Since its deployment, the Smart Grid Pilot Program of Naval District Washington (NDW) has been working to monitor and evaluate energy usage among Navy installations throughout the region. At its core, this energy management concept provides responsible usage of resources while improving NDW’s cost effectiveness in a secure manner.
“In fiscal year 2012, the Office of the Chief of Naval Operations funded the NDW Smart Grid Pilot activity with the goal of establishing foundational capabilities to enable the energy mandates in a cyber-secure fashion,” said Rear Adm. Patrick Lorge, commandant of Naval District Washington. “They have accomplished the development of the Smart Grid industrial control architecture that has been tested, validated and certified by Fleet Cyber Command for Department of the Navy use; and we have only scratched the surface. While I’m excited about the progress that the NDW team has made in achieving the Pilot’s goals, what is more impressive is how this team has established the criteria for and built an operational Smart Grid.”
According to Jody Davenport, NDW Smart Grid Pilot program manager, the region’s Smart Energy concept of operations defines appropriate energy management actions based on information gained from the grid. In keeping with this concept, the Smart Grid Pilot identifies opportunities obtained from data analysis leading to the reduction of energy costs and consumption without impacting the mission. This in turn leads to an appreciable return on investment while providing improved mission readiness.
“The Navy has thousands of building systems for temperature and lighting control and hundreds of utility delivery systems to manage and monitor energy supply and demand,” said Davenport. “Today, each system functions in a passive and disconnected ‘on’ or ‘off’ world without fully accounting for internal and external factors such as maintenance issues, usage trends, emergencies, or changes in the cost of energy.”
To remedy this, the Navy is installing more than 20,000 new advanced meters at every installation to electronically monitor energy consumption and demand down to the building level.
“The NDW/NAVFAC Washington Regional Energy Program continues to innovate and leverage resources to reduce energy consumption, while partnering with the Department of Energy on renewable energy alternatives,” said Lt. Cmdr. Keith Benson, regional energy program director. “The secure Smart Grid integrated with the Advanced Meter Initiative will provide the means to improve efficiencies, pinpoint data accountability across all six NDW installations and focus on smart business process reengineering.”
Davenport added that other technologies aid the Smart Grid Pilot as well. Smart buildings and Net Zero buildings, such as the Washington Navy Yard’s Visitor Center, take the integration of technology and utilities into the future. She said that these systems provide the links between the facets of the energy strategy being implemented in the Smart Grid. The interconnection of these technologies will provide decision makers with the capability to intelligently monitor, predict, respond to, and control facility building and utility management systems.
“Initial Smart Grid capability is to enable the existing controls in the building to be remotely managed through sensors and controls,” said Davenport. “Smart buildings allow us to provide active facility management, reduce work orders, minimize diagnostics, provide improved set point controls based on the building mission, and allow you to move from reactive to predictive maintenance. Utilizing the advanced metering deployment on energy consumption, industry smart buildings have provided benchmark information on optimal consumption by building type and the return on investment when a building is commissioned and employs continuous commissioning.”
Davenport explained that the NDW Smart Grid Pilot will network these advanced meters and the existing building and utility control systems onto a single, highly secure, modern architecture. The resulting Smart Grid will allow the Navy to respond to external drivers such as current energy pricing and emergency outages, as well as internal demand signals such as military operations and facility maintenance and modernization issues.
This type of control of energy usage, combined with improved resource management, results in a greater return on investment, said Davenport. The Smart Grid will leverage existing systems for cost efficiency and add security to older systems that are still functional but not currently accredited, resulting in scalable and interoperable capability packages, she said. According to her, the initial capabilities of the NDW Smart Grid include an expected 5 percent return on investment on advanced metering infrastructure deployment, $200,000 per accreditation package in reciprocity for Enterprise Industrial Controls Systems, and 15 to 30 percent return on investment upon commissioning of buildings.
This story is part two of a four-part series on the NDW Smart Grid Pilot Program.