IBM is announcing its participation in two new smart grid projects. In one, IBM is partnering with Cisco in delivering smart meters and energy management systems to 500 households in Amsterdam in hopes of helping residents become more efficient in their energy consumption. In another project, IBM is working with energy delivery company Oncor in swapping out 3.4 million standard energy meters with newer ones.
IBM, which is one of a growing number of technology vendors looking
to put greater intelligence into the various infrastructures that run
today's world, is wielding its software prowess in two smart grid
projects designed to make power delivery more efficient.
IBM officials announced July 15 that they are working with Oncor
Electric Delivery in that company's deployment of advanced power
meeting systems in Texas. IBM is the lead systems integrator for the
deployment, and will use its SAFE (Solution Architecture for Energy and
That announcement came a day after IBM and Cisco Systems said they
were working with a Dutch utility on a pilot program in Amsterdam to
create an energy management system that will give residents more
information about their power consumption.
The projects are part of a larger push by IBM, Cisco and others to
use technology to make the basic infrastructures of the world-from
power delivery to water use to roads-more energy efficient and
IBM has an initiative dubbed "Smarter Planet"
that is aimed at reducing carbon emissions around the world by putting
greater intelligence into the infrastructures. Cisco also is making
moves in this area. The company earlier this year rolled out its Smart Grid strategy
of using its networking capabilities to help make the delivery of power more efficient.
Schneider Electric, parent company of American Power Conversion, is making putting intelligence into buildings
-from data centers to factories to offices-a key priority.
Such efforts also make fiscal sense for vendors, who see such
infrastructure projects as key targets for governmental stimulus
"Now that more than half of the global population lives in
cities, we need to acknowledge that achieving a sustainable future lies
in our urban centers," Guido Bartels, general manager of IBM's Global
Energy and Utilities business, said in a statement in announcing the
Amsterdam project. "Smarter energy initiatives are foundational for
other critical infrastructure systems that make up a city."
For the Oncor project in Texas, IBM is bringing its SAFE software framework and products from its Maximo
, Tivoli and Data Power lines into the mix to make the IT solution more secure and reliable.
In the Texas project, Oncor is replacing 3.4 million standard energy
meters with advanced meter systems. The project is scheduled to be
completed by 2012.
In Amsterdam, IBM and Cisco are working with the utility Nuon in a
pilot program that is part of the city's larger Smart City strategy to
make better, more efficient use of power and water.
In the pilot, 500 households will get new smart meters and home
energy management systems, which will give the residents a better
understanding of their energy use with hopes of changing their behavior.
"Giving the citizens of Amsterdam more information and better
control over their energy use will cut down on costs and consumption as
well as reduce their overall impact on the environment," Martin de
Beer, senior vice president of Cisco's Emerging Technologies Group,
said in a statement.