Russia is the world’s third largest consumer of energy, and as such the country has announced plans and programs to modernize its energy infrastructure, especially for the nation’s power sector. Currently, the Russian national power grid includes more than 230 GW of production capacity. The country’s utilities are known as energos. These energos operate more than 31,000 T&D substations located throughout multiple regions and time zones. There are almost 800 large scale power plants in the country, including 15 nuclear sites operating some 35 reactors. Seven new nuclear units are now under construction as of mid-2017.
The world’s Tier One power equipment manufacturers each have a position in the Russian market for generation transmission and distribution. Each has made significant multi-hundred million-dollar (and some, multi-billion dollar) investments in the country. Cumulatively, the Tier One providers along with other very large equipment manufacturers from Asia and a few non-Russian Eastern European suppliers account for as much as 75% of all capital equipment used in the electricity sector today (Newton-Evans estimate). However, for lower cost MV equipment and for automation components, there is a growing presence of in-country manufacturers and suppliers, as well as important roles being played by market participants from China, India and other Asian countries, especially for electronic devices.
In terms of smart grid computer applications, there are a host of Russian companies providing integration and installation services, as well as developing a wide range of smart grid applications either to work in conjunction with systems being provided by the likes of ABB, GE-Alstom, Siemens and Schneider Electric.
Continue reading A Closer Look at the Changing Russian Electric Power Industry