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A smart grid initiative
by the energy and ICT french
business and research clusters



Population growth, increasing energy consumption and environmental issues create new demands and expectations in terms of renewable energy sources, grid management and consumer behavior. Many states are positioning themselves in the SmartGrids market which they see as opportunities for high value, long term employment creation and to support economic growth through the exporting of know-how. Ten French business and research clusters, specialized in the area of energy and ICT have come together to form SmartGrids French Clusters to foster collaboration and exchange with the view to building up and highlighting the value of the French SmartGrids sector. This consortium, the first of its kind in Europe, will convey the vision and the strategic orientations of the business and research clusters, which have a regional base, regarding the future of energy grids and energy management, and the notions of SmartGrids and SmartCities.

Crédit photo : Flickr emmanuelvivier Réseau électrique Centrale photovoltaïque EoliennesCrédit photo : Flickr universeist


Fibres EnergivieCapenergiesDerbiImages et RéseauxMEDEEMinalogicS2E2SCSSystematicTenerrdis


By enabling the development and the integration of renewable energies within the power grid, SmartGrids represent a significant lever for the energy transition. The new services it provides favor both the control and the optimization of the energy consumption. Three major industrial challenges are at the core of the SmartGrids.

A new network architecture

Crédit photo : Flickr universeist
Crédit photo : Flickr Universeist

The development of renewable energies are a true challenge for the power grid. Their intermittence and their decentralization force the network operators to rethink their processes. Networks will progressively become bi-directional and their topology will be affected. SmartGrids will make best use of the investments needed by this evolution.

Turn the power grid into a Smart system reacquires a large range of competences and technologies from three types of actors : energy companies (energy suppliers, energy devices manufacturers), telecom and software companies and electronic companies  for the designing of new Smart devices. In these domains, France disposes of both world leaders and innovative start-ups. However, the number of medium size players remain  insufficient.

Optimize consumption

Crédit photo : Flickr Brian Talbot
Crédit photo : Flickr Brian Talbot

Technologies and services for energy efficiency are expected to increasingly interact with the network. They will optimize access to energy sources and cope with a more decentralized network. The consumption peaks are a critical element because of the risks they consist of for the network balance.

Smart meters will play a key role in between new energy efficiency features and network constraints management. Its deployment is essential. Buildings may be consuming energy at some point of the day, they may also be producing energy at some other, so they should be considered as a chance for innovation. The Smart meter will be an element of this evolution, it will foster innovations in technologies, services and active uses. It will be a major challenge in the up-coming years.


Crédit photo : Flickr emmanuelvivier
Credit photo : Flickr emmanuelvivier

More than 50% of the global population lives in cities: 70% in 2050. Cities already represent 75% of the world-wide energy consumption and 80% of the CO2 emissions.

Optimisation of the energy consumption will imply to re-think the entire urban power system: storage, demand response, waste mechanization, CO2 emission reduction and so on. On a similar basis, mobility will need more and more advanced technologies and charging infrastructures.

Several pilot project have already been deployed in France (e.g. via funding programs managed by the ADEME and the ANR).


SmartGrids French Clusters gathers business and research clusters in order to :

  • Enable large scale deployment of SmartGrids in France
  • Foster the development of a french SmartGrids industry

The works carried out by SmartGrids French Clusters are organized around three themes:



Business and research clusters expertise is aknoweldged by the entire SmartGrids industry. They have already invested more than € 1.2 billions in more than 200 funded and planned SmartGrids projects.