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The wide utilization of information and communication technologies is hoped to enable amore efficient and sustainable operation of electric power grids. This paper analyses the benefits of smart power grids for the integration of renewable energy resources into the existing grid infrastructure. Therefore, the concept of a smart power grid is analyzed, and it is shown that it covers more than for example, time-of-use energy tariffs. Further, the communication technologies used for smart grids are discussed, and the challenge of interoperability between the smart grid itself and its active contributors such as functional buildings is shown.
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