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Challenge <p> Low Cost No Revenue-grade Smart Meters for Microgrids</p>

Low Cost No Revenue-grade Smart Meters for Microgrids

Award:  $15,000 USD
STATUS: Under Eval
Active Solvers: 111
Posted: Sep 04 2017
Challenge ID: 9934058
Team Project Rooms are available on this Challenge. Team Share Challenge Share

Microgrids are small-scale versions of centralized electrical power systems that provide affordable electricity to people in rural areas that are too far to be connected to the main grid, therefore fighting “Energy poverty” in emerging countries.

The Seeker is interested in low cost, smart meters that can help managing microgrids and better generate, distribute, and regulate the flow of electricity to consumers. Furthermore, considering the lack of regulation that often affects the microgrids environment, the Seeker is looking for technological solution for meters not revenue-graded (i.e., meters have not to be certified from a metrological point of view)

This Theoretical Challenge requires only a written proposal.


Electrification of rural areas in emerging countries is one of the major challenges faced by power utilities because traditional business models and technologies are often not viable options in such contexts. Microgrids – a modern, small-scale version of a centralized electrical system – are one of the solutions found by utilities to reduce “Energy poverty” and provide affordable electricity to people in rural areas that are too far from the main grid. Microgrids achieve specific local goals, such as reliability, carbon emission reduction, diversification of energy sources, and cost reduction.

The missing piece to improve microgrids is to make them “smarter” in order to, more efficiently, generate, distribute, and regulate the flow of electricity to consumers. Therefore, the Seeker is interested in low cost, smart meters that can help achieving this objective.

This is a Theoretical Challenge that requires only a written proposal to be submitted. The Challenge award will be contingent upon theoretical evaluation of the proposal by the Seeker.

To receive an award, the Solvers will not have to transfer their exclusive IP rights to the Seeker. Instead, Solvers will grant to the Seeker a non-exclusive license to practice their solutions. 

Submissions to this Challenge must be received by 11:59 PM (US Eastern Time) on October 4, 2017. Late submissions will not be considered.



The Enel Group is a multinational energy company and one of the world’s leading integrated electricity and gas operators. The ENEL Group works in more than 30 countries across 4 continents, generating energy with a net installed capacity of around 82 GW and distributing electricity and gas across a network spanning about 1.9 million km. With more than 64 million end users around the world, ENEL has the biggest customer base among our European competitors, and is one of Europe’s leading energy companies by installed capacity and reported EBITDA. Nearly 62,500 people work in Enel Group around the world.

Our portfolio of power stations is highly diversified, running on hydroelectric, wind, geothermal, solar, thermoelectric, nuclear and other renewable sources of power. Almost half of the energy generated by Enel is produced with zero carbon dioxide emissions, making the group one of the leading producers of clean energy.

We manage around 35 GW of installed capacity from water, wind, geothermal, solar, biomass and co-generation plants in Europe, the Americas, India and Africa. Enel is the most technologically diversified company operating in the global renewables sector.

Enel is a pioneer in developing and rolling-out smart metering solutions, starting from the rollout for 32 million customers in italy in 2001; currently Enel Smart Metering solution is installed in more than 40 million customers worldwide.

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An InnoCentive Theoretical Challenge builds upon an idea but is not yet a proof of concept. A solution to a Theoretical Challenge will solidify the Solver's concept with detailed descriptions, specifications and requirements necessary to bringing a good idea closer to becoming an actual product or service.

This Challenge is a Theoretical-Licensing Challenge, meaning that the Seeker is requesting non-exclusive rights to use the winning solution. By contrast, Theoretical-IP Transfer means that Solvers must relinquish all rights to the Intellectual Property (IP) for which they are awarded. For these forms of a Theoretical Challenge, Solvers that do not win retain the rights to their solution after the evaluation period is complete. The Seeker retains no rights to any IP not awarded.

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