Proving the Business Case for the Internet of Things

Sensus releases next-generation smart meter

Iain Morris
September 2, 2014
Tech developer Sensus has released a new version of its smart meter that it says will give utilities more control over energy supply and operations.

The meters are intended to help companies better monitor and control infrastructure to balance supply and demand and, restore services faster after outages and encourage consumers to conserve electricity.

“The Sensus Gen4 smart meters, which have been in development for three years, offer a host of innovative technologies that bring compelling new benefits to utilities and consumers in the areas of operational efficiency, safety and reliability of service,” said Randy Bays, the president of Sensus [Raleigh, NC, USA]. “This is a significant step forward as we continuously evolve our technology – including meters, communication systems and data analytics – to help customers realize the full benefits of a smarter grid.”

“We’re excited by the positive feedback we have received about our latest meters from customers who have begun using them,” he added.

Sensus says it is offering two types of Generation 4 meter, both of which come with high temperature detection technology allowing utilities to receive real-time notifications about heating issues.

The A type is available without any upgrade to communications network software, meaning customers can take immediate advantage of the technology, while the B type requires an upgrade to the regional network interface to enable all features.

Sensus claims the B meter is the industry’s first to include “opt-out capability”, allowing utilities to control radio frequency transmitters remotely.

However, both types will work on the Sensus FlexNet communications system, which delivers meter data that utilities can use to help with transformer optimization and integrating distributed generation.

Sensus says the FlexNet system also dedicates distinct channels to specific applications to reduce the latency that can occur when multiple applications share the same channel.

That means utilities can prioritize time-sensitive applications like distributed automation, remote shut off and demand response.
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