Workshop on Smart Grid Interoperability Testing and Certification
Cuong T. Nguyen, Avi M. Gopstein
New smart grid architectures, devices, systems, and applications require extensive data exchange, necessitating well-defined interfaces to transfer and translate this data across the grid. Clarifying the protocols and data performance requirements across channels of communication is critical to easing the integration and interoperability of smart grid technologies. Testing and certification (T&C) programs provide a mechanism for all stakeholders to gain confidence that equipment will operate as intended and conforms to standards. The added confidence afforded by T&C strengthens the standards ecosystem and fosters technology innovation and adoption. Companies can also advertise that products or services conform with a recognized technical standard or specification. While T&C programs do exist for smart grid standards, they are currently limited in number and in general are focused on a subset of metrics that cannot in isolation guarantee interoperability. This report presents the results of a workshop co-hosted by NIST with the Smart Electric Power Alliance and the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) Standards Association in Washington, DC. The purpose was to explore underlying drivers for the current state of T&C programs for smart grid interoperability. The workshop also examined interoperability profiles for smart grid standards as a means to accelerate the development of T&C programs. Workshop attendees included nearly 50 experts from the smart grid stakeholder community, including representatives from industry, academia, government, professional associations, and testing and certification bodies.