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Issue 05/2017

Sustainable RE needs global cooperation, standardization and innovation

In recent years, several important international agreements have been concluded, to accelerate renewable energy access and advance energy efficiency.

Among these, in 2015, the United Nations General Assembly adopted a dedicated Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) on Sustainable Energy for All (SDG 7), while the year ended in the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change’s (UNFCCC) 21st Conference of the Parties (COP21) in Paris, where 195 countries agreed to limit global warming to well below two degrees Celsius

Issue 03/2017

Lighting the road ahead

New technologies set fresh challenges for IEC TC 34

The lighting sector is experiencing a deep transformation across the world as new energy-efficient lighting technologies that first appeared a few years ago gain wide adoption. They are being adopted throughout the world as countries seek to control their energy consumption. IEC Technical Committee (TC) 34: Lamps and related equipment, and its Subcommittees (SCs), develop International Standards for electric light sources including energy-efficient lighting solutions.

Issue 03/2017

Ready for the Smart Grid?

The IEC is updating Standards which have wide repercussions on Smart Grids

As the use of Smart Grids escalates around the world, the IEC is busy updating some of its most requested International Standards. Technical Committee (TC) 57: Power systems management and associated information exchange, is working on the IEC 61850 series of Standards.

 

Issue 03/2017

Energy Efficiency starts at home

Manufacturers address energy usage in home appliances

Today, numerous machines and devices powered by electricity can be found in our homes. Take, for example, the kitchen. This room alone probably has a dishwasher, an oven and a fridge, not to mention an array of smaller appliances for preparing and cooking food.

Issue 02/2017

IEC calls on disruptive technology for universal energy access

Announcing the LVDC Conference on Sustainable Electricity Access, 22-23 May 2017, in Nairobi

Energy, and especially electricity, is the golden thread that impacts the majority of the 17 United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), and furthermore, the development of every nation and economy.  The UN recognizes electricity access as a key pillar for economic development because it helps to reduce poverty and hunger, improves educational opportunities and enables higher quality healthcare.

Issue 02/2017

IEC work on cyber security for energy infrastructure

International conference presents IEC activities in cyber security

Protecting energy security and critical energy infrastructure against cyber attacks is fast emerging as an absolute priority. In mid-February, the EnergyPact Foundation organized an international conference in Vienna on cyber security aimed at protecting such infrastructure. Eyal Adar, an expert on cyber security, outlined the extent of IEC standardization and Conformity Assessment (CA) activities in the domain, giving details of the areas to which they apply. 

Issue 01/2017

Aiming for 100% interoperability

Standards are part of the solution to make smart everything fully connected

The past year may not have seen significant breakthroughs in the tech world but 2017 is promising some interesting technological developments.

Issue 01/2017

Energy efficiency trickles down into large applications

Essential in energy-hungry domains such as industry and buildings

Achieving better Electrical Energy Efficiency (EEE) is a very broad task that extends well beyond the more efficient transformation of primary energy, chiefly fossil fuels, into electrical energy. It must be introduced in energy-intensive sectors like industry and buildings. Standardization work by numerous IEC Technical Committees (TCs) is central to this broader objective. 

2016
Issue 08/2016

Standardization can help millions access electricity

IEC approves Systems Committee for LVDC

It has been a busy year for Systems Evaluation Group (SEG) 4: Low Voltage Direct Current (LVDC) Applications, Distribution and Safety for use in Developed and Developing Economies. During the IEC 2016 General Meeting (GM) in Frankfurt, SEG 4 Convenor, Vimal Mahendru, presented a final report to the Standardization Management Board (SMB). The SMB voted in favour of the proposal to set up a Systems Committee (SyC) for LVDC and LVDC for electricity access.

Issue 08/2016

Smart Energy

A global path towards Energy Efficiency and sustainable development

Nava provides insights into a Mexican programme that aims to increase energy efficiency with consumers and the need to encourage the take-up of renewable energy sources.

Issue 08/2016

Smart cities to boost energy efficiency

A wide range of technologies will help cities optimize energy use

In hundreds of smart city projects around the world, governments, municipalities and private stakeholders are investing in smart grids, open data platforms and networked transport systems to meet the challenges of environmental sustainability, population growth and urbanization. 

Issue 08/2016

What makes energy smart?

Energy-efficient technological advances will benefit everyone

Energy in itself is not smart. What makes it smart then? The numerous technological advances that allow companies and household to use energy more efficiently.

Issue 08/2016

Tackling energy efficiency from the start

Better energy efficiency is central to our future energy supply and to sustain growth

Energy efficiency represents the biggest source of untapped energy in the world and, by helping slowing down final energy consumption, one of the main contributors in the reduction of noxious gases emissions. Improved electrical energy efficiency is made possible by standardization work performed by many IEC Technical Committees (TCs) and starts with electricity generation, distribution and storage.

Issue 06/2016

Ensuring renewable energy systems are safe

IEC promotes the development of renewable sources for electricity production through standardization and certification

Renewable Energy (RE) plays an increasingly important role in providing global populations with clean, affordable, sustainable energy. RE production and use continues to increase thanks to the falling cost of equipment and installation.

