Case Studies: Chapter 1-4

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Chapter 1: What’s the Buzz on Smart Grids?
1.How do smart grids differ from the current electricity infrastructure in the United States?
One of the main differences between smart grids and present electricity infrastructure in the U.S. is that smart grids provide electricity by utilizing digital technology in order to save energy, to reduce costs, and to increase reliability as oppose to present electricity grids provides electricity which is obsoleted and inefficient (Laudon & Laudon, 2012).

Another difference is that current electricity grids do not deliver any information about how people utilize energy which makes even more difficult to create approaches to distributions in the efficient manner (Laudon & Laudon, 2012). Since current electricity grids do not provide useful information, distributors and consumers may not be able to make proper decisions about how they use energy efficiently (Laudon & Laudon, 2012). Conversely, smart grids provide information to both energy provides and consumers so that they can make decisions for better efficiency (U.S. Department of Energy, 2012).

Additionally, smart grids deliver information from the house to the power provider and can monitor the electricity usage to lower the cost to the consumers and save energy by using them more efficiently (Laudon & Laudon, 2012). 2.What management, organization, and technology issues should be considered when developing a smart grid?

The management issues that need to be considered during the development of smart grid would be to convince the consumer to switch over to the smart grid system (Laudon & Laudon, 2012). The need for smart grid must be relayed to the consumer and shown how the utilization of the smart grid will benefit both the power provider and the consumer by being able to utilize power more efficiently (Laudon & Laudon, 2012). Consumers will like to have their privacy protected, and the management of the power provider must assure their consumers not to feel intruded by the power company but focus on the benefits of the smart grid system such as lowering their electricity bills though the information feedback system that can relay how the energy is being used and the ability to analyze it (Laudon & Laudon, 2012).

The organizational issue that the smart grid system will have to overcome would be the high cost of the smart grid system to be put into place. The meter that needs to be installed in each household may range from $250 to $500 per unit (Laudon & Laudon, 2012). Some consumers are not willing to initially spend the money to have the meter installed especially when they know that to save energy they need to turn off lights and other appliances or electronics when they are not being used (Laudon & Laudon, 2012). Additionally, once the smart grid system has been successfully been set up, the power provider may risk losing revenue as more consumers are able to use their energy more efficiently (Laudon & Laudon, 2012).

The technology issue would be the fact that in the initial installation of the system, it will be time and money consuming on both the consumer and the power provider (Laudon & Laudon, 2012). A completely new system must be put into place and replace the old system. With the advancement of technology, this may become vulnerable to forms of cybercrimes as with any other advanced forms of technology may be attacked (Laudon & Laudon, 2012). Also, the complicated technology may not be user friendly to everyone especially to the elders or someone who is not as technologically aware. 3.What challenge to the development of smart grids do you think is most likely to hamper their development?

The challenges that smart grids face that may hinder their development would be the fact that first of all the startup of the system is very expensive and time consuming (Laudon & Laudon, 2012). The complete infrastructure must be changed in order for smart grids to be fully replaced (Laudon & Laudon, 2012). It is...
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