GridWise Architecture Council

The GridWise® Architecture Council Affiliations

Q. Is the Architecture Council part of the Department of Energy, the GridWise® Alliance, or independent?

The GridWise® Architecture Council is an independent effort stemming from a number of related endeavors, including the DOE's GridWise Program (previously Advanced Communication and Control Program). The GWAC is not a formal DOE advisory board. In the context of its engagement in the GridWise vision, the DOE is providing limited financial and logistical support to the Architecture Council. The GWAC Bylaws describe the roles, responsibilities, policies and procedures that govern the operation of the GridWise Architecture Council (GWAC), including the role of the DOE OEDER Director as an ex-Officio GWAC member and the participation of the DOE in the member selection process.

The term GridWise is trademarked for use by DOE and other organizations affiliated with the concepts that it represents. The Department of Energy and the GridWise Alliance (an alliance of leading members of the power and information technology industries) have jointly declared their intention to work together to bring about GridWise transformation, with more impact and greater public good. GWAC member, Ron Ambrosio is currently the Liaison between the GridWise Architecture Council and the GridWise Alliance. The relationship between the GWAC and the GridWise Alliance is maturing with time.

The GridWise Alliance is a 501c6 not-for profit organization. Ultimately, the GWAC might have a home for incorporation with the GridWise Alliance; however, we also need to protect the GWAC's role as an independent, "open" body that is seen as beyond reproach from the influence of any particular set of businesses or funding source. The GWAC also must have the freedom to establish the relationships with other entities that it deems necessary to make it successful.

Q. Is the GWAC US-only or international?

GWAC operational scenarios need to reflect the North American situation initially; however, the DOE and other initiators of the Architecture Council recognize that international corporations, standards bodies, and other organizations will play a major role in providing the direction and where-with-all to enable such a transformation. Membership to the GWAC is not restricted to US citizens or companies. GridWise related activities are also emerging in Europe; as the GWAC progresses, collaborations may lead it to more directly collaborate on international concerns.

Q. Does the GWAC coordinate with other, related programs like EPRI's IntelliGrid Architecture?

The GWAC coordinates with a number of complementary efforts in related fields. Contacts have been made with the oBix standards work in the intelligent building community, NRECA's Multispeak initiative, and architecture efforts in the ISO/RTO area. An important area for coordination is with the EPRI sponsored IntelliGrid efforts. Don Von Dollen, the IntelliGrid Program Manager, is currently the liaison between the GWAC and the IntelliGrid Architecture.

Though their areas of interest overlap, IntelliGrid Architecture emphasizes the impact of information technology and communications to advance the electric utility business. EPRI engages their electric utility base in projects that define and demonstrate enterprise integration approaches based on open standards to create designs and identify best practices that address electric system operations. This work is also concerned with accommodating the rise of distributed energy resources and other external players in the electric system, but more so from the point of view of the electric utility.

The GridWise Architecture Council recognizes the intelligence emerging at the fringes of the traditional system and sees that unleashing new value propositions will drive a transformation in the electric power business and its operations. Developing a strategic view that is shared across a broad set of electricity related industries is an important thrust of the GWAC. As a result of the GridWise vision, the GWAC emphasizes the interfaces between independent parties in a collaborative association. This e-commerce flavor complements IntelliGrid's enterprise integration emphasis.

The GWAC and IntelliGrid Architecture efforts are working together to stay abreast of each others activities and share the results of their efforts. The GWAC offers a body of experts for overarching perspective of IntelliGrid and GridWise advances. This group will work to reduce competing efforts in overlapping areas, and identify gaps for consideration by either initiative. Finally, where conflicting opinions may exist, society benefits from multiple viewpoints that give depth and definition to the complex issues raised by such far reaching initiatives.

More FAQs

Questions on the GridWise® Vision and Technologies
Questions on Participating in the GridWise Architecture Council
Questions on the GWAC Call for Candidates Process

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