Activities in FY2012

Papers were releaed in IEEJ Transactions on Power and Energy Vol.3 No.2(2013)

IEEJ Transactions on Power and Energy Vol.133 No.2 (2012) Special Issue on Electric Network Innovation by Digital Grid

March, 2013 Keynote speech in EU Parliament

Prof. Abe made Keynote speech in EU Climate Parliament in March 6, 2013. He introduced Digital Grid concept to attendees who were Taiwan, Bangladesh, Korea, Asian, Senegal, Morocco, Tanzania and European countries representatives.
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The Digital Grid Concept

Profesor Rikiya Abe (The University of Tokyo) has been interviews about the Digital Grid concept.

October 2, 2012 Lecture Meeting : KEIZAI DOYUKAI

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November 12, 2012 Call for Recruit New 2nd Program Partnership Members

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Press Release / FCCJ September 13,2012

12:30-14:30 September 13, 2012
Documents can be downloaded below. Download this file

The Digital Grid: A Message from Professor Abe

Professor Rikiya Abe (University of Tokyo) speaks about basic ideas about the Digital Grid.

Program No.1 was planned

Power interchanging system among several grids and prototypes for Digital Grid will be developed during FY2012.

1. the scope of joint development
Specifications of the first prototypes for Digital Grid are to be drawn up. Demonstrations should be given to prove that the router works well.

2. expected outcome of this program

Hardware design, 、RT control system design, Documented Experiences, Local Control Software(reference code)、application examples(reference code)、Test DesignSpecifications of the first Digital Grid Router are not open to the public.
I/F Protocol
Router Control Protocol、Wave Control Protocol、Electric I/F

3. Reseponsibility Assignment

Partner's assignment
RT control system, Local control system, global control system, communication infrastructure, prototyping, design for power interchangeing, System Architecture, Business Model, identification of end-user demands
Out assignment
provide intellectual properties of the Digital Grid Consortium, provide a developer-kit for test, provide a place for development, provide a trend information about relevant markets, educations for development
Group work
Development of prototypes for Digital Grid Router, Demonstration, Public relations
development schedule

The Digital Grid™ Consortium Announces the Start of Technical Development and Standardization Efforts
  • Press Release
  • December 12, 2011
  • Digital Grid Consortium
  • ORIX Corporation
  • NEC Corporation
  • National Instruments Japan

The Digital Grid™ Consortium Announces the Start of Technical Development and Standardization Efforts - The Internet of Energy -
The Digital Grid Consortium, a not-for-profit Japan corporation announces today the establishment of a research center in Bunkyo, Tokyo. Rikiya Abe is the CEO of the corporation, named the dGrid Consortium, established 9/7/2011, and headquartered in Minato, Tokyo.
Joining in cooperation with the dGrid Consortium, ORIX Corporation, NEC Corporation and National Instruments Japan have agreed to work together to establish common interfaces and viable business models in preparation for joint development programs which will begin at the start of the 2012 fiscal year (see exhibit 1 below). In addition to the above named companies, power utilities, telecommunications carriers, heavy industry manufacturers, construction companies and others are in discussions to join the Consortium. Key industry leaders both in Japan and the US have joined the consortium as advisors, including leading electric utility research institution the Electric Power Research Institute (EPRI), headquartered in Palo Alto, California. Demonstration tests are also planned at the EPRI test facility in the USA.
The Digital Grid™ is a concept developed by Professor Rikiya Abe of the Socio-Strategic Engineering and Investment Laboratory at the University of Tokyo. The electric grid today is increasingly supporting renewable energy generation, which, through varying output, results in increasingly difficult grid management problems because the grid must be continuously balanced between generation and consumption. To resolve these issues, leveraging the storage of energy, and the addition of effective routing of power, the Digital Grid can effectively manage the grid even with very high concentrations of variable renewable energy. The dGrid Consortium was established to develop this technology and make it available throughout the world.
Today’s grid, including the next-generation “Smart Grid”, controls variation in power by varying the generation of power by large centralized generation facilities. With this system, when renewable energy is increased, a corresponding large investment in fossil-fuel generating equipment must be made so as to effectively control power on the grid. However, the Digital Grid enables the grid to be fractured into cells, from campus or building size on up to metropolitan or state-wide in size, which are connected to the main grid. The Digital Grid uses power routers to connect each cell to the backbone, using an asynchronous connection so that power variations can be strictly managed. Each cell manages its own energy internally, storing excess energy, and replenishing energy from external sources in a managed, forecastable method. Each cell can manage its own energy generation or storage investment as its own needs change.
Electric power can be transferred between cells using power routers, which specify addresses and routing using standard Internet protocols and related information technology. The Digital Grid enables the utilization of high concentrations of variable renewable energy, and is able to utilize the existing utility infrastructure and transmission lines.
In addition, the Digital Grid is suitable for developing countries, where power infrastructure is not yet fully in place, by enabling the connection of local standalone grids, giving them the reliability benefits of wide-area synchronized grids, but without the need for such synchronization and centralized control. The Digital Grid technology can be implemented locally, and diffuses as each local area seeks to capture the benefits that the technology offers.
The dGrid Consortium is promoting its development program, and calling for new members who can help to create the standards and products to bring the Digital Grid concept to fruition. The members of the Consortium can utilize the core intellectual property developed by the Consortium. Each member can build proprietary technology on this core intellectual property and develop products under license from the dGrid Consortium.
The dGrid Consortium is accepting new applications, and welcomes all new members. The Consortium will drive new standards and promote the concept for the mutual benefit of the members and society.
The exhibits below describe the initial development program and overview of the Consortium.

  • Digital Grid Consortium
  • Masashi Fukumura
  • TEL : 03-3582-9335

A paper was released in IEEE Smart Grid Transaction, Vol.2 No.2 June 2011 399

A papers were released in IEEE Smart Grid Transaction, Vol.2 No.2 June 2011 399. The title is "Digital Grid: Communicative Electrical Gridsof the Future", IEEE TRANSACTIONS ON SMART GRID, VOL. 2, NO. 2, JUNE 2011 399,IEEE TRANSACTIONS ON SMART GRID, VOL. 2, NO. 2, JUNE 2011 399
The paper can be downloaded below.Download this file

Digital Grid Highlights

Here is a short video of the digital grid team describing what is important about the digital grid.

Sakuma Frequency Conversion power plant

Japan has several "frequency converter" sites, one of which is the Sakuma plant which converts 300 MW of power between 50 Hz and 60 Hz segments of the grid. These power plants are "proof of concept" for the digital grid concept, since they show that very large scale controlled asynchronous connections between networks are possible. This video is a tour of the Sakuma plan.

Professor Rikiya Abe presentation at ISGT 2010

Dr. Abe presented our Digital Grid paper at the IEEE Power and Energy Society sponsored Innovative Smart Grids Europe 2010 conference on 10/12/2010. This is the presentation from that venue.