ITU Approves Standards for Smart Grids

21 December 2011: Three new smart grid standards on narrowband powerline communications (NB-PLC) have been defined and approved by the International Telecommunication Union (ITU) at the recent meeting of the ITU-T Study Group 15 on optical transport networks and access network infrastructures, held from 5-16 December 2011 in Geneva, Switzerland.

The new standards will enable cost-effective smart grid applications such as distribution automation, diagnostic and fault location, smart metering, demand response, energy management, smart appliances, grid-to-home communications and advanced recharging systems for electric vehicles. The standards are an ideal platform for smart grid applications because of their use of power lines as a communications medium which is under the direct control of power utilities. They incorporate electromagnetic compatibility and mitigation techniques defined in collaboration with ITU's Radiocommunication sector that ensure a high degree of protection of radio services from powerline communications emissions. Smart grids are considered integral to improving efficiency, and therefore reducing greenhouse gas emissions of, electricity production and consumption. [ITU News Release]