Smart Security Summit, a resounding success
Smart Grid Security is a topic that is getting major attention. Therefore OSGP Alliance invited the industry for a get together to discuss the future at the Smart Security Summit being held on September 28th in Gdansk, Poland.
Well chosen topics around security were being discussed by Mariusz Jurczyk, Aleksander Babs, and Poul Eriksen. We would also like to thank Bo Danielsen and Emil Gurevitch for the great presentation about the successful NES project with SEAS NVE. Andrzej Kazimierski and Mariusz Busilo for sharing the Polish Ministry of Energy Grid Security Strategy. And Tomasz Szalach from Ernst & Young for his insightful speech on reducing the effects of potential attacks.
Smart Grid Security Perspective from Emil Gurevitch
Poland Smart Grid recently interviewed Emil Gurevitch, an information security expert at Networked Energy Services Corporation (NES). Emil has direct experience at a large utility (SEAS-NVE) where he held the role of Software Security Engineer and Project Lead on Smart Grid Security. Prior to that, he developed security systems at IBM and conducted security research at Technical University of Denmark. Emil has authored numerous security papers and has spoken about security issues at many industry conferences.
Hi, Emil. Thank you so much for spending some time with us. Please tell us about the basis of the new NES smart grid security solution?
As a result of close collaboration between NES, the OSGP Alliance and the Danish utility SEAS-NVE, NES developed and released new security features to the three tiers of its Patagonia platform and architecture. These new enhancements to the NES smart metering solution address not only today’s security needs but more importantly future issues that will arise during the lifetime of the Smart Grid System.
In particular, the protective measures in the solution were significantly improved and new detection capabilities were introduced to help utilities in responding and recovering from security incidents.
Poland Smart Grid: Security is getting a lot of attention in all sorts of industries. For utilities, what are the main types of threats they face related to AMI and the Smart Grid?
Emil Gurevitch: Utilities use AMIs and smart grids to store, distribute, and manage energy using information technology. Therefore, they share many of the same assets and corresponding threats as other entities relying on information technology systems.
SEAS-NVE Net introduces free SMS service for all members in the grid operator’s area
With the new service SEAS-NVE’s members will have the opportunity to get a text message, if there is a power outage or with planned outages. It rarely happens, but if the power goes out, such a message will often be very welcome. The service is available for those who live in SEAS-NVE Net’s supply area or are otherwise connected to the grid – for example those with a vacation home in the region.
Read more… (in Danish)
How Prepaid Electricity Meters Make Life Easier (a blog by Conlog)
Modern prepaid electricity meters offer benefits to both tenants and landlords and property managers. There is a major drive by Eskom throughout South Africa, to get more properties and households fitted with prepaid meters, and to educate consumers on the great advantages that these meters offer.
Let’s start by taking a look at how these meters can make the lives of property managers and landlords easier. Firstly, it helps to ensure that tenants are paying for their electricity before consuming it, avoiding the nasty surprise of the landlord being confronted by a huge bill at the maturation the lease. It also helps to easily resolve any disputes on the amount of electricity consumed.
How Prepaid Electricity Meters Make The Lives of Tenants Easier
With regards to tenants, prepaid electricity meters help them to monitor their electricity consumption, by checking the easy to read monitor and adjusting their consumption as required. They are also able to budget in advance, so that there is never an instance where consumers are surprised by a large electricity bill at the end of the month. What’s more, tenants can also be assured that they are paying for the correct amount of electricity they are consuming. Read more…
Smart Meters Allow Energy Savings, But What About Data Security ?
The XXVI Economic Forum in Krynica speaks not only about economic theory, but also about practical solutions that can be applied in our homes, such as smart electricity meters.
About how the so called smart metering of electric power consumption works, explains Mariusz Jurczyk, project manager for AMI Tauron Distribution.
– These meters are a new generation of electronics that allow the measurement of energy at an hourly rate. They help to build awareness of how to use electricity as efficiently as possible. They also provide a wealth of information to the distributor of energy on the work of the power grid – explains the guest of Polish Radio 24.
Such devices are capable, says Mariusz Jurczyk, of controlling the power consumption of the public.
– The devices can also allow remote change of tariffs, along with remote enabling and disabling of the installation of a recipient depending on various external events. We can control it remotely – explains the expert.
Power consumption can be tracked on your phone or tablet
Smart meters also allow the tracking of energy consumption in our homes, such as the consumption of the washing machine and fridge, for example, on your mobile phone or tablet after installing the appropriate application.
