Alpine Energy is set to deploy 36,000 advanced meters in South Canterbury.

Alpine Energy (AEL) today announced that it has signed an agreement with SmartCo to deploy advanced meters across its electricity distribution network in South Canterbury. The deployment also includes a SilverSpring RF mesh communications network. 

Alpine Energy (AEL) today announced that it has signed an agreement with SmartCo to deploy advanced meters across its electricity distribution network in South Canterbury. The deployment also includes a SilverSpring RF mesh communications network.

RF mesh is a communications system on which advanced meters communicate.

The meters will be owned by AEL and will replace the current legacy meters that AEL own throughout South Canterbury.
SmartCo is a consortium of electricity lines companies that serve urban and rural customers across New Zealand (WEL Networks, Alpine Energy, Electricity Invercargill, Network Tasman, The Power Company and Network Waitaki).

SmartCo will process the data for Retailer revenue billing and network management purposes.
AEL Chief Executive Andrew Tombs says that the journey towards advanced meters began in earnest in 2009 and like other likeminded lines companies AEL see the meter as an integral part of a smart network, which is all about delivering more efficient electricity distribution in South Canterbury.
“One of the benefits of our $14million investment in advanced meters is the ability to monitor parts of the network in real-time which in turn allows our control room operator to identify faults sooner and therefore instigate steps to restore power faster”.

“In addition and over time there is also the potential for consumers to monitor their power usage in real-time thus allowing them to make decisions on consuming energy more efficiently”.
Deployment of advanced meters is planned from the first quarter of 2014 with completion envisaged by the 2016.

To date AEL’s replacement of meters has been to replace like with like and to ensure compliance with the regulations. None of these meters to date have been advanced meters. Regulatory deadlines for compliance meant we couldn’t stop replacing old meters with modern equivalent meters so over time the recently installed modern meters will be replaced with an advanced meter. Options for reusing the like for like meters are currently being considered.

The new advanced meter is manufactured by Landis and Gyr out of Australia.