Clay Electric selects Landis+Gyr for AMI deployment

Clay Today
Posted 3/15/17

ATLANTA – Clay Electric Cooperative is investing $26 million to launch what’s called advanced metering infrastructure.

Co-op officials said a financial analysis indicates the cost of this …

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Clay Electric selects Landis+Gyr for AMI deployment

Posted

ATLANTA – Clay Electric Cooperative is investing $26 million to launch what’s called advanced metering infrastructure.

Co-op officials said a financial analysis indicates the cost of this project will be offset over time through lowered operational costs, improved efficiencies and gains in productivity.

Clay Electric has chosen Atlanta-based Landis+Gyr to install the project using its Gridstream AMI solution, which provides an RF mesh IP network platform capable of connecting meters and intelligent devices across the utility’s service territory.

“Our advanced metering project is focused on enhancing member services and improving operational efficiency,” said Toby Moss, director of information and communication technology at Clay Electric Cooperative. “Included in that is the ability to offer prepay and other billing options to customers, as well as improve outage response and system maintenance.”

According to Wayne Mattox, manager of communications at Clay Electric, the co-op’s board of trustees looked at all the facts and costs surrounding AMI and decided early last year that it was time for the co-op to make the move to the new technology.

Mattox said the co-op made the decision for a number of key reasons. AMI provides new payment options to its members, optimizes maintenance and replacement operations by being able to predict where and when new infrastructure assets would be needed, will help staff identify outages quicker and restore power quicker. Mattox said AMI also puts members in control by providing daily energy usage data which can help our members troubleshoot high bill problems as well as manage their daily usage of power and improve electric service reliability and power quality – fewer outages, blinks and surges.

Landis+Gyr’s RF mesh network provides IPv6 capable endpoints and intelligent routers that offer flexible communication options for connecting with a variety of energy management equipment, such as load management devices, streetlight controllers, distribution automation devices and home area network equipment.

The AMI deployment is a lengthy process involving significant planning for the software, hardware, network design and implementation of the entire system.

“The vendor selection has been a meticulous process with a cross section of professionals from Clay Electric weighing in to ensure our service and support to our members is kept as a top priority. Additionally, we have performed thorough research on the technology. We also have consulted with several other utilities who already are running an AMI network, throughout the country, to gain a benefit from their experiences,” Mattox said.

Clay Electric plans to begin deploying the network infrastructure and 173,000 new meters this summer, with a goal of completing the project in 2019.

“This project showcases the strength of our communications network for both rural and urban applications,” said Tim Weidenbach, senior vice president of sales and customer operations for Landis+Gyr. “We look forward to working with Clay Electric to strengthen their customer service programs and overall grid reliability.”

Mattox said the cooperative does not expect any additional costs to its members to install the new system nor are there any rate increases anticipated in association with this project.

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