– With this application, customers can see at what time their energy consumption was significant. This will make them consider that devices in the household are causing considerable energy consumption, and that there is a need to replace them with something more efficient – says Mariusz Jurczyk.
Collector visits are no longer needed
Smart meters allow for remote reading, so collector visits to the homes of customers are no longer necessary.
– We have a remote reading system, and on this basis we will charge our customers. We will certainly monitor the meters, their technical conditions, proper functioning and, once every few years, we will do auditing control and verification. – says Mariusz Jurczyk.
Eltel technicians restoring power in Finland after “Rauli” storm
The “Rauli” storm moved through Finland during the weekend and it was one of the most massive summer storms in many years. The strong storm wind caused massive power outages and almost 200,000 households went out of power at the same time. More than 280 Eltel electricians and engineers worked in the field during the weekend to restore electricity supplies as quickly as possible.
The storm hit strong over half of the country and electricity networks in large areas were affected. Skilled electricians were rapidly needed in those areas to speed up restoration and reduce response time.
“In the last few years several weather events have afflicted us in Finland and we have improved our storm restoration process further, Juha Luusua President of Eltel’s Power Distribution says.” Most of the network operators contact us well in advance, and we immediately increase the amount of stand-by teams. This means that our field service teams are ready to be dispatched before the storm has even begun.
It may not always be May: Modems and IMSYS in parallel operation at Görlitz
RLM-counters are used since many years for the detection of the power consumption. The forwarding of their data to the processing systems is performed by appropriate communication devices. In the future, smart metering systems (IMSYS) will take over this job. During the transition period from 2017 to 2032, the federal government allows parallel operation of old and new technology, creating enough space to allow for a gradual transition.
Against this background, it may be useful to put some conventional technology together with newer products. This has been proven in practice. For example, Görlitz began installation of smaller numbers of smart metering systems, such that experience could be built up in this framework. Other measuring points can be provided during this time with a known technique to further benefit from well-established processes while leveraging the continuance.
Read more…(in German)
Smart Metering: technology and participation
Enel uses its expertise to develop an innovative electrical grid at Expo Energía 2016 in Santiago, Chile, presenting solutions that transform cities into Smart Cities.
From ancient Athens to large modern capitals, cities have always been the engine of social, economic and cultural progress – a role that in today’s context needs to take on a new perspective, in order to drive growth more sustainably.
By 2050, it is estimated that 65 percent of the world’s population will live in urban areas, which already account for over 60 percent of greenhouse gas emissions. It is therefore crucial to transform cities into Smart Cities.
Making big cities “smart” means rethinking all aspects of a city’s everyday life in terms of efficiency, starting from energy consumption. This was one of the main themes discussed at the recent Expo Energìa 2016 in Santiago de Chile. Institutional representatives of the energy industry participated in the event, which was sponsored by ElectroIndustria Magazine.
Enel, which is present in Chile’s power generation and distribution sector, contributed to the debate by presenting its experience in the development of intelligent management technologies for power grids.
DNV GL, TenneT and ENGIE prove soft energisation system restoration for high-voltage grids
Reliable, safe and fully controlled method tested successfully on 220 kV network in north Netherlands
DNV GL, TenneT and ENGIE have announced the successful completion of the trial of grid system restoration using soft energisation in the Dutch high-voltage grid. Fast and safe, soft energisation reduces the chances of triggering follow-up blackouts and ensures more reliable system restoration. It can be applied to networks of any size with a relatively small generator without electrical stress or risk of damage to components.
After a blackout it is critical that power is restored as quickly, reliably and safely as possible while minimising the stress on network components. Traditional processes for restoring power involve a dedicated black start power plant supplying electricity again to the various network components such as overhead lines, cables and transformers. However, this approach can lead to voltage oscillations that can damage network components or trigger protection devices initiating another shut down.
As part of an effort to increase the level of black start (system restoration) power in TenneT’s network in the northern Netherlands, TenneT, DNV GL and ENGIE developed a new system restoration method for the 220 / 380 kV high-voltage grid based on soft energisation. In this approach, once the network is prepared, the generator terminal voltage at the power plant is increased in a carefully controlled manner from 0 kV to the rated value. As a result, all network components are energised gradually and simultaneously, reducing the electrical stress on network components and substation assets.
