Public utility

Smart Grid Model Helps Plan Grid Upgrades

Carnegie Mellon University’s Software Engineering Institute (SEI) has released the 2011 Smart Grid Maturity Model (SGMM) update. The presentation, made during GridWeek 2011, provides updates on the worldwide community of SGMM users and partners. The SGMM is a management tool designed to help utilities map out and prioritize their smart grid plans, and measure progress as they upgrade the power grid. Developed by utilities for utilities, SGMM is hosted by the SEI as a resource for industry transformation with the support of the United States Department of Energy.

Itron and Krohne Partner to Offer Advanced Meter Technology to Water Utilities

Itron and Krohne have announced a partnership that will provide advanced water meter technology to utilities around the world. Under the terms of the agreement, signed recently at Itron’s facility in Mâcon, France, Krohne will supply water meters that leverage electromagnetic technology for Itron’s portfolio.

GridGlo Establishes New Base of Operation

GridGlo, a recently launched startup that specializes in data fusion and the development of smart grid applications, has leased office space in Delray Beach, Florida. GridGlo’s unique data platform has garnered enough interest from the utility industry to expand its base of operations. The new location provides enough room for growth, as the company seeks to hire more employees as it expand its operations.

Utility executives at KEMAs

Utility of the Future Leadership Forum predict smart grid will bring greatest industry disruption in century Customer demands will require utilities to develop new tech strategies and rethink centralized architecture. KEMA’s Fourth Annual Utility of the Future Leadership Forum brought together utility executives, energy innovators and decision-makers for a day-and-a-half discussion of the industry’s challenges and opportunities. Presentations and conversations focused on the high risks associated with the cutting-edge technologies that shape the utility landscape and the need to write the rulebook as it continues to grow and evolve. One critical takeaway is the disruptive effect of the smart grid and other recent market, technology and environmental trends, and the opportunities and challenges they will create.


The Environmental Defense Fund to Evaluate California Utiilities

The Environmental Defense Fund has released a framework to evaluate the effectiveness California public utilities’ plans to upgrade the state’s electricity network into a digital smart grid. The approved a roadmap last June based on the provisions of state law SB 17. It requires that utility smart grid investments help California meet its climate change, demand-side management and renewable energy goals.

CUBRC Partners with GridGlo

Research firm Cubrc has invested $1.2 million in GridGlo, a smart grid technology startup from Delray Beach, Florida. GridGlo sells software and services that enables utilities to see how and why their customers, primarily homeowners, are using electricity in real-time. They also provide utilities with an Energy People Scoring Mechanism (EPM) score that GridGlo would like to see  become a standard, similar to how the FICO score is to credit card issuers and other financial institutions.

Sensus Unveils Transceivers for Gas Utility Meters

Sensus has introduced SmartPoint GM transceivers for two-way communication with natural gas utility meters, which enables walk-by, drive-by, and fixed-base metering communications. The devices are easily installed on existing residential, commercial, or industrial meters and enable system-wide data collection and monitoring for improved customer service and operational efficiency. In addition, the transceivers are interoperable and designed to fit gas meters from a variety of manufacturers.

Maine Lawmakers Defer to PUC on Smart Meter Opt-Out Issue

Maine lawmakers are deferring to the Public Utilities Commission over whether or not consumers should have the right to opt out of having a smart meter installed by Central Maine Power (CMP). The state legislature’s Utilities and Energy Committee also shelved a bill that would have imposed a one-year ban on installation of the meters, meaning it is up to the Public Utilities Commission to determine the merits, costs, and effects of letting some people opt out of the program.

Consumers Willing to Buy Power from Non-Traditional Sources

According to new research by Accenture, a majority of consumers would consider buying electricity from companies other than traditional energy utilities. Revealing the Values of the New Energy Consumer polled 10,199 people in 18 countries and found that 73 percent would consider buying electricity, energy efficiency products, and related services from companies other than traditional energy providers such as product retailers, cable or phone companies, and online sites or brands.

Empower Launches Home Energy Portal

Web-based energy portal Empower Software has announced the launch of an advanced home energy portal for electricity, gas and water. Empower specializes in consumer usability. That expertise is leveraged with existing communication information channels in order to anticipate consumers’ future energy consumption based on their usage today. Empower says it works with the utility’s data and visually presents it to the consumer “in an easy to understand and meaningful way through a client portal or desktop application.” The company also says its application “is the only energy conservation tool to offer communication messaging and up to date energy monitoring across all three utilities.”