By Jeff Fortin
This past week I was at DistribuTECH 2012 and was able to see firsthand how companies supplying to the energy market are responding to Smart Grid requirements and adapting to the market needs that the Smart Grid is creating. There was a diverse array of companies in attendance demonstrating their interpretation of the future of energy — from ABB, a veteran to the energy market, to Ceiva, who has developed an innovative approach to home energy management using their familiar electronic picture frame technology.
Wind River demonstrated a model of a wind turbine system that was controlled by the Bachmann M1 Controller System. The M1 Controller System includes modules for Digital and Analog I/O, Network Connectivity, Fieldbuses, Safety, and a Processor Module. The Bachmann M1 Processor Module provides a robust, scalable and flexible solution for applications ranging from classical PLCs to enabling connectivity to the IT cloud, and leverages a range of Intel processors and runs Wind River’s VxWorks RTOS. By combining the processing suite offered by Intel and Wind River, the M1 can be used in applications requiring any combination of PLCs, motion controllers, connectivity and data management. The M1 is not limited to wind turbine applications — it could be used in range of energy applications that require a safe, secure and reliable intelligent device.
I’m excited to see how Wind River is helping companies like Bachmann provide solutions to the growing number of Intelligent Energy applications. We see devices expanding beyond the traditional embedded device to intelligent devices such as meters, thermostats, display panels, and HVAC controls. The challenge to our customers will be how to cost effectively develop solutions that meet safety, security and reliability requirements while still meeting time to market goals and containing operational expenses associated with these new devices.
What are you seeing in the Intelligent Energy arena? Please share your thoughts with us. Also, we’ll be demonstrating the Bachmann wind turbine at the upcoming Embedded World conference in Nuremberg – we hope to see you there!
For additional information from Wind River, visit http://www.facebook.com/WindRiverSystems.