16 Oct 2017

Infineon & Smart Wires to shape up existing grids for renewables

Infineon Technologies is partnering with Smart Wires on the design of the SmartValve. Since today’s grids are extremely challenged, utilities demand more economic, flexible solutions for the integration of renewable energies. New lines and other upgrades are, however, often costly and sometimes infeasible. At the same time, industry experts highlight that global power grids were built without valves to control the flow of power for higher efficiency.

The solution: SmartValve – As a third-generation product it is considerably lighter, less costly than other solutions and offers precise control of power flows on transmission lines of nearly all of the most common voltage and current levels. Increasing or decreasing the power flowing through a transmission line, it serves as a valve enabled by Infineon. The new SmartValve can be controlled through the utility’s energy management system or programmed to respond automatically to a wide variety of grid conditions. The SmartValve can be ordered now and is ready for delivery in early 2019.

“With this partnership, Infineon continues to expand its strategic relationships in Silicon Valley,” said Dr. Peter Wawer, President of the Industrial Power Control division at Infineon. “Together with Smart Wires, we can provide an innovative energy-efficient solution for the electric utility space. The cooperation is a perfect example of how Infineon is leveraging its system understanding. In this regard, we will not only bring power semiconductors to this cooperation but also RF components, microcontrollers, and security solutions.”

“From the earliest days of designing this product, the goal was to create a product for an easy and inexpensive installation on nearly every transmission line in the world,” said Gregg Rotenberg, CEO of Smart Wires. “We appreciate working with Infineon to realize this goal.”

“The challenges of building new infrastructure and the need for the transmission grid to support increasing levels of renewable energy are manifold,” said Haroon Inam, Chief Technology Officer of Smart Wires. “Therefore, many of the world’s most respected grid operators have embraced Smart Wires as a uniquely compelling solution offered at precisely the right time.”

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