S Korea to cooperate with Illinois to in "smart grid" construction

19:46, January 20, 2010      

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South Korea and the U.S. state of Illinois on Wednesday agreed to cooperate in the creation of a " smart grid" network in the United States, the economy ministry said.

According to a press release by the Ministry of Knowledge Economy, Minister Choi Kyung-hwan and Warren Ribley, head of Illinois's Department of Commerce, signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) to set up a pilot community in South Korea, conduct research and development (R&D) and the training of related personnel.

Under the plan, the two sides will use the pilot community on Jeju Island to check feasibilities of existing technologies and operational models, from which they will localize tips gained for use in Illinois, the ministry said.

"With the MOU, South Korea gained a foothold in the giant U.S. energy grid sector, while giving Illinois a chance to attract business investments and create jobs," a ministry official was quoted as saying by South Korea's Yonhap News Agency.

The deal, which is expected to maximize the strengths of both sides, will expand the wide-scale use of the grid system," the official said.

A smart grid refers to an emerging technology that allows real- time monitoring of electricity output and demand, which has been designed to incorporate solar panels and wind generators into the main power grid, and lets consumers store energy and sell it back to the power company.

Source: Xinhua
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