Schneider Electric called on energy decision makers to prioritise digital upgrades to realise the potential of sustainable, resilient, efficient and flexible Grids of the Future.
The urgent call comes as world leaders gather at COP28 in Dubai to accelerate climate action while at the same time, key players in the electric power industry meet at Enlit Europe 2023 in Paris, France, to discuss transformative solutions for Europe’s electricity systems.
Schneider Electric’s experts attending Enlit Europe 2023 argue the outdated grid infrastructure is holding back the energy transition and propose that increased network automation on smart grids run by smart electric utility companies can shape the future of a low-carbon energy sector.
“The real challenge of the energy transition is increasing network output and efficiency, doing that in the right way by connecting more renewables to the grid, and ensuring emissions don’t rise in parallel,” said Frederic Godemel, executive vice president of the Power Systems and Services division at Schneider Electric. “We simply aren’t moving fast enough toward the flexible, digitalised electricity grids to enable this, despite already having the connected equipment and software technologies to do so. Government and industry leaders should respond to this call to action: upgrade or risk failing to meet our net zero goals.”
At Enlit 2023, Schneider Electric is unveiling new innovations that enable electric utility companies to deploy agile grid digitalisation and offer better collaboration between all actors in the electricity value chain. They include:
• RM AirSeT – new pure air solution for France’s national electrical distribution network: AirSeT’s pure air technology eliminates the use of the potent SF6 greenhouse gas from medium-voltage (MV) electrical equipment. RM AirSeT is the first of a new generation of gas-insulated switchgear piloted on France’s MV distribution network. As part of its certification process, Enedis, Europe’s largest distribution network operator, has selected Schneider Electric as one supplier of SF6-free equipment for substations on the French network.
• EcoStruxure Microgrid Flex: An industry first that standardises and simplifies microgrid configuration for faster implementation, drastically reducing project timelines. After an initial launch earlier this year, Microgrid Flex is set to expand to additional select markets in Europe.
• EcoStruxure Transformer Expert: An easy-to-deploy IoT sensors and software analytics subscription for oil transformers that helps monitor transformer health and optimise maintenance through condition-based monitoring.
• EcoStruxure Power Automation System: The PowerLogic P7 protection relay, its digital twin, and the latest EcoStruxure Power Automation System Engineering and EcoStruxure System Management tools help create a virtual representation of a substation that spans its lifecycle for more reliable electrical grids, reduced maintenance costs, and optimised power management.
• New cloud-based EcoStruxure Distributed Energy Resource (DERMS): Now available on Microsoft Azure, EcoStruxure DERMS manages distributed energy resources (electric vehicles, energy storage and rooftop solar) to meet rapidly increasing capacity demand and enable rapid deployments with flexible customer journeys.
• New era of Digital Grid platform: With the latest releases of EcoStruxure Advanced Distribution Management System (ADMS) due out in January 2024 and EcoStruxure ArcFM, the digital grid platform is one step closer to a converged, data-centric architecture using a single network model to boost efficiency, reduce costs, improve reliability and grid efficiency.