In Europe, Danish metering manufacturer Kamstrup has added network functionality to its automatic reading system for water meters in a bid to simplify installation and data collection.
The new solution for READy, an AMR system launched in 2014, aims to allow utilities or housing associations to install remote meter readers and the network’s antennas themselves.
Lars Hovgaard, product manager at Kamstrup, said: “The small whip antennas are easy to fit, using four screws. For example, they can be fitted to the end wall of a building. Then, all you have to do is provide the unit with power to establish the remote meter reading network."
The READy system is currently enabled for mobile meter reading, and the new development now enables remote meter reading.
This means that customers who already have READy installed can choose to upgrade to the network solution.
Kamstrup said in a statement that the new development ensures a cohesive solution for customers who want to start with mobile reading and then upgrade their solution in the future with one or several antennas.
Lars Hovgaard said: "Because it's possible to combine mobile and network reading, the network can be started in individual areas while mobile meter reading carries on in other areas.
"This means the network can be expanded a bit at a time, where you can start in areas that have many meters or in areas that are inaccessible if needed."
Smart meter installations in Denmark
Denmark confirmed its commitment toward smart meter installations in 2013 and Kamstrup was chosen by Danish energy giant Dong Energy as its supplier of choice for one million remotely read meters in Greater Copenhagen in March 2015.
The €239 million order is for the supply of meters, installation, reading and hosting of meter data.
And after a public tender this week, Norwegian consortium Smart Strøm Nordvest has chosen Kamstrup as the system supplier of 150,000 smart electricity meters.
The order also includes a new communication system, which can deal with meter data on an hourly basis and much more.
The roll out of the smart electricity meters will start in the power utilities’ supply area in Nordvestlandet in the middle of 2016 and continue until 2018.
Prior to the roll out, a pilot project will run in two areas, which will cover a total of 2,000 metering points.