Advanced Metering Infrastructure (AMI)
Over the past 20 years, URE has made substantial investments in infrastructure, building one of the most technologically advanced power control systems in Ohio. In 2014, the URE board of trustees approved an Advanced Metering Infrastructre (AMI) project to further strenghthen our distribution system and provide additional member benefits.
UREs AMI system uses two-way communications over a secure wireless network to provide members the latest in advanced metering technology. Upgrades were made at no additional cost to metered residential and commercial members. URE’s AMI meters read up-to-the-minute electric energy use information and allow customers to track their electricity use by the hour. Readings are transmitted remotely over the AMI network.
AMI meters offer unparalleled technology
AMI meters are approximately the same size as mechanical meters, but feature an LCD digital display showing how much energy has been used. Unlike traditional meters, which were read once a month manually by a meter reader, AMI meters transmit daily readings to the cooperative. Energy use and charges are in no way affected by the type of meter. URE owns the AMI meters, and they are part of our electrical distribution system. The meter base is still owned by the member.
Upgrades improve efficiency, service for members
- The automated system improves service for AMI meter members, as connects, re-connects and transfers of service are handled remotely and immediately.
- Reducing the number of trucks on the road also saves time and resources and helps contribute to cleaner air throughout our service area.
- The AMI meters may detect the loss of power during outages and send out an alert, allowing URE to quickly detect the location and restore power to members.
- URE receives detailed information on member electric use for billing purposes, and automation ensures accuracy. This data also helps us to allocate crews more efficiently and identify underused or overused transformers. It also helps URE quickly spot meter tampering and energy theft, reducing costs that must be passed on to the cooperative.
Members can register to view their electric energy use in hourly increments.
The project will include the installation of nearly 9,200 AMI meters and a meter data management (MDM) system that helps URE collect and analyze long-term use data to improve overall operation of our distribution grid. MDM imports and validates data, and then processes it for future billing and analysis.
URE selected National Information Solutions Cooperative (NISC) Meter Data Management system to support the company’s AMI initiatives. The groups will help URE comply with standards, conduct remote connects and manage AMI meter data. We have also implemented significant prevention methods and companywide cyber security standards to protect AMI and MDM data.
Benefits of AMI Meters
All Advanced Metering Infrastructure (AMI) meters on the system can be read remotely at any time. Because the system uses two-way communications, URE can serve members more efficiently, saving time and resources by reducing the number of trucks on the road. The system may also detect the location of power outages more rapidly.
More efficient member service and support
- Improved handling of member accounts (i.e. connects, re-connects, service transfers)
- Hourly use data for billing and use inquiries
- Online presentation of daily and hourly use to interested members
- Fewer visits to the meter location
- High-level billing and meter read accuracy
Lower operating costs
- Lower costs for meter reading
- Fewer trucks on the road
- More detailed data to plan, construct and optimize URE’s distribution system