EDSA, a developer of power analytics solutions for the design, testing, and management of complex electrical power systems, and Viridity Energy, a smart grid company that transforms large energy consumers into virtual energy generators, have entered into a vital collaboration.
As part of the pact, the two companies will technically support a groundbreaking microgrid project, called RESCO, being deployed at the University of California, San Diego.
When operational, the effort will result in the world's first use of real-time software systems serving as the "Master Controller" in a live customer installation - an achievement that industry experts predicted would not be technologically feasible for at least five more years.
RESCO stands for "Renewable Energy Secure Communities," a project funded by the California Energy Commission (News - Alert), or "CEC." The project consists of UC San Diego demonstrating integration of on-site renewable energy production.
UC San Diego's campus-wide microgrid is recognized as one of the most technologically advanced in the world.
As part of the agreement, EDSA and Viridity Energy will combine their proven software solutions - EDSA's Paladin SmartGrid and Viridity Energy's VPower - to provide the power system optimization and energy market optimization capabilities necessary to ensure the reliability, energy efficiency, and cost efficiency of the UC San Diego microgrid.
Officials with EDSA said that the finished solution will combine the best attributes of both of its parent products, in order to allow UC San Diego to successfully manage electrical power generation and consumption.
This solution will also allow UC San Diego to eventually sell excess power to utilities, other energy users, or on the open market.
Company officials said that EDSA's master controller, integrated with Viridity Energy's optimization software, will minimize UC San Diego's energy use and emissions and schedule zero- or low-carbon energy production.
The software will also optimize energy efficiency and energy storage operations and manage the response of the microgrid to market energy prices on an hourly basis - all in a way that does not currently exist.
"While the UC San Diego microgrid is already very efficient, we think our experience with the EDSA master controller and Viridity Energy optimization software will increase our energy efficiency, further lower our carbon footprint and give us additional value by enabling our ability to buy and sell electricity when energy prices are most competitive," said Byron Washom, director of strategic energy initiatives at UC San Diego, in a statement.
Washom said that to create such an advanced level of real-time sophistication, intelligence will be encoded at every level of energy production, storage, consumption and distribution systems.
"In essence, we are a microcosm of the smart grid of the future that can be replicated by universities, cities and other large producers and consumers of electricity," he said.
"We are very excited to be partnering with Viridity Energy to bring the vision of a private, managed microgrid interfaced to the public grid to reality," said Mark A. Ascolese, Chairman and CEO of EDSA.
Ascolese said that the company shares industry experts' belief that there will be thousands of such microgrids in the future and the company is pleased to be at the forefront of this exciting new era in energy independence.
"Viridity Energy believes the promise of the Smart Grid will be realized by enabling large consumers of electricity to become pro-sumers, customers who can maximize economic gains from energy assets while delivering greater and greater environmental benefits," said Audrey Zibelman CEO of Viridity Energy.
Zibelman said that this demonstration project combining the unique technologies of VPower and Paladin SmartGrid allows the company to participate in proving that future is here today.
Anil Sharma is a contributing editor for TMCnet. To read more of Anil's articles, please visit his columnist page.
Edited by Kelly McGuire