Meter reading: Texas utility deploys joint Itron-Tantalus solution


US municipal utility Garland Power & Light has deployed a new joint Itron-Tantalus solution in a bid to automate the collection of electric and water encoder receiver transmitter (ERT) readings.

Itron announced this week that its advanced meters are now fitted with smart grid company Tantalus’ TRUView GIS, which allows utilities to migrate from a one-way drive-by system to real-time reading as part of a two-way advanced metering infrastructure solution.

Itron said in a statement that the solution aim to allow multi-commodity utilities to preserve existing investments in electric, water, and gas ERT technology.

The Texas-based not-for-profit utility Garland Power & Light (GP&L) is one of the first to adopt the combined metering solution.

The collaboration combines Itron’s Sentinel and Centron electricity meters as well as its gas and water ERT modules together with Tantalus’ TUNet platform to address advanced metering, demand management, and distribution automation.

Billing software integration

The utility has integrated the application with existing hardware and software such as Itron’s MVRS for billing.

As a result, GP&L has been able to maintain existing billing interfaces and processes, but with enhanced capabilities which has led to operational savings through decreased truck rolls, verified and time stamped remote disconnects/reconnects for electricity, and more accurate billing.

Solution development

Commenting on the deployment, Mike Rader, customer service manager for the City of Garland, said: “We have been extremely pleased with the Itron and Tantalus partnership approach to this project from its inception.

“We feel that we have been given a voice in the development of a solution that effectively meets the challenges of balancing functionality, investment, and future planning, which are common considerations for public power utilities across the board.”

The Itron-Tantalus applications for automated metering, load management, and power quality management are available throughout North America, Central America and the Caribbean.

Itron estimates the size of the municipal and cooperative markets to include nearly 40 million electric and 20 million gas and water meters.