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Charging Stations, Microgrids, and More

Charging Stations, Smart Meters, and Microgrids...Oh My!

Maggie Kearns

January 15, 2018

In a world where there is a new technology or sustainability breakthrough each day, we have rounded up three popular trends to break down.

ELECTRICAL VEHICLE CHARGING STATIONS

If you live in an urban setting, it’s likely you’ve seen more and more electric charging stations popping up in parking lots and parking garages throughout your city over the last few years. There are many different charging networks out there and each has its own payment system and charging capabilities. Owners of electric vehicles can also install electric charging stations in their garages or use simpler charging stations that plug into regular wall outlets.

 

Having to worry about longer trips and finding charging stations along your route is not a worry with applications like PlugShare and ChargeHub. They can show you charging stations in your area and even help plan a route with charging stations along the way, exactly when you need them!

SMART METERS

Smart meters are small devices electric utility companies install in homes to obtain more accurate records of customer’s electricity usage. This has benefits for both the companies and the consumers. The smart meters provide a more accurate, quicker, and simpler way for electric utility companies to monitor consumer’s usage. This real-time data helps consumers make smarter decisions about electricity consumption and provides more accurate readings on usage, resulting in more accurate electrical usage bills for consumers.

 

For the electric utility companies, smart meters collect invaluable usage information providing real-time usage measurements, allowing companies to balance loads and avoid blackouts. Having a smart meter in each customers’ home also eliminates the need for technicians to make house visits each month to do meter readings, eliminating costs and increasing efficiency.

 

While there are great advantages to smart meters, like any new technology that transmits date, some consumers are concerned about privacy.

MICROGRIDS

Microgrids are electricity distribution systems which distribute electrical resources. They can be controlled by the main power network or work autonomously in case of electrical surges or blackouts.

 

Microgrids have a wealth of advantages. These advantages include energy efficiency, reduced environmental impact, reliability, cost efficiency, security, and network congestion relief. Additionally, microgrids give communities the option to locally produce their own energy rather than importing from power plants across the country, relieving the strain on national power supply.

 

A system of microgrids optimizes efficiency and can be a great asset in times of high electricity demands (hot days when everyone runs their A/C at full blast, etc.). Microgrids can take some of the strain away from the main power network and decrease the likelihood of a black out.

 

These are just a few of the biggest trends in energy today. Our industry experts can help with your current needs and help you to plan for the future.

 

Contact Kevin Henry, Director of Energy Services at khenry@msconsultants.com or (614) 898-7100 today to get started!