Smart grids are the electricity grids of the future. They meet all the demands of modern energy distribution and enable the connection of customers and generation assets.
Since renewable energies, particularly from wind turbines and photovoltaic cells, have needed to be taken into account in the energy supply, and some fast-changing, volatile amounts of energy have been fed into the grid, the demands on distribution grids have been changing. These requirements must be met, while still providing an energy supply which is reliable and as close to interruption-free as possible.
The increasing proportion of the energy feed which is volatile and difficult to predict should be captured and balanced out.
In a smart electricity grid, status information for equipment and data on the amounts of energy fed in and drawn out are ascertained, distributed and processed. Alongside grid management as it is at present, data management is an important task, as data is used to control the grid, consumption and the feed.
At the same time, the smart grid guarantees the high quality and reliability of the energy supply. Large-scale automation of the equipment on the distribution grids means that on the one hand, it is possible to respond quickly to changes in the feed and consumption situation and on the other hand, to respond to the operating situation (e.g. in case of disruptions).
A Smart Grid for Berlin?
The continually increasing number of renewable and local generation assets in Berlin, primarily photovoltaic cells and thermal power stations, changes the demands on the distribution grid. To ensure that optimum use is made of this energy requires a flexible and smart electricity grid, which directs the energy to where it is needed.
The transformation of buildings into "smart homes" means that consumers' energy usage is also changing. And we must continue to guarantee an energy supply that is as reliable and interruption-free as possible.
When expanding to become a smart grid, electromobility must also be taken into account. Electric vehicles are integrated into the energy grid via the charging infrastructure, in that they save energy as fuel, but can also be used as storage. In addition, other energy storage methods such as 'Power to Heat' and 'Power to Gas' will play a role in the future.