The technical revolution, renewable energies, and adherence to climate objectives place particular challenges on converting energy distribution networks.

This is how the constantly increasing feed-in from renewable energy generation plants as well as joining sectors leads to more network volatility. Furthermore, the required energy storage and the charging infrastructure for electric vehicles must be integrated. To ensure network stability, improved system coordination is required, as well as corresponding services from the distribution network.

In this context, SAG, part of the SPIE Group since the end of March 2017, and a service and system supplier for power grids and systems relating to the generation, provision, and use of energy and media, together with Mauell, have developed the scalable Smart Grid platform iNES. The intelligent distribution grid network management system solution for distributed grid control and automation combines network components such as variable local grid transformers, voltage regulators, and reactive and active power while taking into account the grid storage into one overall system. iNES continuously monitors the current network state, troubleshoots critical situations using targeted control interventions, and thereby ensures optimum utilization of the equipment. In this way, costly investments in network development can be put back or significantly reduced. Furthermore, it also opens up new business models for network operators.

After Phoenix Contact became involved in a part of Mauell, specifically Mauell Netzleittechnik, in November 2016, the newly founded company has been fully acquired as of 1 April 2017. The subsidiary, which operates under the name Phoenix Contact Energy Automation is continuing to work closely together with SAG as regards the iNES system solution. Thanks to this collaboration, both companies are expecting increased innovation while simultaneously reducing the development efforts required in the field of distributed energy systems. In doing so, they are relying on the interoperability of iNES when it comes to existing devices, as well as those to be integrated in the future. Here, Phoenix Contact offers a comprehensive portfolio of components and systems such as controllers and network technology, I/O systems, as well as remote control and visualisation solutions, that are already being used in many applications in energy generation and distribution.