IBM is working in partnership with EcoIsland on a Smart Grid initiative to integrate the Isle of Wight's future solar, tidal, geothermal and wind power. The initiative will give the island the ability to monitor its electricity network to make best use of renewable generation while managing demand on the Island from the UK mainland grid. The project is one of the key ingredients in the Isle of Wight’s aim to become the first truly sustainable region of the UK.
IBM will work alongside other partners to design and build a first-of-its-kind smart grid blueprint. IBM will create an IT infrastructure that gathers data on the island's energy usage from generation meters before storing it in IBM's secure UK Smart Energy Cloud. Once in the cloud the data will be analysed using IBM's smarter analytic techniques to understand how energy is being used. This will allow the Island to make smarter use of its energy by using advanced technology to harness renewables with the aim of securing energy self-sufficiency.
IBM technology will also enable equipment and devices to be controlled remotely to manage the pressure on the electricity grid at peak times when demand is highest. For example, this might include the scheduling of Electric Vehicle charging to off-peak times.
IBM technology is already being used on the Island in Chale to monitor domestic energy use and solar PV generation, as part of the Chale Community Project. The project enables island-trained home energy assessors to work with residents to reduce the amount of electricity they use in their homes, making best use of the free energy provided by their solar panels. This is leading directly to reductions in electricity bills.