Intelligent Utility Magazine Spring 2015
In This Issue
  • A data scientist answers
    Does your utility need a data scientist?
    Well, the answer to that question in our headline from C3 Energy's Chief Data Scientist Zico Kolter is yes---and no. You need the skills. You need the product they make. You need to understand how data science can impact revenue protection, predictive volt/VAR optimization and asset maintenance. You need better analytics for your data, but you don't have to have data scientists on your staff to...
  • From eclectic history to today’s electricity
    Augmented reality: from eclectic history to today’s electricity
     You might not have realized it, but augmented reality (AR) has been incorporated into your college football experience since 1998. Thanks to a company called Sportvision, the viewers at home know when a team gets a first down before viewers at the stadium. How? TV viewers see the line of scrimmage marker drawn across the screen. That's augmented reality-but not virtual reality.Virtual...
  • Traditional utilities meet a new solar wave
    SEPA prez brings in the light
    Julia Hamm, president and CEO of the Solar Electric Power Association (SEPA), opens up the utility industry to the sun—both literally and figuratively. She helms a non-profit with a singular focus: bring solar into a utility’s energy portfolio. That may sound simple, but the reality of it is a bit more complicated. After all, the solar industry is a more modern arm of the power industry, and the...
  • Insights from Con Edison
    Utilities: the future’s distribution system platform
    The New York State Public Service Commission (NYS PSC) took the bold step of launching the “Reforming the Energy Vision” (REV) proceeding in April 2014. They mapped an ambitious vision of the future for the state’s electricity system, giving more than 200 stakeholders the opportunity to participate in a collaborative process charting the “rules of the road” for the path forward. It’s been nine...
  • Follow this path to success
    Enabling a unified smart city vision in four easy steps
    The smart city concept revolves around more intelligent technology working together across traditionally disparate industries that “touch” under a municipal umbrella—power, water, transport, lighting—and that concept will evolve into a 12-25 billion dollar market in less than 10 years. So, how does a utility take full advantage of that growing market—and its growing demands—over that next decade...
  • IT, OT: Come together, right now (and reap the benefits)
    It’s no surprise that cost savings are important to American Municipal Power (AMP), a wholesale power supplier with strict government guidelines for protecting critical data and the information systems that help bring power and other services to 129 members across seven states, servicing more than 635,000 customers. When we noticed that less than 50 percent of its data backups succeeded on the...
  • Case studies in renewables integration and the evolving grid
    A look at power evolution
    By Lisa Wood.   Hardly a moment exists now where an American is not relying upon a device powered by electricity. In fact, the average American household owns an average of 25 consumer electronic products, almost all of which need to be charged or plugged in. Utilities continue to provide reliable, affordable, and increasingly clean electricity around the clock to customers, all the while...
  • Studying smart cities' systems within systems at MIT
    How well do you know your urban future?
    In case you didn’t get the memo, the Smart Cities lab at MIT—yes, that MIT—isn’t called the Smart Cities lab anymore. It’s now called the City Science Initiative, but it’s intent is still the same as it was with the original 2003 founding—namely, to find all the best, most efficient ways for humans to live together in urban environments. And how do you find those best, most efficient ways? You...
  • Utility2Utility: City of Modesto
    The City of Modesto is the county seat and largest city of Stanislaus County, California, and they cover the region’s water works. For this installment of the Utility2Utility series, we spoke with Debbie Sewell, customer services supervisor, about going mobile. How is the City of Modesto engaging customers via mobile? Sewell: By no means are we experts in mobile payments. We are experts...
  • Why utilities need to embrace new connected technology
    Smart thermostat market heats up
    By Stuart Lombard & Debbie Kimberly It should come as no surprise that the smart thermostat industry is heating up. According to Navigant Research, nearly 32 million smart thermostats will be installed worldwide by the year 2020. It is forecasted that global revenue from smart thermostats will grow from $85.5 million in 2013 to $1.4 billion in 2020. As smart thermostats become more ubiquitous...