Are You Smart Enough to

whirrtarragonΗλεκτρονική - Συσκευές

21 Νοε 2013 (πριν από 4 χρόνια και 7 μήνες)

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Are You Smart Enough to
Implement Smart Grid?

Angela Riley, Metering Supervisor

City of San Marcos

San Marcos, TX

Home of Texas State University

29,500 students

San Marcos River

Spring fed river

72 degrees year

Population approx. 50,000

19,500 electric customers

9,200 water customers

Why AMI?

way communication

Quicker connects and disconnects

2,300 remote disconnect meters installed

Read And Leave agreement with most apartment

System integrity

6,100 voltage recording meters

Includes all commercial meters, AX meters, and remote
disconnect meters

Customer service

Interval usage data available on line

On demand meter reads

A common mistake some people make is thinking an AMI system
will result in a reduction of workforce.

Please know that an AMI system will not necessarily result in
salary savings.

The meter reading function will mostly go away, but personnel
will need to be reallocated to different positions.

Meter Technicians

Trouble shooting meters



Meter reading will be limited

Fire hydrant meters

Missing reads for meters that will not communicate (isolated areas)

Interval reading data from an AMI system

Creates more work

detailed reports from interval data

Requires more data storage than the monthly read you get from an AMR

Hired a Consultant

benefit Analysis and ROI for Council Approval

RFI/RFP for a Wireless Mesh Network

Assisted with Vendor Selection

Recommendations to Maximize Functionality of AMI

Future Business Designs

Assisted with Pilot Program and Deployment

We are using one product for

Water and Electric





Network Manager

Meters Communicate through a Data Pathway



Local Area Network (LAN)

meter to meter

Random encryption for each transaction

Wide Area Network (WAN)

network to host

Banking level security

Annual code, but can be changed at any time if Eka
sees a possible security breech

256 bit encryption


user operations

Password protected

Set internally by the utility based on specific user

Pilot Program

Headed by a Project Manager

Include Representatives in all Involved Departments


Metering Supervisor

Meter Technician/Analyst


Water Distribution Manager

Utility Crew Leader

Utility Billing


Q/A Specialist

Technical Services (IT)

Geographic Information Services (GIS)

Upper Management (as required)

Key People are the Key to Success

Weekly Status meetings to include vendor from testing through

7 months of testing

Contract written so vendor is at risk, not the City


1 month long

50 meters installed (5 water)

To ensure the wireless mesh was running and
communicating to the network


6 months

450 meters installed (50 water)

To test the functionality of the wireless mesh and

To test integration with our Harris billing system

500 Meters Installed

Electric was relatively simple

Water had some problems

Node installations (node = transmitting device)

Nodes not transmitting

Meter lids


Water meters

Integrating with our Harris billing system


99.5% success rate for previous week’s reads

Identified a customer with a water leak during the first week

What We Learned

Testing took longer than expected

Strong, cooperative relationship is necessary with the vendor

During integration, the utility must take an
active roll to coordinate relations between the
Billing system vendor and the AMI vendor.

Added Three Servers

One for interval read data coming into our Harris billing
system (

Interval Data


Billing purposes

Customer web view

Two for

network system (Network Manager) and
reporting module (Data Manager)

Views Created between

Reporting Module and
our NSID

Allows real
time access to the databases

Reduces workload by automating processes

Reduces chances for human error

We have not purchased a Meter Data Management
System, so the NSID is our temporary solution at this

Fully Integrated Eka Functionality into our
Harris Billing System

Service connects/disconnects

demand reads

Demand resets

Interval reads for viewing

Where to Store?

Lots of discussion:

or Harris?

Multipliers are being stored in the billing system

Harris Systems added the multiplier to the view for

use for reporting purposes only in Data Manager

Water Meter Multipliers Changing

Before AMI, all readings were modified to calculate
usage based on a multiplier of 100.