E.ON to build one of the first commercial battery systems for the UK grid
E.ON has been awarded a contract with the British transmission system operator National Grid to support the power grid’s stability with an innovative battery solution. With the strong growth of weather-dependent renewable sources such as wind and solar, the amount of power fed into the grid is becoming increasingly volatile. National Grid had therefore launched a tender for a new service to deal with volatile fluctuations. As one of the first of its kind in Great Britain, E.ON’s battery system will help balance demand and supply in real time ensuring that the power supply and quality is maintained. The solution makes it even possible to increase the share of renewable energy in the grid. The 10 megawatt (MW) lithium-ion battery with a size of four shipping containers has an equivalent power of roughly 100 family cars.
Fortum Charge & Drive and Genesta Property Nordic have signed a framework agreement to develop and operate their electric vehicle charging infrastructure
Genesta Property Nordic, a leading real estate management company in the Nordics, has chosen Fortum Charge & Drive to develop, install and operate their future electric vehicle charging infrastructure. By choosing Charge & Drive, the leading system for charging operations, Genesta will increase the value of their property by meeting the tenants expectations of a user friendly solution for electric vehicles (EV:s).
“We look forward to support Genesta to take a lead in being a sustainable real estate company. We have a well-developed Nordic charging network for EVs that Genesta tenants can utilize for longer journeys. We are looking forward to a good partnership based on a turnkey solution”, says Tobias Henmark, Sales & Marketing Director, Fortum Charge & Drive.
Smart charging solutions are already becoming a part of the service solutions tenants expect on the commercial property market. Through the agreement Genesta is able to offer a cost effective charging infrastructure for their tenants without having to project, install or operate it by themselves.
Schneider Electric Receives Top Ranking in Navigant Research Leaderboard Report on Building Energy Management Systems
SmartStruxure™ solution receives highest overall score for strong strategy and execution to help facility managers reduce energy consumption and improve operational efficiency
Company commended for bringing customers market leadership in its integrated intelligent building platform approach and building analytics
Rueil-Malmaison (France), September 14, 2016 – Schneider Electric, the global specialist in energy management and automation, today announced that it has been named a leader in the Navigant Research Leaderboard Report on Building Energy Management Systems (BEMS). For the second year in a row, Schneider Electric has received the highest overall score for strategy and execution among 15 companies that have demonstrated a strong track record in the BEMS market.
Innovation at Every Level for Intelligent Buildings
Schneider Electric’s SmartStruxure™ solution, powered by the company’s StruxureWare™ Building Operation software, was recognized for its advanced capabilities in analytics that promote the development of intelligent buildings and optimize energy management.
Meet OSGP and its members at the following events
Ambrosetti and Enel: Recommendations for reviving investment in Europe
The study “Strengthening Europe’s investability: policy proposals for reviving investment in Europe and the role of the energy sector and digitalisation” presented in Cernobbio, Italy
Cernobbio, September 3rd, 2016 – Clarity in investment strategies, a comprehensive vision of medium/long-term development goals, consistency between European and national intervention levels, cooperation between the private and public sectors and flexibility of solutions based on Member States’ needs are what Europe needs, together with a growth model driven by investment through the positive involvement of the private sector and stimulating high-potential sectors that can act as a lever for the economy. “Network industries” such as energy, transport and ICT are the main enablers of competitiveness, innovation and growth.
These are the conclusions of the report “Strengthening Europe’s investibility: policy proposals for reviving investment in Europe and the role of the energy sector and the digitalisation” prepared by The European House – Ambrosetti (TEH-A) in collaboration with Enel and presented today in Cernobbio, Italy.
The study identifies the main obstacles to this goal and develops a number of recommendations to focus attention on specific actions that can help Europe to accelerate its development. “Europe faces a difficult challenge to ensure continuous and sustainable economic growth in the context of the process of decarbonisation now under way. Investment will play a central role in this effort,” said Enel CEO Francesco Starace. “As a leading global power utility, Enel is at the forefront of a process of profound change taking place across the sector. We therefore recognise the importance of policies that respond effectively to rapid technological progress, and models that promote innovation, as the basis of an attractive macro-economic investment case.
In addition, a visible, stable, transparent and forward-looking legal and regulatory framework is crucial. This is particularly the case in Europe, where technology advancements and market dynamics offer some unique opportunities, not only in the energy sector, but across the entire economy.”
