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Smart grid analytics companies to see huge returns by 2020

SUBNET Solutions Inc | Wednesday, May 08, 2013

Utilities have turned their attention toward installing smart grid technology like intelligent electronic devices for several reasons, whether it's to increase operational efficiency and lower costs or improve the reliability of the grid for better customer service. 

A recent report, though, found that many U.S. utilities will need to turn to smart grid technologies to improve efficiency when it comes to dealing with energy resources that may become more constrained over time. To ensure this, many are turning to analytics and data management solutions that help companies leverage the huge amount of data that can be collected from the smart grid using new devices.

These technologies give utilities the opportunity to look deep into all data collected, which improves monitoring and control of the grid, demand forecasting and energy usage and the rate at which the company can identify and fix a problem on the network. What's more, the technology can also be used to better integrate renewable energy sources into the the grid. 

According to a new report from GTM Research titled "The Soft Grid 2013-2020: Big Data and Utility Analytics for the Smart Grid," cumulative spending on analytics solutions for the smart grid will rise above $20.6 billion between 2012 and 2020. Further results show spending will hit $3.8 billion every year by the end of the decade, and that the utilities that spend the money up front to install these technologies will see a return on investment of more than $121.8 billion all over the world.

Potential of analytics
Global business technology leader SAS recently discussed the potential data analytics has for the smart grid sector. 

"This is a transformational time for the utilities industry. Leaders are successfully analyzing a wealth of big data they produce to realize the efficiencies and savings of a more intelligent grid," said Tim Fairchild, SAS Global Utilities Practice Director. "Powerful SAS Analytics, coupled with the innovation and leadership of SAS' utilities customers, is helping make smart grid a reality."

The power and opportunity that comes with smart grid technologies may be best demonstrated by SUBNET's solutions developed for the smart grid. SUBNET's Unified Asset Monitoring Information solution, for example, can be used for unified substation information access to whatever asset management system is in place. 

The solution also helps drive system analytics from all data collected on substation operations, and keep controllers informed on the health of all grid equipment and assets. If something goes wrong, personnel are immediately notified, allowing the utility to quickly make changes. 

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