With AMI, we changed the way we read water meters. All
dials are read and the meter multiplier depends on the
type of meter (0.1, 1.0, or 10)

The multiplier had to be changed so we could see the
resolution for leak detection and water loss

Meters Can’t Always Communicate with Collectors


‘nodes’ allow meters to backfill data in the network
once communications re

However, when polling reads for billing, some meters may
not be reporting

Created a Gap Fill function in the billing system to fill the holes

Calculates the gap automatically

Important because future functionality to include Time Of Use billing

Reason: No Validation, Editing, Estimation (VEE) yet

Demand resets

Can’t guarantee demand reset at time of reading, so demand
calculations are set in the billing system

Demand calculations are based off of interval readings

Demand meters report reads every 30 or 15 minutes

Resets will still be requested through the network monthly as

Reporting is very important!

Allows you to discover problems in the network, such as:

Communication failures

meters not reporting


Duplication of data in meter inventory

Hi/Low voltage

CT installation problems

Outage reporting

Possible dead meters

Continuous Flow

leak detection

Negative consumption

Some reports developed by

Systems as part of our

City of San Marcos requesting special reports to fit our needs

Full Deployment

Steps to take

Plan and deploy ‘collectors’ first

By the end of deployment, you will probably install more
than expected to increase redundancy in the network

Plan electric meter installations starting around the
collectors first and move outwards

Allows meters to form to the network faster

Reduces pockets in the network

Plan water meter installations to follow electric

Water meters only communicate to electric meters or
collectors, not other water meters

Always work schedules around your meter reading and
billing schedules

Two Schedules


Contracted with TMD through Eka

6 months to complete



About 12 months to complete

Follows electric


Mailer and Maps (not a bill stuffer)

Press Releases

Maps in Lobbies of City Facilities


Door Hangers

Completed change

Access issue

Information Cards


Very important!!!

Same education as customers

Training sessions for Workflow Changes

Time consuming process

Multiple tasks to prepare

Organize a “To
do” list

This list will be lengthy

Divide amongst departments


Empower staff with assignments

Project manager follow up

Electric examples:

Deployment schedules

Determine quantities of meters & locations

Order extra metering supplies (seals, locks, disc sleeves)

Storage space (new & old meters, extra supplies)

Supplies for contractor (ID’s, vehicle magnets, keys)

Meter Exchange testing

Train staff

Customer Notification & schedule

Custom reports & specs

Increase staff in office

Meter shipments/inventory

File creations & uploads for exchanges

Review upload files for exchanges

Service upgrades & emergency meter base repairs

Who will take responsibility? Budget?

City of San Marcos took the responsibility

Contract with an electrician for the project

Objective: keep the project on target and restore power quickly for customers


Be prepared for replacing damaged boxes, resetting boxes, and
repairing leaks

Install a Variety of Meters

Increase Functionality of the AMI System

Reporting Capabilities

Meters San Marcos Selected

Landis &

AL (14,000)

Landis &

AX (2,000)

Report line voltage

Landis &

SD (2,300)

Allow remote service disconnect

Report line voltage


A3D (1,800)

Demand meter

Report line voltage


Before AMI, minimal meter data stored

Meter number

Residential vs. commercial


With AMI, changed inventory to include many more details

Meter number is prefaced by meter form number

2s meter numbers start with 2 (ex: 200222), 4s meter numbers start with 4, and so on…

Helps meter technicians identify meter types easier

Meter Form

Meter Manufacturer

Meter Type

A3D (demand)

AL (regular residential)

AX (voltage recording)

SD (service disconnect)

Purchase date

Purchase cost

Important changes for analyzing the meters in your network and
inventory, especially through GIS

Test the Program

Test as much as possible before deployment

Start deployment slow to work out unexpected

Verify Removal Reads to Avoid Overbilling

Photograph final read on meter

Review final consumption (hi/low) to locate
misreads and make edits before uploading the file
into the billing system

Prepare Meter Dept. Staff for Problems

everything funnels here and to Billing staff

Water Services Extend Outside of our Electric
Service Territory

Negotiations with Neighboring Utilities were
Necessary to Establish Communication


Electric Cooperative (PEC)

Bluebonnet Electric Cooperative (BEC)

Metering points were not necessary,

just installation and attachment fees

Future Plans

Customer Web View

Interval Read Data

Energy Profile Chart

Energy Conservation Tips

Meter Data Management System (MDMS)

Outage Management System (OMS)

Time of Use Billing

Conservation Reporting (water)


Angela Riley

Metering Supervisor

Public Services

Electric Utility