CenterPoint Energy completes AMI field testing


Tom Standish,
Group President for
Regulated Operations,
CenterPoint Energy
Houston, TX, U.S.A. — (METERING.COM) — November 9, 2007 – CenterPoint Energy, the nation’s third largest combined electricity and gas delivery company in terms of number of customers, has successfully completed a field test of Itron’s OpenWay™ advanced metering technology. The utility deployed approximately 10,000 new OpenWay CENTRON® solid-state meters in its service territory this past spring and tested the system’s performance and reliability against a variety of benchmarks and functionality requirements in an operational environment.

“We evaluated the OpenWay system in a real-world environment and we’re pleased with the system’s performance,” said Tom Standish, group president for regulated operations at CenterPoint Energy. “This test was an important step toward a potential larger deployment of this technology in our service territory.”

OpenWay by Itron is an adaptable, open-architecture AMI solution that features full-two way communication to every meter and is designed to meet the broad set of advanced metering, communication and control technology requirements that utilities will face in the years to come.

In its field test of OpenWay, CenterPoint Energy focused on several capabilities and requirements central to the utility’s advanced metering evaluation. Those requirements included:

  • The ability to deliver 15-minute interval data and on-demand reads from every meter
  • The ability to maintain very high overall system read reliability
  • Load-limiting remote disconnect and reconnect functionality for each meter
  • The ability to remotely download new firmware to each meter
  • ZigBee® home area network communication with other meters, smart thermostats and load control devices to support energy efficiency and demand response applications.

Philip Mezey, Itron senior vice president and COO, said the test results at CenterPoint Energy provide strong affirmation that Itron’s OpenWay technology is built to meet the requirements of the most demanding AMI business cases. “The AMI system, with its ability to provide advanced measurement, communication and control capability to every customer premise, is a key component to build the intelligent grid,” said Mezey. “We architected OpenWay with our customers’ requirements for the future clearly in mind. With open standards, two-way communication to each meter, built-in home area communication via Zigbee, and advanced smart-grid functionality such as remote disconnect and outage detection, OpenWay is the most innovative and advanced AMI offering on the market.”