GBs Northumbrian Water launches smart water metering rollout

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Northumbrian Water is launching rollout of its smart metering network in Essex, where the company operates as Essex & Suffolk Water.

The rollout, over five years by UK infrastructure provider Arqiva, will see implementation and monitoring of a fixed network infrastructure, delivering connectivity to up to 11,000 domestic meters. These meters will replace both meters already installed and new meters for already identified un-metered supplies.

The infrastructure includes the Sensus FlexNet communication network and Sensus meters, with installations due to begin in May when also the network is planned to go live.

The initiative is in line with Northumbrian Water’s commitment to deliver smart metering to customers within the current regulated Asset Management Plan, which runs to 2025, a statement reads. The company is targeting all domestic water meters being smart by 2035.

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Lessons learned from this initial implementation will be used to guide the subsequent smart-meter rollout over the rest of Northumbrian Water Group’s operating regions.

“This accelerator project will enable us to further understand the role smart metering can play in improving our water management capabilities and the service our customers receive,” says Gary Adams, head of smart programme at Northumbrian Water.

“We are at the very early stages of our smart programme and we’re excited to see the value this initial partnership with Arqiva will bring as we decide on our long term smart strategy and look for a scalable solution that meets our future demands.”

Alex Pannell, executive director, commercial broadcast and utilities at Arqiva, points out that this initial process should help to identify and reduce leakage alongside communicating consumer consumption behaviour.

“The reduction of water leakage and consumption are just two of the ways in which the industry can reduce its carbon footprint too. It goes without saying that the less water lost in the network, the less energy is needed to treat and supply it to the network.”

In addition to its operations in the southeast, Northumbrian Water operates under its own name in the northeast of England.

The company’s business plan for 2020-25 envisages installation of over 473,000 water meters with smart technology as part of its customer metering programme.