According to Our World in Data, 13 percent of the world’s population does not have access to adequate electricity. Low-income and rural areas in particular struggle with unreliable or inadequate electricity, largely due to a lack of energy infrastructure.
Many of these communities rely on microgrids to receive electricity, localized energy sources that are connected to larger grids but can also function independently. Managing these grids in order to provide adequate electricity requires constant monitoring, though, which is where energy meters that give grid visibility come in handy.
One D.C.-headquartered grid management platform, SparkMeter, is helping connect more people with reliable energy through its advanced grid visibility software. The grid management solution helps utility providers manage energy fluctuations and improve reliability. On Thursday, the company announced it raised $10 million in new funding to accelerate its growth and accelerate retirement of old, dirty diesel generators in favor of cleaner energy sources.
SparkMeter’s technology allows utility companies to gain greater insight into grid performance through its plug-and-play management software. The software creates a “digital twin” of energy grids by combining real-time data with detailed models, increasing grid visibility and making it easier to respond to congestion, line and transformer stress, and more.
“SparkMeter has become the most widely used plug-and-play grid management technology using advanced meters,” the company’s CEO and founder Dan Schnitzer said in a statement. “It’s the most economical solution available to utilities in emerging markets when it comes to data reliability in places with low bandwidth internet, while also providing meter to cash capabilities and in-depth grid analytics.”
The new funding led by Accurant International brings the company’s total financing to $22 million and will allow SparkMeter to grow.
The company plans to release the first stage of its new software platform, Koios, next month. The Koios interface will provide microgrids and utility distributors with meter-to-cash, detailed system insights, and smooth integrations.
“SparkMeter has been very successful in the microgrid sector, and its latest technology development will enable the expansion of reliable power to distribution utilities in the same underserved regions,” said a statement from Carmichael Roberts of Breakthrough Energy Ventures, another investment company that contributed to the funding round.