By dynamically optimizing voltage levels using sophisticated smart grid technologies, conservation voltage reduction (CVR) can continuously reduce energy consumption and demand during peak periods, when electricity prices are inflated and demand may exceed the available supply. Recent CVR pilot projects have delivered excellent results, and the technology is likely to become one of the most popular energy efficiency and demand response measures among North American utilities before the end of 2020. According to a new report from Navigant Research, revenue from CVR components in North America will grow from $8.4 million in 2013 to $776 million by 2022.
“A high-precision voltage reduction strategy that can unleash unprecedented smart grid benefits, CVR is likely to be next on the smart grid deployment schedule,” says Kristoffer Torvik, senior research analyst with Navigant Research. “North American utilities have yet to take full advantage of the benefits of CVR, which often lies latent in the smart meter functionality.”
The key elements of a CVR system include primary components (automation equipment installed at the substation), secondary components (field equipment installed beyond the substation and at the edge of the grid), telecommunications nodes, such as modems, radios, routers, and repeaters, and CVR software. Several other enabling or enhancing components help form the overall CVR cost and benefit structure, according to the report, including smart meters, backbone communications, grid analytics, and load scheduling analysis.