Smart Grid Demonstration Project

Twenty-three electric cooperatives participated in NRECA’s $68 milliSmart Grid mapon Smart Grid Demonstration Project (SGDP), half of which was funded by a U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) stimulus grant. The grant cycle is ending, but for the participants, the journey continues. Research results will aid electric co-ops’ smart grid planning and decision making, and new strategic initiatives have been spawned in the areas of cybersecurity and economic cost/benefit modeling.

Reports and Articles

Sharing information about the experiences and outcomes of the Smart Grid Demonstration Project is critical in CRN’s view, in order to convey the groundbreaking effort by the participants as well as to support the benefits of learning by other cooperatives and the industry as a whole. In November 2013, CRN produced the first detailed reports on the SGDP for DOE. As further demonstration results became available, CRN produced a second edition to these reports, issued to DOE in May 2014. CRN has also produced a series of TechSurveillance articles to assist in the dissemination of the information on the SGDP. These articles are high level, and intended to give co-op CEOs and other decision-makers an overview of the main events and lessons learned from each aspect of the Demonstration.

Below are the CRN SGDP reports and articles:

collapse Category : - Introduction - ‎(1)
TS_Intro_to_SGDP_June-2014.pdfTechSurveillance: "Brave New World: Electric Cooperatives Plot a Wide Array of Smart Grid Technologies"
collapse Category : Advanced Metering Infrastructure (AMI) Demonstration ‎(3)
NRECA_DOE_AMI-Based-Load-Research-KIUC-Demo.pdfFinal Report (May 2014): "AMI-Based Load Research - KIUC Demonstration: Confirming the Value of AMI"
NRECA_DOE_AMI_KIUC_b.pdfInitial Findings Report (November 2013): "AMI-Based Load Research - KIUC Demonstration: Confirming the Value of AMI"
TS_SGDP_Load_Research_AMI_June_2014.pdfTechSurveillance: "Smart Grid Bring Load Research to Kaua'i Island Utility Cooperatve"
collapse Category : Communication Systems Testing - Case Study ‎(3)
NRECA_DOE_Washington-St-Tammany-Case-Study.pdfFinal Report (May 2014): “Washington-St. Tammany Case Study: Stress-Testing Designs Before Deployment“
NRECA_DOE_Washington_St_Tammany_a.pdfInitial Findings Report (November 2013): “Washington-St. Tammany Case Study: Stress-Testing Designs Before Deployment”
TS_SGDP_WST-Stress-Testing_June-2014.pdfTechSurveillance: "Bulletproffing a Communications Upgrade: the Case of Washington-St. Tammany Electric Cooperative"
collapse Category : Conservation Voltage Reduction (CVR) Demonstration ‎(3)
NRECA_DOE_Costs_Benefits_of_CVR.pdfFinal Report (May 2014): “Costs and Benefits of Conservation Voltage Reduction: CVR Warrants Careful Examination“
NRECA_DOE_Costs_Benefits_of_CVR_b.pdfInitial Findings Report (November 2013): “Costs and Benefits of Conservation Voltage Reduction: CVR Warrants Careful Examination”
TS_SGDP_CVR_June_2014.pdfTechSurveillance: “Conservation Voltage Reduction in the Smart Grid Era: Electric Co-ops Measure the Value“
collapse Category : Consumer Acceptance of Smart Grid Technology ‎(2)
NRECA_DOE_Consumer_Acceptance.pdfFinal Report (May 2014): “Building Consumer Acceptance to Maximize the Value of Grid Modernization“
TS_SGDP_Consumer_Acceptance_Nov_2014.pdfTechSurveillance: “Consumer Acceptance: Key to Realizing the Benefits of Smart Grid Technology”
collapse Category : Demand Response ‎(3)
NRECA_DOE_Demand-Response.pdfFinal Report (May 2014): “Demand Response: Testing the Theoretical Basis for DR“
NRECA_DOE_DR_CPP_a.pdfInitial Findings Report (November 2013): Demand Response and Critical Peak Pricing: Testing the Theoretical Basis for DR“
TS_SGDP_Assessment_of_DR_Sept_2014.pdfTechSurveillance: “Toward Better Assessment of Demand Response: Co-ops Conduct Pilot Tests“
collapse Category : Energy Storage Demonstration ‎(2)
