The rise of the smart grid over the past decade, and the rapid expansion of the information generated through smart grid technologies over the past few years, has been both a windfall and a headache to utility management. Being told the smart grid will make the utility more efficient and more cost-effective and then actually realizing those goals have seemed to be two opposing forces – until recently, with the introduction of two new analytics-based applications designed to help utilities capitalize on their smart grid investments. Massive amounts of data are generated every day from dozens of deeply integrated software technologies, including Meter Data Management, Outage Management, GIS, AVL, prepaid metering, CIS and even weather forecasting. Making sense of all this data, and knowing how the data blends together to generate meaningful information, no longer poses a significant challenge to reaping the full rewards of the smart grid.

Two new analytics-based applications are rapidly changing the way smart grid data is used at utilities. By focusing on the importance of data blending and the power of data visualization, ReportIQ and CatalystIQ are literally changing the way utilities look at their data.

The ReportIQ platform goes beyond the standard reporting library common with legacy dashboard applications by offering each user the flexibility to create custom analytics and gather the data exactly the way they want to see it, providing virtually unlimited options. By blending data from any number of previously unconnected data sources, ReportIQ leverages technology that can help managers see patterns, identify trends and discover visual insights in seconds.

CatalystIQ approaches data blending from the GIS side of the smart grid first, and then connects that data with the utility’s other data sources – meter data, consumer data, work order and job data, vehicles, physical assets, etc. – and displays all of the information on the map, literally showing all of the data at its origination point within the utility’s service area. Imagine being able to overlay outages with lightning strikes to show better outage detection points and locations for lightning arrestors, or being able to prevent transformer overload by determining any transformer’s actual load before adding new services to that line.

True data blending and data visualization make smart grid efficiencies a reality, and both ReportIQ and CatalystIQ make true data blending and visualization a reality. For more information about ReportIQ from SEDC, contact sales@sedata.com. For more information about CatalystIQ from Futura Systems, contact sales@futuragis.com.

Futura Systems, Inc., is a wholly-owned subsidiary of SEDC and is based in Atlanta, Georgia.