Enel signs MoU with Russian power company for grid innovation

Italian utility Enel and Russia's Rosseti agree to joint-research on grid digitisation.
Published: Fri 09 Jun 2017

Enel and Rosseti, a major Russian electric power company, have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) which will see the two entities research and implement energy solutions to improve their smart grid network operations over the next two years.

Franceso Starace, CEO of Enel, said in a statement: “This Memorandum of Understanding allows us to share our expertise on one of the key areas of the group’s global strategy such as network digitisation, with particular emphasis on smart metering, network automation, and electric mobility.

Building the future energy system

Enel has recently developed its 2017-2019 grid modernisation roadmap which includes the adoption of advanced smart grid technologies and business models to optimise the operations of its subsidiaries in various countries.

A key part of the strategy is replacing existing smart meters with second-generation smart meters in Spain, while in Romania, Chile, Brazil and Colombia, the energy company is deploying pilot projects for second generation smart meters.

Through this new partnership, Rosseti says it aims to improve its knowledge of the construction and maintenance of smart grid infrastructure. This forms part of the utility's efforts to optimise the reliability and efficiency of grid network through real-time management of 2.3 million km of transmission and distribution lines and 496,000 substations.

Oleg Budargin, general director of Rosseti, said: “The implementation of smart meters will allow the architecture of future energy system to be built, as well as developing new services, reducing power losses and optimising costs.

“These are important factors from the point of view of the customers, who become an active part of the system and are interested in increasing the efficiency of their own energy consumption and the overall efficiency of the system as well.”

Russia 'not missed smart grid train'

As the world’s third largest energy consumer, Russia is expanding its use of the smart grid electrical framework to make its energy transmission more efficient and less wasteful. The country put together a strategy back in 2014 to modernize its energy infrastructure. 

Russia’s Federal Grid Company CEO Oleg Budargin said in a statement: “We haven’t missed the smart grid train yet,” and suggested that the grid’s upgrade could reduce electricity losses by 25% and save as much as 35bn kWh of power.

The modernisation plan includes smart meters and upgraded transmission infrastructure.