General Electric (GE) recently announced its plans to purchase FMC-Tech, a power monitoring company based in Ireland, as a result of the company’s 2010 Ecomagination Challenge that focused on powering and properly utilizing future smart grids.
FMC-Tech is reportedly one of about a dozen investments that have resulted from last year’s grid competition that was supported by four venture capital firms. As we’ve recently covered, this year’s Ecomagination Challenge focuses on home energy management, which would fall more under smart meter territory rather than the grid as a whole.
Technology from the Irish company acquired from GE focuses on real-time data about outages and available capacity, as well as management of maintenance crews in the field.
Grid management will only become more important as more and more consumers purchase and fuel electric vehicles or plug-in hybrids, however, some reports suggest utility providers are unprepared for the potential impact. GE seems to be looking ahead, because even if electric cars aren’t adopted on a wide-scale, population and usage will still continue rise.