Finding the right Standards for Smart Grids

The IEC developed tools to help find the right International Standard for Smart Grid with minimal trouble

By Morand Fachot

Smart Grids are seen as a necessary solution to overcome issues such as aging grid infrastructures, constantly expanding energy demand and the integration of a growing share of intermittent renewables into power networks. Smart Grids require a multitude of International Standards to ensure the various building blocks that cover all key areas are interoperable. The search for the right International Standards is made easier with IEC tools.

Smart Grid Standards Map
The Smart Grid Standards Map helps identify the standards that are needed for any part of the Smart Grid

Mapping Tool

Most International Standards needed for Smart Grids are developed by the IEC, a number are prepared also with other Standards Development Organizations (SDOs) or are compatible with their standards or recommendations.

The IEC has created a Smart Grid Standards Map that allows the quick identification of the relevant Standards. 

This Map gives an architecture view and a mapping view that show the relationship between International Standards and Smart Grid components.

It includes 16 clusters of components, such as automated metering infrastructure, commercial home automation, communication infrastructure, distributed energy, or distribution automation devices, which form the generic Smart Grid landscape. It also lists use cases. Clicking on a component or a use case opens a drop-down list of relevant standards, and hovering over a Standard gives its description.

In addition to the architecture view the mapping view shows a components/cluster view on the left side and a Standards view on the right side. The former gives a list of all the standards that are associated with a specific cluster/component, the latter a list of Standards arranged by number, with IEC Standards listed first.

This Mapping Tool makes it possible to identify quickly any given Standard in relation to its role within the Smart Grid.

Easily identifiable Smart Grid-relevant Standards

Some 300 IEC International Standards have been identified as relevant to Smart Grid infrastructures. They include so-called core Standards as well as Standards whose relevance to Smart Grid is seen as being high, medium or low.

A complete list of these International Standards by importance and relevant application, is available for download from the IEC Smart Grid website pages.

In addition to the degree of relevance, the list indicates the topic concerned, e.g. telecontrol, power lines, solar photovoltaic, wind power, electromagnetic compatibility (EMC) or distribution management. It also gives the relevant areas, e.g. distribution automation (DA), distributed energy resources (DER), advanced meter infrastructure (AMI), communication, storage or smart homes.

With its Smart Grid and smart electrification webpages, its list of Smart Grid-relevant Standards, the IEC provides the necessary background information and quick access to the relevant Standards to all utilities, companies and individuals involved in Smart Grids.

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Smart Grid Standards Map The Smart Grid Standards Map helps identify the standards that are needed for any part of the Smart Grid
Smart Grid Standards Map architecture Architecture view of the Smart Grid Standards Map