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About the REAL Lab

Our research focuses on how to build a smart grid that will maximize the amount of energy produced from renewable energy sources at a reasonable cost while maintaining the reliability of the electricity supply at the level to which we have grown accustomed.

From Sweden to South Africa and from China to California, governments are encouraging the development of renewable sources of electrical energy. Many of these governments are taking measures to reduce the use of fossil fuels for transportation and heating and are thus likely to increase the proportion of energy that is consumed in electrical form. Accommodating these changes in the generation and consumption of electricity will require a fundamental rethinking in the design and operation of the power grid. A consensus is emerging that many of these challenges could and should be met primarily through the development of a "smart grid" rather than simply building more generating plants and more transmission lines.