May 16, 2013 | Uncategorized
For a century, the power grid has been keeping lights on for homes and businesses across the United States. But as the country continues to grow, the need for a smarter structure is increasingly more apparent. In 2007, the U.S. Department of Energy was tasked with bringing the nation up-to-date with what is now being called “the smart grid”.
Essentially, the DOE is going to bring new technologies to the nation’s electricity infrastructure. The system should include computer-based remote control and automation, allowing for two way communication that has been utilized in other industries for decades. It won’t be a rapid improvement, with officials saying it may take years, but the technology should launch the energy infrastructure into a more secure future.
One of the first components of the DOE’s plan was to install smart meters across the country. Many states have already passed laws that require the devices. Hopefully, the rest of the United States will follow suit to transform the power grid.
Some of the states mandating smart meter installations have also deregulated their energy markets to allow customers to choose a retail provider for power supply instead of a utility. Check out www.electricitycompaniestexas.com to see if you are able to choose.
Smart meters automatically send reports to the local utility about your energy consumption, sometimes every 15 minutes. Before the introduction of smart meters, utility workers had to drive to your home or business and manually take a reading of your energy use. It took a lot of manpower and energy that is eliminated with this new technology. In addition, smart meters make it easier for you to track you energy use. They come with a digital screen the shows you up-to-date information on the amount of electricity you have consumed.
But perhaps the best benefit of smart meter is the fact that they can notify your utility of power outages. In most areas of the United States, a utility only knows about a power outage if someone reports it. These new devices can help it get the power on more quickly.
All the aspects of what the smart grid will hold are not known. In fact, the DOE says they are likely to evolve over time. Nevertheless, the implementation of the smart grid will revolutionize the electricity infrastructure, creating efficiency and the energy capacity needed to provide electricity for decades to come.