IT and OT Technologies for the Smart Grid

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Convergence of information and operation technologies (IT & OT) to build a successful Smart Grid

BY RICK NICHOLSON, Ventyx

Smart Grid is a buzzword that has become an intrinsic part of the North American electric utility industry language in the past few years. Nearly every participant in the industry—investor-owned utilities (IOUs), municipalities, operators, vendors, consultants, analysts, and regulators—promotes the Smart Grid as the vehicle that will allow the industry to modernize its infrastructure and use the latest technologies, particularly in communications and real time operations, in order to be more efficient and reliable.

Market needs and expectations are different in every part of the world; even in the same geographical region, requirements and necessities can be quite different between market agents. In general, however, three main sets of drivers are common to all utilities. These three drivers are aimed to meet high-demand growth, increased need for reliability, and reduced carbon emissions.

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