Monday, October 21, 2013

Microgrid Security -- European Utility Week, Amsterdam

On May 1, 2013 I wrote an article for Jesse Berst's Smart Grid News entitled "Interested in Microgrids? Don't forget security." That article resulted in three invitations to speak on the subject.

The first invitation resulted in speaking on May 23rd about Microgrid Security at the "Smart Grid Cyber Security Virtual Summit 2013" sponsored by Smart Grid Observer.  This was an opportunity to provide a very high-level overview of microgrids and what security issues are of concern.

The third invitation I received was to speak at the 3rd Military and Commercial Microgrids conference scheduled for San Diego on November 20-22, 2013.  At this conference I will be on the panel "The Role of Microgrids in Military & Commercial Cyber Security."

However, last week I was in Amsterdam, The Netherlands as an invited speaker at the European Utility Week conference speaking on a microgrid panel.

The EUW was a very busy and well-attended event!  The size and "business" reminded me of RSA-level meetings at Moscone Center in San Francisco.  There were over 300 booths and 8,000+ attendees from around the world but predominantly Northern and Western Europe; however, I did meet some attendees from Hungary, Bulgaria, the Middle East, Asia and Africa.  There were even a few USA folk; however, I was informed by the organizer that several speakers from the US had to cancel due to the US government shutdown.

Anyway, my talk on Microgrid Security Considerations included the following agenda:

  • Introduction to Microgrids**
  • Types of Microgrids
  • Microgrid Installations
  • Enabling Technologies
  • Security Issues
  • A Case Example
  • Q&A
My fellow panelists included Dr. Monica Aguado from the Spanish National Renewable Energy Centre (CENER), Mike Gordon of Joule Assets (US), Steve Pullins - Chief Strategy Officer of Green Energy Corp (US), and Jöerg Müeller of Accenture (Germany) moderated by Dr. Simon Minett, Managing Director of Challoch Energy.

** I have written a white paper, Introduction to Microgrids, that is free upon request.  Please send me an email if you would like a copy.

Overall the meeting was interesting, busy, and definitely offered the "European View" of electric grid issues, highlights on the massive installation of renewables (especially Germany), ubiquitous discussions about Smart Meters, and even a few "less than positive comments" about the US' inability to run its government :-(

I hope to go again in the future...In the mean time, please join me in San Diego at the Microgrids Conference in November.