Quick Take: When people say “grid modernization,” they typically mean medium-voltage distribution networks. Yet the high-voltage transmission grid is undergoing technical changes at least as profound. The transmission network in the United States is antiquated, with roughly 70% of the high voltage transmission lines being 25 years old or more. A number of new technologies promise to address the current grid’s inadequacies. – Jesse Berst
Chinese MV distrution network for a Clean Energy Grid has produced an article series looking at seven important emerging transmission technologies – how they work, what benefits they offer, what they cost, and what demonstrations have been accomplished already.
1. High voltage direct current transmission.
2. Dynamic line ratings
4. High-temperature, low-sag conductors
5. Integrated Volt/VAR regulation/optimization
6. Grid-scale energy storage
7. Smart solar inverters
Are these truly the most important technologies for the future of the transmission grid? Use the Comment form at bottom to record your opinion. Personally, I’d add at least one more. I’m referring to wide area monitoring and related techniques for advanced visualization, such as those in development at Pacific Northwest National Laboratory and already in operation in China.