The city of Rotterdam will connect 20,000 households and companies to a smart grid network. The city has signed a contract for this purpose with companies Stedin, Siemens, Lyv en Omnetric.
A smart grid is an electrical grid which includes a variety of operational and energy measures including smart meters, smart appliances, renewable energy resources, and energy efficient resources. Electronic power conditioning and control of the production and distribution of electricity are important aspects of the smart grid.
Smart grid initiatives seek to improve operations, maintenance and planning by making sure that each component of the electric grid can both ‘talk’ and ‘listen.’ Another major component of smart grid technology is automation.
In many places, a power company will only know that service is out if a customer calls. In a smart grid scenario, if service is interrupted the company will know right away because certain components of the grid (smart meters in the affected area, for instance) stop sending sensor data. By ensuring that all the components of the grid — from transformers to power lines to home electric meters — have IP addresses and are capable of two-way communication, the company can manage distribution more efficiently, be proactive about maintenance and respond to outages faster.
The aim of the scheme is to provide intelligent control of power generation and consumption, starting in the Rotterdam district of Merwe-Vierhavens, in order to even out consumption peaks, avoid grid overloads and save energy and distribution costs.
After successful completion of the test phase, the project partners are planning to extend the smart grid to other districts and later to outside Rotterdam, with one million additional connections.
Rotterdam is one of the largest five cities in the country (Amsterdam, Rotterdam, The Hague, Utrecht and Eindhoven) who are taking the lead in the implementation of the Smart City Strategy of The Netherlands.