The growth in distribution automation projects is nothing short of astonishing. The reason? Optimizing distribution promises utilities a significant positive return on their smart grid investments, with real gains already being realized across a wide range of implementations.
Pike Research forecasts that distribution automation spending will total $46 billion worldwide by 2015 and that the returns from the sale of sensors alone will reach $6.3 billion by 2014. Clearly the opportunities are enormous. However, the big unknown right now is which projects will ultimately be the most successful, and reap the greatest ROI for both utilities and technology providers.