Australia’s first commercial-scale smart grid (based in Newcastle, New South Wales) is a demonstration project that will lead to Australia-wide advances in energy management. The Australian Government has committed up to $100 million to develop the Smart Grid, Smart City demonstration project in partnership with the energy sector. This initiative will gather robust information about the costs and benefits of smart grids to inform future decisions by government, electricity providers, technology suppliers and consumers across Australia.

Hildebrand’s role is critical to the success of the project.

Hildebrand is responsible for the consumer portal and advance in-home display development. We are integrating with all of the Ausgrid operational systems to provide an end-to-end solution for Ausgrid and two retailers. Ausgrid has licensed the Hildebrand smart platform and is deploying it within their data centre infrastructure.

The project goals are:

Improved reliability

A smart grid can improve the reliability of electricity services for consumers by identifying and resolving faults on the electricity grid, better managing voltage and identifying infrastructure that requires maintenance.

Informed householders

Smart grids can let consumers know how much electricity they are using in their homes and offices. Smart applications can also alert them to how they can change their energy consumption during peak periods in order to save money on their electricity bills.

Demand management

By encouraging consumers to avoid using electricity at the busiest – and most expensive – times, smart grids can help manage peak demand, reducing the chance of black-outs or the need for Australia to build more power plants.

Integrate renewables

By helping to integrate renewable energy sources such as solar and wind power into the electricity grid, smart grids will make it easier for schools, businesses and homes around Australia to share the electricity they make through the smart network.

Reduced carbon emissions

If smart grid applications deliver to their potential and are adopted around Australia they could deliver a reduction of 3.5 megatonnes of carbon emissions per annum.