Paper: Smart Enery and Information Networks

Enable the Growth of a Smart Energy and Information Network in Rural India Today

An academic paper, published in Innovative Smart Grid Technologies Europe (ISGT EUROPE), 2013 4th IEEE/PES on "Enable the Growth of a Smart Energy and Information Network in Rural India Today" 

E. Mertens ·  Rural Spark · M.A. van Houten ·  P.G.S. Rutten, Enable the growth of a smart energy and information network in rural India today, DOI: 10.1109/ISGTEurope.2013.6695234 Conference: Innovative Smart Grid Technologies Europe (ISGT EUROPE), 2013 4th IEEE/PES, 2013.

This paper analyses the opportunity to leapfrog centralised energy networks and enable for the growth of smartly distributed energy networks. It focusses on the opportunity to do so in rural India, already today. The paper includes an analysis of the context, future energy solutions and a roadmap toward implementation. This paper provides backbone to Rural Spark as a technical vision on which the whole mission of Rural Spark is build.

Abstract: In developed countries, there are drivers and initiatives towards a smarter and more distributed energy network. However, especially in India there is an opportunity to leap-frog the in developed countries established top-down, centralized, energy infrastructure. The current lack of infrastructure in India makes over 400 million people use kerosene as primary lighting fuel. Kerosene lighting, together with cooking on inefficient firewood stoves results in many health, environment and economic issues. The lack of infrastructure, together with a large demand for change, in mainly rural areas, offers an opportunity to focus on an alternative approach for growing an energy network. An approach in which Indian village entrepreneurs generate, use and share sustainable energy allows the users to grow the future energy network from the bottom-up, starting today. Setting information as key element in this network adds (smart) possibilities for education, communication and fast feedback. This can allow for the growth of an organic, autonomous functioning network in which energy, information, service and control is distributed on all levels.

The full paper is available via this link or upon request.