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National Grid says it has assembled a team of the "best and brightest" technology and business solutions companies from across the U.S. to help test and deliver a smart grid project for more than 15,000 customers in Worcester, Mass.

According to National Grid, the team of vendors covers every aspect of a smart grid pilot, including smart meters, advanced communications technologies, in-home energy management tools, devices for electric system automation, customer outreach and education, as well as project management, integration and evaluation. As part of the project, the utility also will be studying full integration of renewable resources, installing electric vehicle charging stations and connecting energy storage to existing renewable projects.

“This assembly of organizations is our smart grid ‘dream team,’” says Cheri Warren, National Grid’s vice president of asset management. “They are the best and brightest in their respective disciplines and share our vision for delivering exceptional benefits for customers. We are excited to have them on board as we make progress toward full deployment of the pilot.”

National Grid’s pilot was approved by the Massachusetts Department of Public Utilities in August 2012. Since then, the company says it has been communicating with customers about the program and recently completed early installation of approximately 5,000 advanced meters to help test system communications and allow for equipment adjustments before full pilot launch, which is planned for early 2014.

Following is a complete list of companies and services being provided for National Grid’s smart grid pilot:
  • BRIDGE Energy Group and Ernst & Young - project management and integration services;
  • Itron - advanced metering infrastructure and meter data management, home area networking and advanced communication technology;
  • Cisco - advanced communication technology and network management;
  • General Electric - high-speed network using Wimax communication technology for communication among devices on the electricity distribution system;
  • Verizon Enterprise Solutions - advanced IP and wireless communications services;
  • IBM - the implementation of legacy system integration;
  • Wipro - Web development services;
  • CEIVA Energy, EcoFactor Simple Energy and Itron - in-home technology solutions;
  • GridMaven - end-to-end communications network monitoring and management solutions;
  • Navigant - evaluation services to monitor and measure the success of the pilot;
  • SmartMark Communications LLC - customer educational communications to enhance customer participation;
  • S&C Electric Co., G&W Electric Co. and Beckwith Electric Co. Inc. - advanced distribution automation for the electricity distribution system; and
  • Schweitzer Engineering Laboratories, Lindsey Manufacturing Co. and Power Delivery Products - advanced capacitor control and monitoring for the electric system.
(Click here to read what spokesperson Cheri Warren told Renew Grid about the utility's smart grid plans and customer outreach last September.)




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