Transforming today’s electric grid into a smart grid is a monumental undertaking that faces significant challenges in a number of areas. However, the smart grid transition should not be carried out as a series of independent and isolated events. If it is, the smart grid may still be achieved ultimately – but not without large numbers of stops and starts, significant amounts of rework, unfavorable pushback from stakeholders, unnecessary costs, and unexpected delays. Experience sharing during the transition, to identify what works and what doesn’t, can help prevent many of these inefficiencies.

In a new white paper from the U.S. National Energy Technology Laboratory’s (NETL) Smart Grid Implementation Strategy initiative, performance feedback is reviewed as an important mechanism to improve experience sharing.

The paper describes a smart grid Performance Feedback Program (PFP) based around four fundamental areas:

  • Performance monitoring
  • Analysis
  • Results and validation
  • Communication and education.

The paper then proceeds to identify opportunities for identifying and sharing best practices and lessons learned. Possible solutions for some of the challenges facing the development and implementation of these performance feedback concepts are also discussed.

The paper states that the performance feedback and experience sharing concepts described are expected to be key components for achieving the smart grid vision, but it will take time for them to be understood, accepted, and implemented. Unless and until they are, less formal processes will be needed to enable an effective experience sharing process, and a case study process is offered to provide support during this interim period.

Click to view the full white paper.