Full Title: Grid Edge Intelligence for DER Integration (Executive Summary)
Author(s): Lauren Callaway, Alex Eller, and Richelle Elberg
Publisher(s): Navigant Consulting
Publication Date: 06/2015
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The global utility business faces unprecedented challenges—and opportunities—as distributed energy resources (DER) proliferate. Thus, there is a growing need for more intelligence, control, and agility in the distribution grid, particularly at the edge, where many new disruptive resources and loads are located. To date, utility efforts have been largely reactive, focused on issues caused by renewables intermittency, shifting loads, capacity constraints, and bidirectional power flows. In the longer term, grid edge intelligence and automation will enable the proactive development of markets for aggregated clean resources and services, service-oriented business models, and end-to-end integrated grid management strategies.
Among global regions, North America, Europe, and Asia Pacific have experienced the greatest penetrations of distributed renewables and other resources creating disruptive loads. However, due to diverse physical grid infrastructures, policy and regulatory goals (and limitations), and access to technology, market trends have developed differently in different regions. Specific global and regional trends related to grid edge intelligence and automation include regulator constraints, the converged data approach, and the standardization of distribution network control and monitoring solutions. According to Navigant Research, revenue for global grid edge technologies for DER is expected to grow from $8.5 billion in 2015 to $14.5 billion in 2024.