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Itron Inc., Microsoft expand collaboration to accelerate the energy transition

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Itron, Inc. which is innovating the way utilities and cities manage energy and water is expanding its long-term collaboration with Microsoft to accelerate cloud adoption and the next generation of consumer and grid edge solutions for the utility and smart cities industries. The collaboration uniquely brings together Itron's leading energy management solutions and Microsoft's leading cloud solutions to transform how end-users view and manage their energy, and how utilities meet the demands of a rapidly changing industry. Itron is working with Microsoft to develop solutions that deliver unprecedented insights and benefits for utilities, communities, and enterprises to reach their goals, including grid resilience, consumer engagement, operational efficiency, and decarbonization.

With a focus on security, reliability, and value, the collaboration will address industry critical challenges, such as greenhouse gas emissions, carbon tracking, zero-carbon goals, clean energy matching, data accessibility, and operational insights. This includes network visibility, asset management, outage management, and insights into Electric Vehicle (EV) and distributed energy resource loads that are essential to enabling a decarbonized grid. The collaboration will deliver integrated solutions to measure, report and accelerate the path to net-zero for utilities and their customers. Utilities will also be able to unlock additional value and data from their smart grid implementations, including new use cases such as location awareness, intelligent voltage monitoring, real-time transformer load monitoring, EV and solar awareness, active premise load shedding, and more.

The expansion of the collaboration will benefit industry stakeholders, consumers, and others by enabling high-fidelity data to be utilized at the edge of utilities' and cities' connected IoT platforms. Example use cases that will benefit from this data, analytics, and integration include:

  • Utilities tracking towards net zero goals and engaging their customers around carbon management
  • Distributed energy resource providers identify customers who can benefit from their products and customers who desire advanced energy solutions
  • Utilities improving demand-side management, outage communication, outage prevention, and outage management

By increasing the number of cloud-ready solutions for the next-generation technology stack, the collaboration will enable faster deployment, increase cost-effectiveness, and enhance security and resilience. With Microsoft, Itron is accelerating the extension of its leading Advanced Metering Infrastructure (AMI), data management, and analytics solutions to the cloud in global markets.

The expanded collaboration will allow Itron to identify utility and city customers across the globe who can benefit from their existing solutions and reach global enterprises with critical energy and decarbonization requirements. It will help more customers effectively shift operations into the cloud and take advantage of innovative and emerging solutions to meet critical operational, service, and sustainability goals.

"Expanding our collaboration with Microsoft is core to our commitment to delivering industry-leading solutions that make it easier for end-users to reduce their carbon footprint and conserve water. Our collaboration will provide analytics and data-sharing capabilities for utilities and cities, so they can optimize their operations and accelerate the transition to a low-carbon economy," said Don Reeves, senior vice president of Outcomes at Itron.

"As utilities begin to deploy edge compute-enabled connected IoT platforms, a new level of collaboration and co-innovation is needed for the utilities to harvest the unprecedented opportunity for growth and creating value. With Microsoft's advanced cloud technology combined with Itron's industry expertise, we are optimizing existing solutions and building new ones in an emerging and rapidly changing market."

"The collaboration between Itron and Microsoft will enable utilities and smart cities to take advantage of cloud computing technology—in particular, edge computing—to accelerate cloud-native analytics, distribution automation, carbon reporting and provide an overall more flexible, scalable system that supports a distributed, resilient energy grid," said Darryl Willis, CVP Worldwide Energy Industry, Microsoft. 

Author : Debi Dash
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