Advantages Of Smart Grid Homes As Well As Disadvantages Of Smart Grid Technology
Smart technology has brought about a revolution in pretty much every aspect of modern living. We have smartphones, smart TVs, smart meters; and now we see the impact it’s having on green energy production. Smart grids are causing a stir when it comes to renewable energy with automated systems enabling huge steps forward in stabilizing, planning, and coordinating production and consumption to maximize the energy produced and minimize the energy consumed. We’ve looked at some of the advantages and disadvantages of smart grid homes. So let’s jump right in.
Advantage Number 1: Smart Grid Reliability
Reliability is a must for any energy production system. Smart grid technology uses data to predict and smooth out any fluctuations in energy production and consumption taking peaks and troughs into account and enabling a finer control and forecasting to the system. Problems are also quickly resolved through continuous self-assessment.
Advantage Number 2: Smart Grid Sustainability
Smart grids are hugely beneficial when it comes to efficiency, and greater efficiency means greater sustainability. With the aid of smart meters, systems are much better equipped to regulate and fine-tune energy out versus energy in which reduces energy consumption which, in turn, reduces the carbon footprint which is a big win for the environment.
Advantage Number 3: Green Renewable Energy
The three main sources of renewable energy, solar, wind, and hydro are all obviously powered by different means and all have different peaks and troughs of production. Using smart technology, it is possible to predict to a finer degree, what will be produced at any time by which means. This enables the grid to balance the load and lessen fluctuations to be able to meet demands. The downfall of green energy has previously been its unpredictability, the use of smart grids greatly reduces this, which is encouraging more reliance on sustainable energy production.
Advantage Number 4: Cost-effective
As smart technology is rolled out throughout the whole system, peak-demand periods will be reduced greatly as power usage is monitored to a much higher degree. This in turn will lead to less wastage, and with the aid of remote monitoring, there will be less need for human intervention, reducing man-hours, travel, and overall expenditure. These savings can then be passed on to the customer.
Advantage Number 5: Security
Smart technology relies on the gathering of information or data and, as with any data storage, there is always an element of danger from hacking. With this in mind, smart grids are being designed to be much safer and more resilient against the dangers of cyber-attacks in a bid to make them hack-proof and safe.
Disadvantage Number 1 Technical Requirements
The technology behind smart grid systems is still relatively new and so the gelling of all the elements within it is sometimes not fully complete. As with any new technology, issues get ironed out as they arise, however, to start with this means there may be a few hiccups along the way. The technological requirements of smart grid systems can sometimes pose problems for the consumer. Some issues can arise with the integration of multiple power plants and can affect the stability of the supply, the load control or system protection. Where these problems happen, there can be a loss of energy efficiency due to inexact transmission and distribution of energy. Data management, communications and cybersecurity are other areas where some complexities have yet to be finalized.
Disadvantage Number 2. Integration Complexity
Integration is an issue which needs addressing in its own right. The intricacies of the integration of a smart grid system are technically challenging due to the differing technologies involved when compared to existing technology and other non-renewables. For the best solution, effective integration is tantamount to creating a robust network which will mitigate outages, load shifting, and peak shaving, and aid microgrid automation. The same robust integration is also required when bringing other renewables such as geothermal, wave power, wind energy, hydroelectric and nuclear power into the mix.
Disadvantage Number 3. Expensive Installation
As with any new technology, when it was first introduced, it is expensive. Smart grid systems are also complex, with many component parts such as smart meters, transmission equipment, electric generators, sensors and algorithms. With such a varied list of component parts, the systems are very demanding when it comes to installation which, in turn, makes for high labor costs. The retrofitting of other systems to bring them into line with the new technology and enable widespread integration of smart grid systems looks set to be very costly indeed, estimated in the region hundreds of billions of dollars, although the end rewards will be greater still. Also, due to the technology being so new, the arising gaps in innovation may cause issues, in addition, the ongoing challenges of security also increase costs.
SMART GRID TECHNOLOGY WILL BECOME THE NEW NORMAL
As we move forward, smart technology is becoming more and more integral as a part of modern life. We have smartphones, smart TVs, and smartwatches. It makes sense for our homes to also become ‘smart’. As more and more people opt for the sustainable, green route of solar energy and water management, smart grid technology enables an integrated system which is much more efficient and reliable. In the future, it’s clear that smart grid technology will make a huge impact on day-to-day living, as it eliminates the need for human intervention and therefore does away with human error. Riverhouse’s Solar Powered Pool Villa Estate in Phuket may be the first to introduce these ideas to property management within Thailand but it will certainly not be the last. With all that we’ve looked at here, smart grid technology looks set to shape the future of our homes.