Japan electricity grid, smart grid and smart meters

Japan electricity grid is historically dominated by Japan’s regional electricity operator architecture and is ripe for improvements

Japan electricity grid: historic growth and the 50Hz / 60Hz divide

Japan electricity grid architecture results from a very long time of regional monopoly electricity operators since 1952. Thus Japan electricity grid consists of 10 regional grids which are relatively weakly linked. Historically Japan’s electrification started in Tokyo using 50Hz equipment produced by the German company AEG, and in parallel in Osaka with 60Hz equipment produced by the US company General Electric. As a result Japan consists of two largely independent grids, the grid for Western Japan uses 60Hz, while the grid for Eastern Japan uses 50Hz. These two grids are linked via three comparatively low capacity frequency converter stations.

Japan electricity grid: smart meters and smart grid

The introduction of smart meters has now been decided, and the schedule for introduction has been accelerated.

In the case of Tokyo Electric Power Company, TEPCO, the initially planned closed procurement process has been replaced by a public open tender process, which was open to global suppliers. Previously planned closed TEPCO standards were replaced by open globally accepted standards to reduce costs.

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