Energy Internet and eVehicles Overview

Governments around the world are wrestling with the challenge of how to prepare society for inevitable climate change. To date most people have been focused on how to reduce Green House Gas emissions, but now there is growing recognition that regardless of what we do to mitigate against climate change the planet is going to be significantly warmer in the coming years with all the attendant problems of more frequent droughts, flooding, sever storms, etc. As such we need to invest in solutions that provide a more robust and resilient infrastructure to withstand this environmental onslaught especially for our electrical and telecommunications systems and at the same time reduce our carbon footprint.

Linking renewable energy with high speed Internet using fiber to the home combined with autonomous eVehicles and dynamic charging where vehicle's batteries are charged as it travels along the road, may provide for a whole new "energy Internet" infrastructure for linking small distributed renewable energy sources to users that is far more robust and resilient to survive climate change than today's centralized command and control infrastructure. These new energy architectures will also significantly reduce our carbon footprint. For more details please see:

Using autonomous eVehicles for Renewable Energy Transportation and Distribution: and

Free High Speed Internet to the Home or School Integrated with solar roof top:

High level architecture of Internet Networks to survive Climate Change:

Architecture and routing protocols for Energy Internet:

How to use Green Bond Funds to underwrite costs of new network and energy infrastructure:

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

How the Internet will revolutionize Smart Meters and Smart Grids

[As many of you know I have long complained about the current generation of smart meters. They are too focused on the needs of the electrical utility in terms of minimizing peak load, and have little benefit to the consumer or the environment. In most electrical systems the utility owns and controls the meter. This reminds me of the days when the telephone company owned the telephone which greatly inhibited innovation. It wasn't until regulators forced the telcos to allow direct interconnection of devices to the network that computer and networking revolution took off. I think we face the same challenge with Smart meters. In Germany companies can arrange to interconnect their own government approved meter directly. And as you can see from this article it is already creating innovation. I am also see that Google's new power meter is all about bypassing the utility. Most exciting is the IETF is now undertaking development of protocols for Smart Grids.&nb sp; The IETF has always been the per-eminent standards body because of its insistence on meritocracy rather than politics to drive standards and a can-do culture of "rough consensus and working code". The IETF and the Internet developed the essential protocols that freed us from the tyranny of the telco and their walled gardens, hopefully they will do the same thing for the utilities and smart grids, Some excerpts -- BSA]

Why Google’s PowerMeter Gadget Partnership Is a Big Power Play

With Google’s endless projects — from book search to a browser killer to Blogger — you’re probably wondering why I’m so excited about a new partnership deal for the company’s PowerMeter energy management tool. Well, here’s why: For the first time, consumers can now access PowerMeter via a gadget called the TED-5000, made by startup Energy Inc., and users don’t need to go through their utility or have a smart meter (a digital two-way electricity meter) installed to access it. In other words, Google has finally bypassed the utility with PowerMeter, which is an important step for both bringing consumer energy management products to the mainstream, and pushing utilities to more quickly embrace information technology networks and broadband.

From a posting by Richard Shockey on David Farber's IPer list

Subject: The IETF and the SmartGrid

The general internet community needs to be aware of activities in North
America that directly relate to the use of IETF protocols in the Electric
Utility industry. This activity is generally referred to as the SmartGrid.
Though the issues immediately deal with technical and policy decisions in
the US and Canada, the SmartGrid concept is gaining significant momentum in
Europe and Asia as well.

The SmartGrid has many definitions but as a practical matter it is a
substantial re-architecture of the data communications networks that
utilities use to maintain the stability and reliability of their power
grids. Many of the requirements for the SmartGrid in North America came out
of the 2003 North East power outage which demonstrated a substantial lack of
investment in Utility IT systems.

Of particular note, is the desire by utilities to extend the reach of their
communications networks directly to the utility meter and beyond ultimately
into the customer premise itself. This is generally referred to as the
Advanced Meter Interface (AMI). One of the use cases driving this
requirement is the next generation of plug-in hybrid electric vehicles. The
utilities, correctly IMHO, want to precisely control the timing of how these
vehicles are recharged so not to create a unique form of DOS attack and take
out the grid when everyone goes home at night. This is a principal use case
in 6lowpan ( ID below ). Increasingly energy flows are becoming
bi-directional creating needs for more computational intelligence and
capability at the edge.