According to Valerio De Molli, the CEO of The European House – Ambrosetti, “the next few months could represent a turning point for Europe, which in the last decade has found itself at the centre of a “perfect storm” that has undermined its political and economic stability. We are at a crossroads.
EDSO: Integrating electricity storage in distribution grids
Distribution System Operators (DSOs) have to reinforce and expand their networks in order to maintain security of supply and quality of service. Many technical options could be envisaged for that purpose, including traditional investment in cables and transformers, using consumers’ flexibility or improving network monitoring and control.
In a new paper, EDSO call policy makers to fix the current regulatory uncertainty and to widen the range of technologies available to DSO in order to improve the power grid management and deliver better services to all consumers.
Ofgem proposes capping prepayment meter warrant charges for indebted consumers
Ofgem has today [September 14] published proposals to cap charges for installing prepayment meters (PPMs) under warrant. An option in our consultation includes placing a firm limit on charges of £100 or £150. The proposals also include plans to ban PPM warrant installation charges for the most vulnerable customers.
When customers fall in debt, one option is for their supplier to install a prepayment meter (PPM) under warrant. Installing a PPM under warrant should be a last resort for recovering debt, to resolve situations where consumers can’t or won’t engage with suppliers to agree a resolution.
Under current rules, suppliers can charge warrant costs back to affected customers. These charges, which can include court costs, can range from £200 up to £900. In 2015, customers faced an average bill of £400 for having their PPM installed under warrant, risking pushing them more into debt.
Ofgem’s proposals aim to protect consumers from experiencing more debt or hardship due to warrant installations. These include capping at £100 or £150 warrant charges for all customers.
These also include plans to entirely prohibit PPM warrant charges, and installations, for the most vulnerable customers. This includes people in financial hardship, and people with physical and mental health issues and learning difficulties.
Data management in the EU electricity networks
The four European associations representing electricity distribution system operators, CEDEC, EDSO, EURELECTRIC and GEODE, and ENTSO-E, representing the transmission system operators, teamed up to share their views on how to manage data and information exchanges between system operators. The resulting effort is a joint report that sets out how rules on data management and exchanges represent a precondition to deploying smart grids and unleashes all potential of the demand side of the electricity system. The report also intends to stir up the debate among stakeholders across networks and markets.
With more variable generation and distributed loads, the EU electricity system is operated closer to its limits. Solutions can be found in more flexibility: that is the demand or generation side adapting their behaviour to support the system. With more customer participation and more decentralised generation, flexibility providers connected to the distribution grid are significantly and continuously increasing. Therefore, the management and exchanges of information and data between the transmission system operators (TSOs), responsible for balancing supply and demand and the distribution system operators (DSOs), responsible for the system’s security of supply and quality of service is fundamental to integrating the new forms of demand and supply.
State of the Union: smarter energy use creates jobs and growth
Smarter energy use combined with ambitious climate action creates new jobs and growth and is the best investment in Europe’s future and in the modernisation of our economy, European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker, has said in his 2016 State of the Union address.
Speaking in Strasbourg on 14 September, President Juncker noted that work towards a single market where energy can flow freely and no EU country is left isolated has progressed over the last year.
On interconnecting EU countries’ energy systems, President Juncker highlighted an agreement between Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania and Poland to end the energy isolation of the Baltic Sea region.
The Commission has also supported new pipelines between Estonia and Finland as well as connectors linking the natural gas grids of Greece, Bulgaria, Hungary, Romania and Austria. This will allow natural gas from the Caspian region and liquefied natural gas from other sources to reach Central Europe, he said.
On energy security, President Juncker noted the new measures on energy security that were published in February this year aimed at minimising interruptions to supply. The measures promote solidarity between EU countries to ensure that households and essential social services are protected in times of crisis.
Smart meters: what and why?
Smart meters have the potential to change the way consumers look at, and use their energy, allowing them to be conscious of their usage patterns. They are meters with data logging and communications which record and transmit a building’s energy usage. Typically, a smart meter will read and store energy usage every 30 minutes and then send this information to energy distributers, or users.
Smart meters have come a long way. Traditional meters, or accumulation meters would simply record the amount of electricity which passed through it since it was first installed, or was last reset. The shortcomings of this style of meter was users would only find out their energy usage when they received their bill and a large amount of labour was required by the provider to send a reader from house to house in intervals to read the meters.
Accumulation meters progressed to interval meters, which measure energy electronically. They can record usage in intervals, usually have a digital display and the data can be downloaded by a reader using an electronic or optical interface. They enable a customer to pay different rates for different time periods in which they use their electricity. However, they are not considered smart meters.
