SMART GRID Mark Melka, Environmental Science, Senior, Lewis University Dr. Jerry Kavouras, Advisor, Lewis University Biology Discipline Library Research The electrical supply grid today consists of many large power generation sources, which through numerous local distribution systems and vast transmission networks power is provided to millions of users.Unfortunately, the technologies used within the electricity supply infrastructure have not changed in many decades, and so are much less reliable and efficient than what they could be, resulting in sporadic power outages that cost billions of dollars each year. Is it just money? In today's technologically-advanced society, a new system of infrastructure, sensors, and computer information technology is needed to create the smart grid of the future. The smart grid is an electrical network that has the ability to intelligently incorporate the actions of the entire group of users that are linked to it. The purpose of the smart grid is to efficiently and economically produce and deliver reliable, sustainable, high quality, and secure electricity supplies. The smart grid is a collaboration of different technologies and services that include up- to-the-second monitoring, immediate control and communication, as well as self-healing products that will do continuous self-assessments of the grid itself and be able to detect, analyze, take corrective actions, and restore disrupted connections. A major component of the smart grid will be the use of computer micro-processors that will allow for internet-enabled demand response, letting the user directly control their real-time electrical use. Also, another component will include clean and renewable distributed energy sources like solar, wind, hydro, and geothermal. Finally, the future smart grid will incorporate advanced energy-storage batteries which will allow for a smaller peak demand load on the utility companies. In conclusion the smart grid will be the way of the future when it comes to how individuals receive their energy and how they will wisely manage it. A future smart grid will be safe, economical, and environmentally friendly to lead the United States of America through the twenty-first century.