General Electric (GE) will collaborate with the California utility, Southern California Edison (SCE), to implement smart grid technologies by upgrading and modernizing the energy infrastructure in the state.

The demonstration project is funded by the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act and will also look to seamlessly integrate renewable energy sources across the grid.

Improvements will be made to the electric-distribution infrastructure, substations, residential homes, cyber security networks, battery energy storage systems and EV charging stations at the University of California as well as other competitor-supplied products to improve reliability of the modernized grid.

GE Digital Energy Software Solutions general manager Mike Carlson remarked that the project will develop the model for future technologies and infrastructure seeking to modernize the nation’s power grid.

Southern California Edison director of advanced technology Doug Kim added, "Consumers who have been hearing about a smarter electric grid will now experience it first hand. With increased insight, more options and greater control over their energy usage, consumers in this demonstration project will help us engineer a better energy future."

The project will validate the interoperability of new technologies to improve the efficiency, reliability and sustainability of grid assets.

Focus will also be on distribution circuit constraint management, enhanced circuit efficiency and power quality, self-healing circuits and deep-grid situational awareness.

The project is expected to kick off on 30 June 2013.