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October 13, 2009

Microsoft launches new software architecture for utility companies

Claims to help identify and solve integration issues of grid and energy ecosystem advancement

By CBR Staff Writer

Microsoft has developed a reference architecture based on its platforms, which it says can serve as the basis for development of an ‘integrated utility of the future’.

Microsoft said that its Smart Energy Reference Architecture (SERA) addresses technology integration throughout the full scope of the smart energy ecosystem. It helps utilities by providing a method of testing the alignment of information technology with their business processes to create an integrated utility.

This is the second utility offering to be released from Microsoft in four months, following the announcement of Microsoft Hohm, an online application developed to provide insights into the supply and demand of residential energy use.

According to Microsoft, the new architecture provides a road map for utilities to help identify and solve the integration issues facing grid and energy ecosystem advancement. It also empowers users to drive improvements in real time, as well as to accelerate continuous improvement over time.

Microsoft said that its SERA has already been endorsed by a number of global providers whose energy industry products span from power grid to the home, and customers such as Fujairah F2 O&M Company are seeing the benefits of solutions built according to an architecture that provides the alignment of IT with their business processes.

Larry Cochrane, worldwide utilities industry technology strategist/architect at Microsoft, said: “Utility industry executives who are concerned about changing their business models to ones that enable a smarter energy ecosystem will view Microsoft as a partner of choice because of its current strengths within their technology regimes as well as our solutions’ adaptability to future, sometimes unknown, conditions and business environment needs.

“The Microsoft Smart Energy Reference Architecture represents our continuing commitment to our utility industry customers and our holistic vision of how the smart grid fits into the much larger energy ecosystem that’s evolving daily.”

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