The Power Grid, or simply the Grid, is a fixed interconnected network for delivering electrical energy from suppliers to consumers, including the functions of power generation, transmission and distribution. It is a complex network operating on a large geographical scale (from local to intercontinental), voltage range (from 100V to 1 MV) and time frame (from microsecond to decades) to deliver a reliable and secure energy.
Due to environmental concerns, the recent trend towards environmentally friendly energy generation, and in general the need to improve the efficiency without decreasing the reliability of electricity distribution, lead to further increase the interconnections between geographical regions, and to a rapidly growing number of distributed generation plants.
To meet these challenges, innovative systems (such as intelligent monitoring and control) are being developed to create a Smart Grid, defined by the European Union as "an electricity network that can cost efficiently integrate the behavior and actions of all users connected to it—generators, consumers and those that do both—in order to ensure economically efficient, sustainable power system with low losses and high levels of quality and security of supply and safety.”
Maxwell Technologies Energy Solutions for the Grid - Brochure