October 14, 2009 By News Report
Photo: Saifur Rahman, director of the Virginia Tech Advanced Research Institute is principal investigator for the Smart Grid Information Clearinghouse portal. (Virginia Tech)
Virginia Tech has been awarded a $1.25 million five-year contract by the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) to develop, manage, and maintain a public Smart Grid Information Clearinghouse (SGIC) web portal that encourages use of electricity in an environmentally responsible way. Project partners IEEE and the EnerNex Corporation will assist with content, which includes demonstration projects, use cases, standards, legislation, policy and regulation, lessons learned and best practices, and advanced topics dealing with research and development. The award, announced recently by U.S. Energy Secretary Steven Chu, is part of $47 million in funding under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act for eight projects to further smart grid demonstration projects in seven states.
Saifur Rahman, the Joseph R. Loring Professor of Engineering and director of the Virginia Tech Advanced Research Institute (ARI) in the National Capital Region, is principal investigator (PI) for the SGIC portal. "Virginia Tech is very pleased to be chosen as the only team in the United States to develop, manage, and maintain the Smart Grid Information Clearinghouse web portal. This will give us the opportunity to interact with governments, industries, regulatory agencies, and professional associations -- both in the United States and globally -- who are actively engaged in this new technology," Rahman said.
Manisa Pipattanasomporn, research assistant professor at ARI, will work closely with Rahman on the smart grid project.
The SGIC portal is designed to serve as a repository for public smart grid information and to direct its users to other pertinent sources or databases for additional data, case studies, etc. It will facilitate direct sharing and dissemination of smart grid information among various stakeholders on knowledge gained, lessons learned, and best practices. The portal will also serve as a decision support tool for both state and federal regulators in their deliberations for rule-making and evaluating the impact of their investments in the smart grid technologies and software.
"We envision the portal as the essential gateway that connects a smart grid community to the relevant sources of information that are currently scattered and distributed on the worldwide web," said Rahman.
ARI is located in the Ballston area of Arlington, Va. It provides a platform for Virginia Tech's engineering and computer science researchers to interact with counterparts in academia, government, and industry in the National Capital Region and also serves as a gateway to the research and development base at the main campus in Blacksburg. Learn more at http://www.ncr.vt.edu/Research/ari.html
This Digital Communities white paper highlights discussions with IT officials in four counties that have adopted shared services models. Our aim was to learn about the obstacles these governments have faced when it comes to shared services and what it takes to overcome those roadblocks. We also spoke with several members of the IT industry who have thought long and hard about these issues. The paper offers some best practices for shared government-to-government services, but also points out challenges that government and industry still must overcome before this model gains widespread adoption.