Proving the Business Case for the Internet of Things

Vision sees Semtech LoRa for smart meters

Steve Rogerson
May 19, 2020



South Carolina-based IoT utility metering developer Vision Metering has incorporated Semtech’s LoRa devices and the LoRaWan protocol into its smart electric meters and meter interface units for water and gas meters.
 
Vision’s LoRa-based applications enable the upgrade of legacy metering, requiring traditional walk-by or drive-by reading methods, to fixed, long range AMI (advanced metering infrastructure), for hourly or daily data transfer over LoRaWans for efficient utility management and billing.
 
“Semtech’s LoRa devices provide the ideal IoT platform for cooperative and public owned utilities to future proof municipal operations, enabling the simple deployment of interoperable applications while avoiding costly vendor lock-in,” said Randy Austin, president and CEO of Vision. “The applications’ minimal deployment cost, scalability based on customer need and ease of use make them attractive to transform legacy systems. Vision’s LoRa-based AMI-based meters enable smarter overall energy monitoring with reduced operating cost.”
 
In the USA, cooperative and public-owned utilities provide services for thousands of communities accounting for nearly 30 per cent of the total market. Unlike investor-owned utilities, these operators often do not have access to the latest advancements in metering technology and use legacy systems, which are difficult and expensive to read.
 
Vision’s smart AMI-based meters, leveraging the LoRaWan protocol, combine long-range networking and low-power operation, as well as LoRa devices’ advantages for simple deployment, to transform legacy applications quickly. These LoRa-enabled electric meters access LoRaWans to communicate energy use data in real time.
 
Deploying quickly with little additional infrastructure cost and scaling based on customer need, Vision’s LoRa-based meters can enable cooperatives and public utilities to reduce costs and achieve smarter, efficient energy management.
 
Vision recently announced the completion of a new LoRa-based metering project for the city of Mountain View, Missouri. With a total infrastructure cost of less than $8200, the city was able to install a LoRaWan-based gateway and retrofit all electric meters in the city. As a result, the city receives energy use data from every meter at 15-minute intervals, enabling accurate and efficient monitoring, and cost savings because of reduced waste.
 
“Vision’s AMI smart meters leverage LoRa devices’ proven capabilities for the utility vertical to provide public and cooperative utilities with flexible deployment options and real-time data to improve efficiency,” said Marc Pegulu, vice president of IoT for Semtech. “LoRa devices and the LoRaWan protocol enable long-range, efficient and data driven metering to drive sustainable energy grids and reduce cost.”
 
Semtech’s LoRa devices are widely adopted long-range, low-power products for the IoT that give telecom companies, IoT application makers and system integrators the feature set to deploy low-cost, interoperable IoT networks, gateways, sensors, module products and IoT services worldwide. IoT networks based on the LoRaWan specification have been deployed in 100 countries and Semtech is a founding member of the LoRa Alliance.
 
Vision Metering is an electrical and electronic manufacturing company based out of York, South Carolina.