Smart Grid News and Analysis

IoT World Forum 2018
IoT World Forum 2018

Utilities and Grid Operators Will Invest More than $42 Billion in FACTS from 2014 to 2022


The growth in distributed renewable energy resources is driving demand for large-scale FACTS deployments, report concludes.

The first flexible alternating current transmission systems (FACTS), which mitigated voltage drops on the power grid, were deployed in the late 1920s.  Today, the rapid growth of large-scale renewable energy projects, which often supply intermittent power, is driving increased demand for FACTS.  According to a recent report from Navigant Research, cumulative investments by utilities and power grid operators in FACTS will total $42.3 billion from 2014 through 2022.

“The majority of electricity transmission systems in service today rely on many of the same technologies that existed at their conception more than a century ago,” says James McCray, senior research analyst with Navigant Research.  “Sophisticated FACTS technologies demonstrate tremendous potential to provide solutions to problems, such as localized voltage sag, power factor fluctuations, and flicker, that are caused by renewables intermittency, increasing industrial loads, and power plant retirements.”

The capital costs and uncertainty associated with new transmission grid and high-voltage substation construction are very high, especially in an era of distributed renewable energy resources, according to the report.  As a result, transmission grid operators and utilities seek to mitigate voltage drops over long-haul transmission lines, driving the requirement for new, large-scale FACTS deployments.

The report, “Flexible AC Transmission Systems”, analyzes the global market for FACTS technologies, including an analysis of the market issues, drivers, challenges, and regulatory factors related to FACTS systems.  Global capacity and revenue forecasts, segmented by converter type and region, extend through 2023, and include base, conservative, and aggressive scenarios.  The report also examines the key technologies and use cases associated with FACTS, and provides profiles of key industry players.  An Executive Summary of the report is available for free download on the Navigant Research website.