​Digital Grids And Smart Cities: The Future

Spends on IT, Infrastructure, Power and Water in The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia are set to hit record highs in 2014. Aggressive development plans coupled with past investments in infrastructure, health and education, Saudi Arabia has paved a way for sustainable and efficient energy distribution alongside a deep focus on the quality of living standards across it's nation. With an aim of raising the contribution to the GDP by 20 percent by 2020, the Saudi Arabian Government and it's partners are committed on completing the development of it's smart city projects within project deadlines. By investing billions of dollars into the creation of economic cities in different regions, these projects have provided ample opportunities designed to maximize investment potential as well as deliver huge advantages to both the commercial and domestic sector.

Fleming.'s Digital Grids And Smart Cities Summit, scheduled to take place between 5th & 6th of May, 2014 in Riyadh, has garnered immense response from the project stakeholders implementing roll-outs to technology specialist who are keen to bring global solutions customized to current needs. Talking about the summit, Dr. Saad Al Kahtani, Broadband Expert, Former CEO of STC Group Strategic Operations and Member of the UN Broadband Commission said "I am confident that the 2nd Annual Digital Grids and Smart Cities Summit will contribute to ensure that ICT and Broadband are embedded in all of the National Targets of our country for a better future for our youth".

The summit will cover a range of topics such as Demand Management Systems and Distribution Automation in Smart Grids, Power Quality Assessment in Smart Grids, The Role of Telecommunications in a Smart City, Securing the Big Data. A regional perspective came from Professor Ibrahim M. El-Amin from King Fahd University of Petroleum and Minerals, a speaker at the summit, who said “ The demand for the electric energy in the Kingdom is increasing at extremely high rates. The current energy demand will triple in magnitude reaching over 600 TWh by 2030. Power System planners and operators are thus faced with unprecedented challenges. The introduction of new technologies in generation, transmission, distribution and customer services will transform the Saudi grid into a smart grid requiring new knowledge and expertise. The challenges are coupled with the introduction of electricity markets open to a number of producers and services providers. Modern advanced electric equipment will impact the quality of power and supply. Consumers will demand and seek high levels of power quality from the modern smart grids at the lowest cost available. Regulators –on the hand- would demand high quality of supply under strict regulatory laws and standards”.