NRECA_DOE_Energy_Storage.pdfFinal Report (May 2014): “Energy Storage—The Benefits of ‘Behind-the-Meter’ Storage“
TS_SGDP_Energy_Storage_June_2014.pdfTechSurveillance: “Minnesota Co-ops Test ‘Behind-the-Meter’ Energy Storage Technologies“
collapse Category : Meter Data Management (MDM) Demonstration ‎(3)
NRECA_DOE_MDM.pdfFinal Report (May 2014): “Multi-Tenant Meter Data Management: A Systems Approach to Hierarchical Value“
NRECA_DOE_Multi_Tenant_MDM_d.pdfInitial Findings Report (November 2013):Multi-Tenant Meter Data Management: A Systems Approach to Hierarchical Value“
TS_SGDP_MDM_June_2014.pdfTechSurveillance: “Harnessing the Information Flood: a Multi-Cooperative Approach to Meter Data Management“
collapse Category : Prepay ‎(3)
NRECA-DOE_Prepaid_Metering.pdfFinal Report (June 2014): “Conservation Impact of Prepaid Metering: Motivation and Incentives for Pre-Pay Systems“
NRECA_DOE_Prepaid_Metering_c.pdfInitial Findings Report (November 2013): Conservation Impact of Prepaid Metering: Motivation and Incentives for Pre-Pay Systems“
TS_SGDP_PrePay_Sept_2014.pdfTechSurveillance: “Electric Co-ops Launch Prepayment Programs Using Smart Grid“
collapse Category : Smart Feeder Switching Demonstration ‎(3)
NRECA_DOE_Costs_Benefits_of_SFS.pdfFinal Report (May 2014): “Costs and Benefits of Smart Feeder Switching: Quantifying the Operating Value of SFS“
NRECA_DOE_Costs_Benefits_SFS_a.pdfInitial Findings Report (November 2013): “Costs and Benefits of Smart Feeder Switching: Quantifying the Operating Value of SFS”
TS_SGDP_Smart_Feeder_Switching_June_2014.pdfTechSurveillance: “Self-Healing System: Electric Co-ops Explore the Value of Smart Feeder Switching“
collapse Category : Telecommunications Demonstration ‎(3)
NRECA_DOE_Communications.pdfFinal Report (May 2014): “Communications: The Smart Grid’s Enabling Technology“
NRECA_DOE_Communications_b.pdfInitial Findings Report (November 2013): “Communications: The Smart Grid’s Enabling Technology”
TS_SGDP_Telecommunications_June-2014.pdfTechSurveillance: “Telecommunications: the Linchpin for Smart Grid Success“
collapse Category : Water Heater Demand Respond (DR) Demonstration ‎(3)
NRECA_DOE_DCEC-DR-Capability.pdfFinal Report (May 2014): “Delaware County Electric Cooperative: DR Capability and Predictability“
NRECA_DOE_DCEC_Demand-Response_a.pdfInitial Findings Report (November 2013): Delaware County Electric Cooperative: DR Capability and Predictability
TS_SGDP_DCEC_WH_DR_June-2014.pdfTechSurveillance: ‘Turning Water Heaters into a Marketable Demand Resource: Delaware County Electric Cooperative’s Test‘

Managing Technology Change to Gain Customer Acceptance

Communicators’ Toolkit for a Smart Meter Roll-Out

Electric cooperatives that deployed new, consumer-facing technologies such as smart meters as part of NRECA’s nationwide Smart Grid Demonstration Project (SGDP) found that to realize full value from the investment, communications about the new technology with members and stakeholders must be carefully managed. These experiences brought the risks and challenges of technology change into sharp focus and also crystalized some successful approaches that have wide applicability across the electric co-op community. Strategic communications planning can promote member acceptance and ultimate project success. Maximizing the benefits of Smart Grid technologies–demand response, time-of-use rates, critical peak pricing, prepayment programs and energy management tools–-for both co-op and members requires proactive communication. The good news is that CRN now offers an online repository containing best practices, communication templates and other tools gleaned from SGDP experiences. This Communicators’ Toolkit can spare electric cooperatives from “re-inventing the wheel” when it comes to engaging members and gaining buy-in for technology change. In short, the Communicators’ Toolkit will help an electric co-op build the level of member trust necessary for its deployment to go smoothly and its technology investment to pay off.