Middleware architectures have proven to be of major importance when dealing with distributed systems, as they are able to abstract the inevitable heterogeneity of the hardware devices present in a deployment with the aim of offering a collection of interfaces and resources of homogeneous appearance to the upper, application‐oriented layers. In an energy‐based distributed system as the Smart Grid, this role is replicated, as the hardware devices that are found, while essentially related to the power grid and the functionalities that can be extracted from it (advanced metering infrastructure, remote terminal units, renewable energy resources, etc.), still present the same challenges that other distributed systems are expected to deal with, such as heterogeneous features, different information formats, diversity of their performance procedures, or integration and interconnectivity issues. Therefore, a middleware architecture is still of major usability in the power grid. This chapter offers information about the common features that are present in a middleware architecture that works under the requirements and use cases typical of the Smart Grid, as well as offers examples on how middleware integrates legacy, proprietary, and newly developed pieces of equipment within the same distributed energy grid.
Part of the book: Energy Management of Distributed Generation Systems