IEEE Improves Power Grid Performance with IEEE P1547.8 Standard

June 29, 2010 by Jeff Shepard

IEEE announced IEEE P1547.8, a draft standard establishing a common technical platform for distributed resources interconnection applications. The proposed standard expands upon IEEE 1547, while incorporating industry and National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) recommendations for improved interconnection performance functionality. It also addresses energy storage challenges coming into play across the distributed resources and Smart Grid industries. Ratification of IEEE P1547.8, which is sponsored by the IEEE Standards Coordinating Committee 21 (SCC21), is targeted for calendar year 2012.

"With IEEE 1547, the energy and utility industries gained a stable, robust foundation for the further construction and expansion of distributed resource networks. With more renewable energy sources coming online, storage capabilities are becoming increasingly important and need to be addressed sooner rather than later," said Dick DeBlasio, program manager at the National Renewable Energy Lab facility of the U.S. Department of Energy, and IEEE Smart Grid liaison to the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST). "By incorporating support for emerging storage technologies, as well as other industry-driven recommendations, IEEE P1547.8 future-proofs the original framework by both extending current functionality and laying the groundwork for future advancements."

As a complement to the IEEE 1547 standard, IEEE P1547.8 establishes a common technical platform to address functionality for the interconnection of distributed resources across the power grid. The standard provides greater support for intermittent renewable energy sources, and more flexible use of inverters such as found in home solar power systems, enabling easier and more robust connections to the grid. It also addresses energy storage devices, hybrid generation-storage systems (ES-DER), and ES-DER aspects of plug-in electric vehicles (PEV), as well as taking into account a variety of industry-driven recommendations. IEEE P1547.8 is targeted to distributed resource owners, interconnection contractors, equipment manufacturers, system integrators, area electric power system owners, planners and operators, and regulatory agencies.

In August 2009, NIST established an initial set of priority actions plans (PAPs) for developing standards necessary to build an interoperable Smart Grid. IEEE P1547.8 will support NIST PAP07 Energy Storage Interconnection Guidelines.

"Energy storage is essential in the evolution of the power grid particularly for renewable energy resources and to improve electrical power system performance," said George Arnold, NIST’s National Coordinator for Smart Grid Interoperability. "With P1547.8, IEEE is playing a vital role by moving the industry forward in the area of Smart Grid energy storage."

"As the leading intellectual powerhouse globally for Smart Grid information and expertise, IEEE is dedicated to driving technology advancements needed for Smart Grid infrastructure development," said Judith Gorman, Managing Director, IEEE Standards Association. "IEEE P1547.8’s forward-looking scope and expanded implementation strategies provide utility operators with a broader array of options for meeting changing power demands, as well as facilitating greater access to distributed resources and renewable energy, which will play a key role as the Smart Grid continues to evolve and mature."

IEEE has more than 100 standards and standards in development relevant to smart grid, including the over 20 IEEE standards named in the NIST Framework and Roadmap for Smart Grid Interoperability Standards.