Illinois utility to install smart meters for gas and electric customers 11 AUGUST 2016

US power utility Ameren Illinois announced its plan to implement an automated metering infrastructure project to optimise its operations in Logan County.

The metering project includes the replacement of 15,500 existing electric and gas meters with new smart meters as from late August throughout 2016.

The utility firm is aiming to lower power outages for its residential and small business customers through quick detection of network malfunctions.

The smart metering systems will also help customers of Ameren Illinois to use their energy in a more sustainable manner through the implementation of energy efficiency programmes.

The installation of the smart meters will force the power company to use web-based and mobile applications to allow consumers to view their energy usage online and in real time.

According to a local publication, the upgrade project will be implemented in 24 towns including Atlanta, Midland city and Middletown. [Itron and Landis+Gyr enhance smart meter connectivity].

Gussie Reed, director of operations at Ameren Illinois in Logan County, said: “Advanced meters contribute to greater service reliability and offer more customer benefits. Enhancing reliability and providing access to energy information is going to be an energy- and cost-saving advantage for our customers in the future.”

Adoption of smart metering systems

In related news, the US city of Edmond in Oklahama state announced that it kickstarted a pilot project to test the viability of smart metering in enhancing the city’s gas and electricity distribution systems.

According to a local publication, the city is implementing the pilot for six months.

The project includes installation of the smart meters in public schools, residential homes and commercial buildings.

The city officials are planning to convert all of the city’s 35,000 electric and 32,000 gas meters into smart meters if the pilot yields positive results.

The city is planning to enhance grids management through a two-way communication between consumers and utilities provided by the smart meters.

The Superior Water, Light and Power (SWL&P) also filed its plans to deploy an AMI system to improve its services for approval by the Public Service Commission of Wisconsin.

In a press statement, the utility said if approved, the 5 year plan will allow replacement of existing analog meters with smart meters for remote and accurate water, gas and electric meter readings. [Global smart electricity meters market worth $7bn by 2021].

The new meters will provide a platform for the utility to implement energy and water efficiency programmes such as Time of Use power pricing.

By putting the projects into practice, SWL&P is hoping to help consumers practice sustainable usage of power and water to reduce their bills.