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Smart infrastructure firm Itron is calling for hardware and software vendors to submit their products and solutions to the Itron Smart Community Challenge.

The challenge follows Itron’s 2019 Smart City Challenge, which sought IoT solutions for challenges in London and Glasgow.

The aim of the challenge is to develop solutions that would help to tackle challenges facing utilities and the communities they serve.

The application period is now open and will close on March 31, 2020. To learn more about the challenges, sign up for more information and submit your application, visit www.itron.com/challenge.

Participants are invited to join this virtual IoT accelerator programme, which utilises Itron’s open platform to create breakthrough solutions for challenges designed by participating utilities:

  • Electric vehicle charging as grid resources sponsored by Avista.
    For this challenge, Avista is seeking solutions that will enable communities to turn electric vehicle service equipment (EVSE) into grid resources through grid optimization, time-based consumption and load management, while improving the customer experience. Example solutions could support communication and control of charging events between vehicles and the grid or, alternatively, applications that enable consumers to opt-into load management programs.
  • The resiliency challenge sponsored by Liberty Utilities.
    To help Liberty Utilities endure prolonged outage events caused by severe weather events, this challenge invites solutions that enable utilities and communities to minimise service disruptions for critical infrastructure assets located in a designated emergency safe zone. For example, a solution could provide back-up power and communications for critical services in an emergency safe zone. In this safe zone, critical infrastructure such as street lighting and traffic signalling could operate using energy storage to ensure public safety.

Utilising Itron’s standards-based developer tools, technology providers are invited to integrate their solutions with Itron’s IoT platform to create solutions for these challenges. A select group of qualified participants will receive complimentary development kits and technical support from Itron to prototype their solutions. By taking advantage of Itron’s open platform and partner programme, successful solutions will be able to utilize Itron’s proven technology to unlock commercial opportunities. The winners of each challenge will be able to fast-track development of their solution, participate in co-marketing opportunities with Itron, and tap into Itron’s global salesforce to access more than 8,000 utilities and cities worldwide

“The Itron Smart City Challenge inspired breakthrough solutions for two major cities in Europe, and we are thrilled to bring this innovative program to North America with the Smart Community Challenge. By collaborating with Avista and Liberty Utilities, we identified two key challenges facing communities and we look forward to seeing developers and solution providers build solutions that address these obstacles with our open, standards-based IoT platform, developer tools and support.”
- Itai Dadon, director of smart cities and IoT at Itron

“Electric transportation enables a better energy future that provides major economic and environmental benefits to our customers and the communities we serve. Through our participation in Itron’s Smart Community Challenge, we look forward to seeing solutions that will transform electric vehicles into a powerful distributed energy resource to enhance community sustainability and improve the overall experience for electric vehicle owners in our community.” - Rendall Farley, Electric Transportation manager, Avista

“We place tremendous importance on the safety of our employees and the public. With the Itron Smart Community Challenge, innovators can collaborate with us in ensuring public safety by developing breakthrough solutions to minimize interruption of critical services and mitigate the impact of severe weather events. We are thrilled to be a sponsor of this challenge and look forward to the process.” - Brent Baker, vice president – National Customer Experience Operations, Liberty Utilities