Smart Energy Technologies

Technical Symposium

Scaling DER Management Communications: California Interoperability Certifications

Tuesday, September 25
1:55 PM - 2:15 PM
Location: 203AB

Abstract Content : Aim/Objective: Educate attendees on the complex set of test and certification requirements defined by the CA PUC aimed at scaling the communications infrastructure for DER management in the state. CA has defined technical requirements in order to create an interoperable eco-system of DER resources, DER aggregators, DER Energy Management Systems and Utilities all in communications with each other at reasonable costs.
Methods: Slide presentation to review the relationships and requirements of UL 1741SA, IEEE 1547-2018, IEEE 2030.5-2018 and the SunSpec IEEE 2030.5 Test and Certification Program.
Results: Industry test and certification programs enable a more efficient implementation of DER management systems that interoperate with a minimum of integration effort. Given the variety of interests and opinions about what testing and certifications advance the efficiency and interoperability of deploying DER communications infrastructure, the landscape of standards and certifications can be confusing. This presentation identifies the current and future required and optional certifications relevant to implementing CA Rule 21 for Smart Inverter communications in California, one of the global leaders in standardizing both smart inverter functionality and communications.
The key certifications are:
• UL 1741SA Certification, mandated in Rule 21 as of September 2017, to be supplanted by IEEE 1547-2018 Functional Certification when certification is available.
• IEEE 1547-2003, effective since 2003 and updated in 2014. Mandated by CA IOUs (in Rule 21).
• SunSpec CSIP Conformance Test for IEEE 2030.5 DER Certification (mandated in CA Rule 21) 9 months after publication in June, 2018.
• IEEE1547-2018 Interoperability Certification, effective once IEEE 1547.1 is completed and published, estimated 2019. Expected to be mandated by CA IOUs.
The result of this presentation will be a clearer understanding of the multiple programs aimed at standardization and interoperability of the CA DER infrastructure.
Conclusion: The reason CA Rule 21 is standardizing the inverter communications is to gain the benefits of deployment speed, lower costs and a larger vendor community that come with standardization. The alternative is either being locked into a vendor’s proprietary solution or spending significant resources and time to custom integrate different vendor’s products.

The confluence of CA Rule 21 and IEEE 1547-2018 interoperability requirements creates a unique opportunity and set of regulatory (grid code) drivers that will benefit those purchasing and using smart inverter communications infrastructures and those vendors that aggressively adopt the emerging standards for communications. This is a model that can well inform the rest of the US and World.


James Mater, MBA

General Manager, Smart Grid
QualityLogic, Inc

James Mater is one of the leading experts on smart grid interoperability and the maturity of products based on communications standards such as OpenADR, IEEE 2030.5 and IEC 61850. He leads his company’s smart grid business and has given dozens of talks and papers on interoperability in the smart grid including a DistribuTech UU courses on Interoperability and DER Communications Protocols. He gave a 2017 SPI Technical Presentation on DER Communications Standards. He was an original member of the SGIP Test and Certification Committee (TCC), is a member of the GridWise Architecture Council, is the Chair of the OpenADR Marketing Work Group, member of the IEEE 1547.1 Interoperability Work Group, contributes to the development and operation of numerous industry Interoperability Test and Certification Authorities (ITCA) and is Past Chair of Smart Grid Northwest. He does training and lectures on OpenADR and IEEE 2030.5 and organized two Symposiums on IEEE 2030.5 and a workshop on DER Communications Standards co-sponsored by EPRI and OpenADR. James is a graduate of Reed College and the Wharton School of Business


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Scaling DER Management Communications: California Interoperability Certifications

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