900 volunteers from 740 organizations that work to create usable standards for the new grid.

Many of these standards, which address issues ranging from wireless communication to home energy meters, are critical for the seamless integration and operation of the smart grid.

Framework 2.0 included an additional 22 standards, specifications and guidelines to the original 75 standards recommended in the first draft. The list includes standards written for substation automation, IEDs and RTUs, and the security requirements for power system management.

SUBNET Solutions Inc. works with utilities to ensure compliance with these national standards, employing its Unified Grid Intelligence to provide real-time integration of intelligent utility systems. 

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