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Subject: Re: [obix] I need some feedback - oBIX next steps and the smart grid


If the basic problem is how to represent and query real-time and historical data - is not oBIX as is sufficient?

In what regards is scheduling a requirement for Smart-Grid?  Is there some specific use cases?  Aaron has posted a draft for how it will work in oBIX based on iCAL.  It is really just a question of getting implementations and going through the standards process.


On Sun, Jul 26, 2009 at 10:16 AM, Considine, Toby (Campus Services IT) <Toby.Considine@unc.edu> wrote:

As many of you know, I have been working on the roadmap for smart grid standards this year, a task that has consumed my time and made me a poor convener of meetings.


The smart grid is one huge mass of legacy systems and legacy protocols. The most interesting part of the smart grid, too me, is its interactions with the end nodes, i.e., industrial sites, commercial buildings, and homes. The grid, by its very nature, must be conservative and slow to adopt new technologies. The end nodes can be more agile, and can support more diverse technologies. A key aspect of the smart grid is creating informational (and economic) interfaces that enable the end nodes to solve the grids most critical problems of dealing with increasing unreliability (we are by policy introducing unreliable energy sources) and balancing supply and demand.


On the building side, architectural sketches are looking to two interfaces, the meter and the energy services interface (ESI). The ESI is the locus for a variety of services, including Demand Response, that I will not go into here. The Meter is a special interface, a secure SCADA end-point for the grid, the secure cash register for energy purchases, and an information source (read only) to the end node.


One of the high priority (and highly visible) (and politically sensitive) items in the US smart grid road map is access to live metering data. This problem presents in several forms. How do I get interval data from the Customer Information System (CIS) of the utility? How should we standardize read-only access to the newly designed smart meter? How do we standardize data read off legacy meters to a format that can be consumed by a variety of software tools inside the premises? How do we present interval data (by relay or proxy) up to a 3rd party energy manager or presentation tool such as Google Energy?


To me, this a natural use for the historian functions (section 14) of oBIX. This is precisely the type of scenario for which oBIX was developed: a common abstraction of functions common to all control protocols, readily understandable without domain knowledge, and abstract enough for enterprise interaction.


I have long wanted oBIX 1.1 to use WS-Calendar functions for scheduling, rather than developing its own. This has made me dilatory on scheduling meetings, as WS-Calendar is in a perpetual “real soon now”™ state. I have recently shared the links to the IETF drafts on schedules with this committee.


Source: http://tools.ietf.org/html/draft-daboo-et-al-icalendar-in-xml-00

Source: http://tools.ietf.org/html/draft-daboo-calendar-availability-01

Source: http://www.newdaedalus.com/articles/2009/6/6/schedules-for-things-and-markets.html


The question is, should we finish 1.1 without waiting for Calendar, eliminating the known ambiguities, and standardizing the RSS/ATOM subscription functions? Please respond to the list or to me. I will be on the road most of this week, and the first half of next week. The next week begins with a conference that some of you will be at on developing plans to resolve the priority actions (including meter information sharing) for the next two years of the roadmap.


If someone wants to talk, 919-619-2014

If someone wants an evening meeting (east coast) next week I can make it..





"It is the theory that decides what can be observed."   - Albert Einstein

Toby Considine

Chair, OASIS oBIX Technical Committee
Co-Chair, OASIS Technical Advisory Board
Facilities Technology Office
University of North Carolina
Chapel Hill, NC


Email: Toby.Considine@ unc.edu
Phone: (919)962-9073


blog: www.NewDaedalus.com



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