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The Electric Power Research Institute (EPRI) has been selected by the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST), an agency of the Department of Commerce, to facilitate the development of a smart-grid interoperability road map for the electricity sector. The ultimate aim of the program will be to provide a framework to aid in the modernization of the nation's transmission and distribution system.

EPRI's development of this interim road map will be a major step toward harmonizing interoperability standards for the smart grid, according to the company. It is intended to ensure that different vendors' products will work together effectively and that consensus standards should drive down the cost of components and systems, reduce the risk of early obsolescence and spur innovation.

"EPRI is in a unique position to launch this effort quickly and efficiently, because our research and development programs have been focusing on a number of key aspects of the smart grid," says Arshad Mansoor, vice president of NIST's power delivery and utilization sector.

Scheduled to be completed by early summer, the interim road map will inventory existing standards, identify gaps and list priorities for reconciling differences among current standards.

Under terms of the $1.3 million contract, EPRI will develop the interim road map that has consensus support of the utility industry, independent system operators, manufacturers, standards development organizations, state regulators and consumer representatives.

SOURCE: The Electric Power Research Institute Inc.


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