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Xcel Energy Selects GridPoint SmartGrid Platform for its SmartGridCity in Boulder, CO, A $100 Million Effort

Platform provides Advanced Demand and Supply Management, Solar Integration, PHEV Smart Charging, Backup Power and Online Ener

GridPoint Inc., a leading clean tech company whose smart grid platform benefits electric utilities, consumers and the environment, announced Xcel Energy selected the GridPoint SmartGrid Platform™ for its SmartGridCity™ in Boulder, Colo. The platform applies information technology to the electric grid to provide utilities with an intelligent network of distributed energy resources that controls load, stores energy and produces power.

Xcel Energy’s advanced, smart grid system – estimated to be a $100 million effort when fully implemented over the next few years – will provide customers with a portfolio of smart grid technologies designed to provide environmental, financial and operational benefits. Xcel Energy’s Smart Grid Consortium, bringing together leading technologists, engineering firms, business leaders and IT experts, will provide guidance, products and services needed to bring Xcel Energy's smart grid vision to life. Consortium members include Accenture, Current Group, GridPoint, Schweitzer Engineering Laboratories and Ventyx.

“GridPoint provides an intelligent platform to aggregate and control a variety of energy resources in the home or business,” said Michael Carlson, CIO of Xcel Energy. “We’ll be able to test and confirm capabilities to meet the individual needs of our customers while also deploying new capabilities for balancing supply and demand in a clean and efficient manner.”

The platform’s modular, scaleable and upgradeable architecture enables Xcel Energy to deploy proven technologies (e.g. load control devices and advanced batteries) while creating a practical path for integrating new technologies (e.g. plug-in hybrid electric vehicles and fuel cells). Xcel Energy will be evaluating a variety of technology and system capabilities from GridPoint in conjunction with its SmartGridCity™ in Boulder, including, but not limited to:

  • Advanced Demand Management– Measuring, controlling and verifying select loads (e.g. electric water heaters, pool pumps, home appliances) as well as adjusting thermostats within a few degrees
  • Supply Management– Providing capacity and energy by discharging power to the electric grid from advanced batteries (including plug-in hybrid electric vehicles) or distributed solar systems during peak periods as well as recharging batteries from solar systems or the electric grid during off peak times
  • Solar PV Integration–“Plug-n-play” integration and operation of residential and light commercial solar energy systems, paving the way for the commercial success of renewable energy
  • Plug-in Hybrid Electric Vehicles (PHEV) Smart Charging– Charging PHEVs during off-peak periods, regardless of when consumers plug in PHEVs, which enables Xcel Energy to offer consumers significantly reduced rates for off-peak charging
  • Single Interface for Control– GridPoint Control Console, a single Web-based interface located in the utility control room, provides Xcel Energy with the ability to easily control distributed energy resources, thereby providing the equivalent performance of central station generation. The console also provides an interface to Xcel Energy’s enterprise systems including CIS, rates, billing, OMS, etc.
  • Online Energy Management– GridPoint Customer Portal, a password protected Web portal, enables Xcel Energy’s customers to reduce energy consumption according to their individual preferences. The portal also provides easy to understand environmental data based on an individual customer’s conservation efforts
  • Instant Backup Power– Providing customers with instant backup power through advanced batteries
  • Performance Monitoring and Customer Support– GridPoint Operations Center, the intelligent hub of the platform, provides remote performance monitoring of distributed energy resources and alerts GridPoint customer services representatives to preemptively address maintenance needs

“Xcel Energy’s vision for the Smart Grid and commitment to implementation demonstrate its leadership in the electric utility industry,” said Peter L. Corsell, President and CEO, GridPoint. “We are very excited to be working with such an innovative utility.”

To learn more about Xcel Energy’s SmartGridCity™, please see www.xcelenergy.com/smartgrid, which provides educational materials and graphics illustrating Xcel Energy’s Smart Grid vision.

GridPoint’s recent recognition includes being selected as a 2008 World Economic Forum Technology Pioneer, the overall winner by AlwaysOn GoingGreen 100 Top Private Companies 2007, one of the Red Herring 100 Global, and winner of the 2007 North American Frost & Sullivan Award for Green Excellence for its success in pioneering a way to harness load management and distributed generation to achieve environmental sustainability. GridPoint is featured in the new book Earth: The Sequel, a business-centric approach to alleviating climate changeby Fred Krupp, President of the Environmental Defense Fund, as well as in the Smart Grid chapter of The Clean Tech Revolution by Ron Pernick and Clint Wilder.

About Xcel Energy

Xcel Energy (NYSE:XEL) is a major U.S. electricity and natural gas company with regulated operations in eight Western and Midwestern states. Xcel Energy provides a comprehensive portfolio of energy-related products and services to 3.3 million electricity customers and 1.8 million natural gas customers through its regulated operating companies. Company headquarters are located in Minneapolis. More information is available at www.xcelenergy.com.

About GridPoint

GridPoint Inc., a leading clean tech company, is the pioneer of an innovative smart grid platform that aligns the interests of electric utilities, consumers and the environment through an intelligent network of distributed energy resources that controls load, stores energy and produces power. The platform applies information technology to the electric grid to enable distributed energy resources to perform the same as central-station generation. During peak periods, utilities efficiently balance supply and demand by discharging stored power from distributed generation assets or reducing customers’ non-essential loads through demand response programs. Additionally, utilities effectively optimize baseload generation assets and relieve stress on T&D assets. The platform’s modular, scaleable and upgradeable architecture enables utilities to deploy proven technologies, (e.g., load control devices and advanced batteries) while creating a practical path for integrating new technologies (e.g., plug-in hybrid electric vehicles (PHEVs) and fuel cells). For consumers, the platform provides protection from power outages, increases energy efficiency through online energy management and integrates renewable energy, paving the way for the commercial success of solar and wind energy sources. On the Net: www.gridpoint.com.

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