Proving the Business Case for the Internet of Things

Gibraltar plans smart meter pilot this year

Steve Rogerson
July 28, 2015
The Gibraltar Electricity Authority (GEA) hopes its upcoming smart-meter pilot will be operational by the end of 2015.
The GEA is Gibraltar’s principle generator, distributor and supplier of electricity and was established with the objective of supplying electricity in an efficient and economical manner, and to maintain and develop the network and generating system. Currently the GEA has approximately 20,000 customers divided into 20 per cent commercial and 80 per cent residential, which is expected to increase by 50 per cent within the next ten years.
German company Elster will provide the smart grid capabilities with a full end-to-end system, covering modular smart meters, G3-PLC communications modules, data concentrators, meter data collection and management, and installation services.
“We have chosen Elster to assist us in fulfilling EU and governmental directives on lowering carbon emissions and reducing end-customer energy consumption as Elster are able to deliver a full end-to-end PLC based solution with British Standard meters to our requirements” said Mario Federico, senior network engineer at the GEA. “As the single supplier for our pilot programme, not only was it important for the GEA to select an end-to-end smart metering provider that can offer the best technical solution, but also one that is able and capable of providing the GEA with the necessary technical support. After evaluating different PLC communications technology we found that the G3-PLC solution of Elster was the most suitable for our needs.”
Elster will supply the GEA with 1066 AS220 smart meters and 27 AS3000 and AS3500 modular smart meters, with AM540 G3-PLC communications modules, 12 RTU+Server2 transparent gateway data concentrators and the EIServer head end and meter data management suite.
The project will use the GEA’s own fibre optic network currently being installed for data flow between the gateways and the EIServer meter data collection system. Delivery of the hardware is expected by August, and the full system will be operational by end of 2015. It is expected that the end-to-end system will provide accurate energy consumption and power quality data, contributing to the reduction of customers’ energy consumption and also generation costs.
“The pilot project includes all the functions in the value chain, from advanced smart meters, communications modules, data concentrators and meter data collection and management,” said Kim Norgaard, global head of Elster. “This new contract with the GEA demonstrates that Elster is one of the few companies able to deliver fully in-house developed G3-PLC solutions to the market.”
Elster delivers complete smart grid and energy management products that drive energy efficiency, operational improvements and cost savings for utilities, commercial and industrial customers, and consumers. Its end-to-end electricity, water and gas offerings include advanced meters and sensors, secure communications, and data collection, management and analytics.