One of the biggest challenges to understanding new technologies can be the lack of centralized and credible information readily available. Such is the problem with the Smart Grid – that buzz word concept being tossed around by cleantech companies in the Bay area to policy analysts in Washington. But what does it mean?
Last week, I stumbled upon a report from David Leeds of GTM Research entitled “The Smart Grid in 2010: Market Segments, Applications and Industry Players.” The report, a cool 145 pages, provides an in depth analysis of the smart grid end-to-end, identifying the key players, the overall technology, the market drivers and barriers to adoption. Being an information junkie like I am, I downloaded it and read almost half over the weekend. Mr. Leeds does an excellent job of providing a type of clarity not often found in research papers and I found it not only extremely readable, but interesting.
- About $1.3 billion in venture capital was invested in the Smart Grid sector in the last 4 years and $105 million just in the last 2 quarters of 2009
- The electric grid remains one of the last networks not transformed by information technology (IT) and is arguably one of the furthest reaching and most extensive networks in existence.
- The three biggest challenges facing the Smart Grid are: interoperability standards, utility business models that promote energy efficiency and proper development of systems architecture that can support enterprise-wide current and future applications.
- Without a Smart Grid, renewable technologies will remain niche at best. The hopes for widespread adoption of renewables is non-existent without a smart grid to faciliate and integrate these variable generation sources.
- The Electric Power Research Institute (EPRI) estimates that it will cost $165 billion over two decades to complete the evolution to a smart grid worldwide.
The report also details the major players in the various markets within the smart grid industry and includes our client, Control4 as a company to watch in the consumer energy management systems space. Control4 just announced $17.3 million in funding to develop its AMI (advanced metering infrastructure) business.
If you are involved or interested in this new intelligent utility system that promises to be a challenging and revolutionizing new infrastructure, this report is a must read.
Download here – kudos to Mr. Leeds and GTM Research for an excellent piece.
Posted by: Ashley / ashleyatcaster on Twitter