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Japanese Firms to Construct Smart Grid Project in US

Nikkei. A consortium of Japanese firms, including Hitachi and Toshiba, is expected to construct a small smart grid project in the US that could be operational by the end of 2010.

Construction of the grid is to begin around October in an undetermined New Mexico city with about 1,000 families. The project will be led by the New Energy and Industrial Technology Development Organization, or NEDO, with the Japanese government to shoulder the initial costs of 2-3 billion yen [US$20-30 billion].

Although NEDO will solicit participants publicly, the firms that sign up are expected to be mainly those that took part in a Japan-US research project in April. This includes power-related companies Hitachi, Toshiba and Fuji Electric Holdings Co. unit Fuji Electric Systems Co., as well as such others as general contractor Shimizu Corp. and electronics giant Panasonic Corp.

The smart grid is expected to include a solar power generation system and battery-based energy storage system.



"Construction of the grid is to begin around October in an undetermined New Mexico city with about 1,000 families"..."the initial costs of 2-3 billion yen [US$20-30 billion]"...A 20-30 BILLION DOLLAR project for just 1000 families? Sounds profanely expensive to me.


Okay that's a typo...2 Billion Yen = about 20 MILLION US Dollars ...which makes more sense


Why is a group of Japanese companies doing a smart grid in the U.S.? When was the last time you heard of a group of American companies doing this in Japan? This sounds like a demo program aimed at getting a piece of the pie if the U.S. Government decides to go for a smart grid. Intel, Motorola, Cisco and any number of U.S. companies could be doing this, but I have not heard that they will.


A million Japanese Yen = 10,362 US Dollars
A billion Yen - $10.362 million US
2-3 billion Yen = $20-30M US
1 Yen = ~1 cent US
1 Yen = a little less that a penny
Now is that simple enough?


GCC, the Nikkei link doesn't work (needs login). Does it describe the smart grid? Will they actually recable the town to make good use of distributed energy production?


Smart Grid is an ill defined term. It can range from switching high power lines to turning off your AC from a central office during peak load times. Once we get a definition of what that term means we can have a constructive discussion.

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