National Academy of Science and Engineering (acatech)
Germany's change in energy policy can only succeed using smart grids. Germany wants to opt out of nuclear energy by 2022 and rapidly transition to renewable energy sources such as wind and solar power. However, electricity production from these energy sources is sporadic by nature as wind and sun are not consistently available. The current energy grid is not designed for a large number of fluctuating energy sources, therefore these renewable energies can only be integrated into the electricity system on a large scale if the grid infrastructure and storage capacities are upgraded.
Information communication technology (ICT) is essential for the future power supply. Energy technology and ICT merge together in a “smart grid”, in which the individual infrastructure components communicate with each other and the power consumption and generation intelligently adapt to each other.