What is going on? Why should the IETF community care?

The United States Government, as part of the Energy Independence and
Security Act of 2007 gave the National Institute of Standards and Technology
( NIST ) principal responsibility "to coordinate development of a framework
that includes protocols and model standards" for the SmartGrid.

After several meetings sponsored by NIST in recent months, NIST released a
preliminary report. Several folks from the IETF community attended those
meetings, myself included. There multiple troubling stories about how those
meetings were organized but I'll leave those tales to others.

One of the requests from NIST and the SmartGrid community was a list of Core
Internet protocols that NIST could refer to. Fred Baker has been working on
that task. ( below )

Myself and others are deeply concerned by how this effort is developing.
There is no current consensus on what the communications architecture of the
SmartGrid is or how IP actually fits into it.

The Utility Industry does not understand the current IPv4 number exhaust
problem and the consequences of that if they want to put a IP address on
every Utility Meter in North America.

What is equally troubling is that many of the underlying protocols that
utilities wish to deploy are not engineered for IPv6. We have an example of
that in a recent ID.

Obviously, there are significant CyberSecurity issues in the SmartGrid
concept and NIST has produced a useful document outlining the requirements
and usecases.

How the SmartGrid interfaces with or bridges with Home Area or Enterprise
Local Area networks is unclear, to put it mildly.

I want to use this message to encourage the community to read the attached
documents and get involved in this effort as appropriate. Additional NIST
documents will be published shortly with a open public comment period.

I strongly urge members of the IETF community to participate in this comment
period and lend its expertise as necessary.

It's useful and important work.


Title : Core Protocols in the Internet Protocol Suite
Author(s) : F. Baker
Filename : draft-baker-ietf-core-03.txt
Pages : 32
Date : 2009-10-03

This note attempts to identify the core of the Internet Protocol Suite. The
target audience is NIST, in the Smart Grid discussion, as they have
requested guidance on how to profile the Internet Protocol Suite. In
general, that would mean selecting what they need from the picture presented

A URL for this Internet-Draft is:

What Cisco Can Learn From A Yello Strom Smart Grid Pilot

Networking giant Cisco could learn a whole lot from its partnership with German utility Yello Strom, which I once called the coolest utility in the world, and which focuses heavily on smart grid consumer hardware and the use of the Internet for the power grid. While Cisco included Yello Strom as a partner in its smart grid announcement last month, the networking company announced more details about a 70-home pilot project using Yello Strom’s sophisticated “Sparzähler” or smart meter this morning. If Cisco aims to some day develop a Linksys-based home energy management product, the project detailed today could provide some important information for that effort.

Yello Strom is also one of the only utilities I’ve heard of that has developed and sells its own sophisticated smart meters. In July Martin Vesper, Yello Strom’s executive director, told us that the company looked at the smart meters that were already available on the market, and found only tools that focused on helping energy efficiency from a utility perspective. Not seeing anything they liked, or anything that would get consumers excited, they developed their own, which looks like it would be at home in the window of an Apple store, is built off of Microsoft Windows CE, and has both a small web server and client inside. Yello’s meter is a lot more sophisticated than other smart meters.

This unusual environment — a sophisticated, innovative smart meter, and potentially a home broadband connection — will be a very interesting environment within which Cisco can run a pilot program. It could enable Cisco to get an interesting perspective for how it could roll out any type of Linksys, broadband-based, home energy management product, which Cisco has actively been looking into

Are Returns from Smart Grid Investments Too Weak for VCs?

The smart grid might be the Megan Fox of cleantech right now (hot), but will venture-backed smart grid startups be able to deliver the type of returns that VCs commonly like (somewhere around 10 times their investment)? Not really, suggested venture capitalist Vinod Khosla at the AlwaysOn GoingGreen conference in Sausalito, Calif., earlier this month (watch the video clip here). During a panel on the first morning of the event Khosla called smart grid investments from a VC perspective “interesting, but marginal,” at “10 to 15 percent.”

Indeed, Khosla hasn’t made any direct investments in bringing information technology to the power grid over the years, despite the fact that he played a fundamental role in the development of information technology — as co-founder of Sun Microsystems and an investor with Kleiner Perkins funding broadband firms like Juniper.

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