Qualcomm teams for the smart grid AI

Qualcomm teams for the smart grid AI

Business news |
By Nick Flaherty

Qualcomm Technologies has teamed up with a subsidiary of the Italian Enel Group on digital technologies including 5G and AI to make the electricity grid more reliable, flexible, resilient and easier to maintain.

The collaboration will see Gridspertise using its Quantum Edge (QEd) device for digital substations in the US. The QEd edge device includes distributed computing resources to run key grid functionalities on the edge, increasing reliability of the network and improving service quality for end users.

In particular, QEd allows applications to be run for all the most important network automation functions: asset health and performance monitoring, loss minimization, fault location identification and service restoration, real-time control, power quality monitoring, metering data management and much more. The device contains a built-in AI engine to support edge applications, including AI-powered predictive maintenance, security, operation surveillance and safety.

The device supports 5G connectivity as well as fibre optic, and is retrofit compatible with existing assets. But it is also designed to add new functions such as power flow analysis and prediction, detection of critical conditions, dispatching and control of distributed energy resources, storage and electric vehicles.

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“Enel manages more than 1.2 million secondary substations around the world, out of which roughly half a million are remote controlled. We are looking forward to reaping the benefits of deploying a technology as innovative as QEd that enhances legacy infrastructure with an all-in-one solution, avoiding costly rebuilds, while minimizing maintenance expenditures and environmental impact. [We are] very proud that Enel will drive the field testing of this device at scale, showing once again its leadership in deploying resilient, participatory and sustainable power grids towards a full electric future,” said Antonio Cammisecra, Head of Enel Global Infrastructure and Networks.

“The launch of QEd – Quantum Edge device represents a milestone for our newly-created company and also a leap forward in the digitalization, efficiency, flexibility and reliability of the networks,” said Robert Denda, CEO of Gridspertise and Head of Innovation and Industrialization at Enel’s Global Infrastructure and Networks. “QEd not only helps to reduce physical components in secondary substations, enhancing grid digitalization and reliability, but for the first time in the industry, it provides a single, scalable platform that supports a large ecosystem of customizable applications to help DSOs tackle the multiple challenges the networks may encounter.”

The collaboration provides a framework that could lead to the creation of new solutions for energy asset monitoring and advanced applications for grid management using 5G, edge computing, security and cloud-based services.

Gridspertise brings its expertise from Enel with first-hand experience of running advanced grids in various countries. It will provide data analytics models specialized for grid operations, predictive maintenance, design of software solutions in platform, early alerting services based on AI algorithms, as well as a unique environment for grid and data access on large scale field-testing.

The smart grid solutions and services that could be created through this collaboration will be commercialized globally by Gridspertise to utilities and energy service providers looking for scalable solutions that can be easily deployed with efficient return on investment.

“Strategic collaborations, such as the one with Qualcomm Technologies, enable us to promote a leap forward in network infrastructure digitalization for utilities all around the world, combining the most advanced technologies designed by Gridspertise with those developed by its ecosystem of partners,” added Denda.

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“Qualcomm Technologies is excited to collaborate with Gridspertise to unleash the next generation of utilities. As Qualcomm Technologies diversifies with new opportunities powering the connected intelligent edge – Gridspertise represents the type of strategic partners we will collaborate with across IoT to continue to build a transformative ecosystem that addresses non-linear changes now and in the future,” said Jeffery Torrance, senior vice president, product management, Connected Smart Systems at Qualcomm Technologies.

“We are delighted to be supporting Gridspertise, headquartered in Europe” said Enrico Salvatori, senior vice president and president Europe/MEA at Qualcomm Europe. “EMEA is an epicenter for innovation and we are proud to support the digitization of industry, including utilities.”;

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