Issue 06/2016

Electricity access is key

Message from Frans Vreeswijk, IEC General Secretary & CEO

IEC work impacts all aspects of life. Electricity and electronics are the cornerstone for all economies in developing and developed countries. IEC International Standards together with IEC Conformity Assessment Systems support 12 out of the 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

Issue 05/2016

Standards support Smart Grid architecture

IEC International Standards will play critical role in Smart Grid power supply and distribution infrastructures

Information is gathered and decision making occurs at substation level in Smart Grids. The electricity-dispatching control centre deals with the strategic management of grid intelligence, while automated management handles transmission and distribution. An intelligent substation reports electricity consumption, switchboard operation, information gathering, and station decision making back to the electricity dispatching control centre. Generally, substations are unattended and rely on supervisory control and data acquisition (SCADA) for remote supervision and control.

Issue 05/2016

The rise of renewable energies

The falling cost of equipment and installation together with increased investment are driving the growth of renewable energies

During the United Nations Climate Convention – 2015 Paris COP 21, it was recognized that renewable energy (RE) is a key part of the answer to achieving sustainable development and reducing the impact of climate change. Global electricity networks must adapt and include RE technologies.

Issue 04/2016

The off-grid solar revolution

Off-grid solar powered products are booming and giving millions of people access to electricity

We don’t think twice about using lights at home during the day or after dark. We have also got used to charging our smart phones wherever we are – at the airport, on a train or in the office – so that we can make online purchases, read the news, send messages, do banking or make a call. When we forget our phones or there is a blackout for an hour and we can’t watch television, use the computer or boil the kettle, we find it very annoying, but imagine if this were the norm.

Issue 04/2016

The growing importance of global-scale renewable energy

IEC provides a framework to test and certify renewable energy technology

Over the last five years, the cost of renewable power generation technologies has dropped while the technology has improved. Biomass for power, hydropower, geothermal and onshore wind can all now provide electricity competitively compared to fossil fuel-fired power generation, according to the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA).

Issue 04/2016

Electricity access for everyone, everywhere

Facilitating rural electrification in developing and newly industrialized countries

World energy consumption is expected to grow by 37% by 2040, according to the International Energy Agency (IEA) energy markets forecast, which assumes the continuation of existing policies and measures and their implementation.

Issue 04/2016

Cooling data centre energy demand

Cutting energy needs for operating and cooling data centres emerges as a priority for the future

Continuing global growth in the on-line sector and so-called cloud services means a comparable and significant increase in the power use associated with those services. Major internet-based businesses such as Google, Amazon, Facebook and Microsoft are pushing for more dedicated renewable energy to meet their specific needs, but systems efficiency can also make a major contribution to curbing energy use. Emerging standards have a key role to play.

Issue 03/2016

The “Internet” of Energy

Building one global grid with electricity superhighways

On 30 and 31 March 2016, the first International Conference on Global Energy Interconnection (GEI) took place in Beijing, China. The event was initiated by State Grid Corporation of China (SGCC), the International Energy Agency (IEA), the Edison Institute and Caring for Climate (C4C), and co-organized among others with the IEC. Dr Shu, IEC Vice President and President of SGCC, and Frans Vreeswijk, IEC General Secretary & CEO, both presented how such a vision can be brought to reality, to an audience of more than 500 people.

Issue 02/2016

Reverse mode fuel cells for energy storage

Using fuel cell modules in reverse mode will improve energy storage for renewables

A sense of collective responsibility is required to cope with the growing dependence on energy, given the fundamentally unpredictable nature of primary energy supply, the intermittent nature of renewable energy sources and changing energy consumption demands and patterns. The growing need for decentralized (local or remote, residential or commercial) power generation calls for systems that maximize small-scale electrical efficiency. Fuel cells (FCs) are ideal candidates for fulfilling this demand. In fact, at 60% proven net electrical efficiency for generators with a power output as low as 1 kWe, FC systems are head and shoulders above any other fuel conversion technology. If they are to succeed in being deployed widely, FCs for stationary applications should be able to use any locally available fuel. When and if production volumes manage to cover the extensive need for small-to-medium scale generation – which will also depend on the realization of anticipated reductions in cost – there is no reason why FCs should not also be used on the largest scales of power production.

Issue 01/2016

Power to the people

Be energy efficient, make a difference

On the one hand, energy efficiency is a new way of life that requires behavioural changes on the consumer’s part. On the other, the pressure is on the manufacturers of electrical equipment and devices to produce goods that consume as little energy as possible.

2015
Issue 09/2015

Supporting UN Sustainable Development Goals

IEC now officially at home in Africa

Energy is the life-blood of developed and developing economies. IEC work helps enable broad access to sustainable energy and directly supports UN Sustainable Development Goals. It does so by providing universally accessible technical know-how and expertise in the form of International Standards. With them countries are able to build safer, more affordable infrastructure that is easier to maintain.  To be even closer to Africa, the IEC has now opened a Regional Centre for Africa in Nairobi, Kenya.