Texas city enhances utility operations with Nexgrid

The US city of Cuero in Texas selected smart grid solutions firm Nexgrid to enhance the distribution infrastructure of its water and electric utilities.

In a press statement, the city announced that NexGrid will integrate its smart grid solution, Multi-Mesh, with the city’s water and electric networks.

The technology is expected to enhance the operations of the city’s two departments by improving the management of network infrastructure.

The solutions firm claims that its technology will provide improved billing capabilities for the city’s utility departments.

[quote] The statement explains that the system “provides real-time outage notification, distribution management, electric and water meter reading, advanced analytical capabilities for energy usage, customer web portal, and intelligent streetlight control.” [California city proceeds with smart water meter installation].

The project is expected to be completed by October, 2016.

Utility smart meter deployment

The news follows an early July announcement by the city that it plans to complete its smart meters project by the end of July to improve the operations of its utility departments.

Kickstarted in April, 2016, the $1.9 million automated metering infrastructure (AMI) project aims to replace the city’s existing analog water and electric meters with smart models.

The project targets to install 3,400 smart electric and 3,000 smart water meters. [Texas city to enhance billing system with smart water meters].

In so doing, the city is expecting to enhance its revenue collection through the curbing of non-revenue water incurred as a result of water leakages and power theft.

The project will also allow the city to centralise its meter data processing through the creation of a data hub which will receive and process meter data sent from the meters thereby reducing operational expenses.

Wayne Berger, Cuero water and wastewater superintendent, said the city was losing huge amounts of money by checking the accuracy functionalities of the meters every two weeks. Five to 10 non-functional water meters were replaced each month.

In related news, the US city of Piqua in Ohio state also announced its plan to implement an AMI project for its water and electric departments.

The city aims to enhance operations of its departments through optimised revenue collection to be achieved from accurate water and power billing brought by smart meters.

The total cost of the project is estimated at $4.3 million.


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Nicholas Nhede is an experienced energy sector writer based in Clarion Event's Cape Town office. He has been writing for Smart Energy International’s print and online media platforms since 2015, on topics including metering, smart grids, renewable energy, the Internet of Things, distributed energy resources and smart cities. Originally from Zimbabwe, Nicholas holds a diploma in Journalism and Communication Studies. Nicholas has a passion for how technology can be used to accelerate the energy transition and combat climate change.