SMART METERS SAVE SPACE
A smart meter is “smart” due to its ability to record more accurate and detailed data and facilitate a two-way flow of information. They eliminate the need for meter readers to visit each meter. Smart meters can receive commands from the supplier and carry out tasks such as disconnecting and reconnecting the power supply when a customer moves out or in. It continuously monitors the supply and can automatically notify the provider if there is a fault. They can also act as a gateway to the home for information.
The space-to-design ratio performance of smart meters has improved as technology advances. Less panel space and electrical installations are required and advanced smart metering designs can use up to 90 per cent less space when compared with typical ‘bottom up connect’ utility meters. This is particularly valuable in high-density, high-rise buildings.
Cornell researchers aim to unleash ‘smart meter’ potential
Striving for a future with smaller electric bills, reduced greenhouse gas emissions and diminished need for power plants, Cornell researchers will use a $1 million grant from the National Science Foundation to create, test and optimize new residential electric storage systems.
“Smart meters – which measure and manage residential electricity in real time – already have been installed in about 40 percent of homes in the United States, but have yet to meet the pledge of smaller electric bills and engage consumers,” said Todd Cowen, professor of civil and environmental engineering, and principal investigator for the project. Cowen is also the Kathy Dwyer Marble and Curt Marble Faculty Director for Energy at Cornell’s David R. Atkinson Center for a Sustainable Future.
Announced Aug. 29, the NSF grant, titled “Energy Smart Community – Leveraging Virtual Storage to Turn Advanced Metering Infrastructure Into a Smart Service System,” seeks to bolster grid flexibility, integrate distributed renewable energy sources and reduce household electricity costs.
“While we already have a large number of homes in the U.S. with smart meters, these homes lack storage capacity that pair with them. This stands as a barrier to developing a truly efficient retail electricity market,” said Cowen. “Smart metering has been driven by utilities and government incentives, but consumers were absent from the process. This grant corrects that, so consumers are engaged in the processes, and we as a society can make great strides in improving the environment.”
The project will test whether adding rechargeable batteries (electric residential storage) to individual residential smart meters can produce significant benefits.
A Smart Grid is Only as Smart as the Information it Gathers and Distributes
Smart grids are only as smart as the information that they gather and assimilate. In an ideal world, they are distributing electrons in an optimal way and avoiding traffic jams, and brown outs.
It’s about more than driving efficiency and reliability. It’s also about incorporating the new set of dynamics in the electricity market place, which include distributed generation, analytics or data analysis, and customer engagement, or the ability of power generators to communicate directly with their customers to save energy. Today, the machines are all interconnected, driven by data that is collected and centrally stored.
“We are all looking at data and how it will enable expectations,” of utilities and end users, says Mike Carlson, president of Siemens Smart Grid, at the group’s meeting in Boston last week. “What will we do with it and how will we make it relevant? It is all in real time — a digital grid, which is not possible without the next generation of analytics added to it.”
The technology must initially optimize wholesale energy markets by, first, assessing how much energy is needed to meet the demand within a ‘controlled area’ and, second, by determining the best generation sources to dispatch while it considers all the potential constraints on a transmission system.
Then and Now: How the Utility Industry Has Changed
These are not easy times for utilities in Europe and the U.S.
First, increasing concern about the link between greenhouse gases and rising global temperatures has led to government policies in many countries that have encouraged—and sometimes required—utilities to embrace renewable energy, such as solar and wind farms, to reduce emissions.
At the same time, the rise of new technologies, such as energy-efficient appliances, smart meters and smart grids, has put new control in the hands of utility customers.
As a result, even though utilities have made efficiency gains through technological innovation and are delivering on the promise of more clean energy, the industry-wide changes have driven up costs, depressed demand and hurt profits. In Europe, demand for power declined almost 6% between 2007 and 2015, according to analyses by PIRA Energy Group.
“This is a rather different world that is proving very problematic for a lot of the established utility industry,” says Michael Grubb, a professor of international energy and climate-change policy at the University College of London.
Recent policy changes are a new direction from two decades of deregulation and privatization aimed at spurring competition and lowering energy prices in North America and Europe. Indeed, utilities in Europe have passed on the added costs of lowering carbon emissions to consumers, who pay average retail energy prices that are more than double those in the U.S., experts say.