BRIDGE Energy Group to Unveil Smart Grid Reference Architecture and Roadmap at 2009 Grid Interop

Approach builds on NIST Framework and Roadmap for Smart Grid Interoperability Standards answering the call from the GridWise® Architecture Council (GWAC) for an architecture that meets the challenges facing utilities

Nov 18, 2009, 16:37 ET from BRIDGE Energy Group

DENVER, Nov. 18 /PRNewswire/ -- BRIDGE Energy Group, a utility systems development and integration consulting practice, will present a new Smart Grid Reference Architecture (SGRA) at the Enhancing Interoperability session at Grid-Interop on Thursday, November 19. "Rather than use a proprietary framework that might limit future innovations," says Tony Giroti, Chairman and Managing Director, "we are inviting our industry colleagues to collaborate with us to refine an open standard and to develop a solutions architecture that ensures interoperability."

"The GridWise® Architecture Council co-sponsors the Grid-Interop meeting to encourage open discourse on smart grid interoperability challenges. The council is pleased to see this contribution from the BRIDGE Energy Group, Inc. which builds on the work of the council," says GWAC Chairman Ron Ambrosio.

The pioneers of Smart Grid deployment have already experienced the significant impact of exponentially increasing quantities of data flowing among utility back office systems, grid operations, and customers. "If you want to launch an effective Demand Response program, you would require: one pricing expert who understands dynamic pricing, two marketing experts, and 1,000 IT people," cautions Mark Gaines, Director of Customer Programs for San Diego Gas & Electric.

Recognizing that each utility IT department will not be afforded the resources to solve the problem independently, BRIDGE Energy Group has taken a holistic view of the complex integration problems facing the industry as it rolls out AMI/AMR, DR, and other Smart Grid programs. By adopting a cooperative model, IT groups--and the consulting resources that support them--can work together to leverage the NIST Framework and technology-agnostic SGRA. Integration teams will be able to leverage a variety of vendor solutions to develop specific designs suited to individual utilities' rollout strategies, regulatory, and infrastructure constraints.

BRIDGE anticipates an expanded role for IT to meet the new requirements of Smart Grid. Rather than reacting to new applications on an incremental basis, organizations can take a more proactive role as pilot programs test planning assumptions about real-time data flow and analytical requirements, automated load curtailment, and remote connect/disconnect. As the industry introduces other applications and communication technologies yet to be devised, the approach mitigates risk by applying metrics to better understand the depth of integration required.

A white paper, entitled An Integration Roadmap for Smart Grid - From Accidental Architecture to Smart Grid Architecture accompanies the announcement. Mapping directly to the interoperability issues outlined by the GWAC in its context-setting framework, the paper details the components of the vendor-neutral and technology-agnostic SGRA and discusses the business and IT transformation metrics required to attain the end-state of a secure and responsive enterprise architecture. The white paper may be found on the Bridge Energy website along with a request for feedback ( ).

"The systems which control today's grid operate with a degree of reliability and safety that goes far beyond mainstream enterprise applications. IT organizations must bring the same structure and rigor to their strategy, planning and design," Giroti maintains, "in their pivotal role as they integrate billing and monitoring systems with new applications supporting distributed generation, grid optimization, demand response, and building energy management."

About BRIDGE Energy Group

Headquartered in Marlborough, MA with offices in Austin, TX, Albany, NY, and Delhi, India; BRIDGE Energy Group serves as a trusted partner and advisor providing business and IT transformation strategy planning within the electric power industry as well as program management and implementation services to utility, ISO, and RTO clients across the US and Canada. More information can be found at