Components of the eEnergy Vermont Project
The four components of Vermont's Smart Grid empower both the consumer and utility. Consumers will be able to monitor and manage their electrical use, while utilities increase reliability and efficiency through two-way communication.
AMI or Advanced Metering Infrastructure: The eEnergy Vermont Project will help install smart meters for a majority of Vermont customers by 2012, and will provide valuable insights to utilities and other stakeholders based on the experience.
Customer Site Automation: Smart meters and a statewide telecommunications network will allow customers to install in-home displays, HANs, smart appliances, and devices such as cost effective hyper-efficient water heaters so that they can be informed decision-makers and leverage new technologies to shift consumption from more expensive peak load periods.
Demand Response is the voluntary reduction of electricity demand in response to grid instability, high wholesale prices, or peak load. During times of peak demand, this will become beneficial because utilities can pull from the Grid instead of turning on additional and potentially less efficient generation. Smart grid increases the viability of demand response as a resource for meeting electric demand.
Substation and Grid Automation: For utilities, the advent of automated controls installed in substations, transformers and other power management equipment will mean increased efficiency and reduced costs, as maintenance schedules and warning signals become automated. The privately funded VELCO Fiber Backbone Project will extend fiber to utility distribution substations down to 34.5 kV SCADA and RTU upgrades will increase operational visibility to the grid status allowing operators to act upon data gathered through the AMI.