Smart grids - a new system paradigm

The background of this project is the stormy development of distributed and renewable generation and along with that the more recent attention for smart (distribution) grids. Clearly, smart grids are one of the major developments within the energy transition and are one of the pillars of reaching Europe’s climate and energy goals. Smart grids are important not only for the system integration of increasing amounts of decentralized generation and renewable energies, but will also incorporate storage, and demand side flexibility. In a sense smart grids present a new system paradigm and will transform the whole electricity sector. The structure of distribution networks, their operation and the tasks of the network companies as well as the interaction with demand, generation and expected new market actors will change. This raises many questions and discussions both technical and institutional, both in practice and in the literature.

Making the next steps – from IRIN to Triple-R

Research on a good institutional framework for smart grids is already taking place. And the researchers behind this project are actively involved in such research, more specifically, the project Innovative Regulation for Intelligent Networks (IRIN). IRIN aimed to contribute to the next period of regulation of the electricity networks such that it promotes the development of smart grids while at the same time protecting the interests of consumers. This project aims to make the next steps.