Allentown, PA, U.S.A. — (METERING.COM) — August 27, 2007 – PPL Electric Utilities will soon expand its residential time of use pilot program, with a view to getting more information about customer usage patterns before it introduces time of use pricing to all customers in 2010.
As a first step, the utility installed smart meters in all its customers home a few years ago, and has benefited from the improved data it obtains, which includes voltage and blink count, as well as monthly consumption. Monitoring the blink count allows utility personnel to identify possible problem areas in the grid. The meters have also proved invaluable in managing outages – in particular in the wake of Hurricane Isabel in 2003, when over 500,000 customers were without power.
The pilot program presently has 300 customers enrolled, and a further 300 will join shortly. PPL provides all enrolled customers with information about their power consumption, with a view to encouraging a change in behavior and a shift to off-peak electricity use. The utility is also using the information obtained from customers to help with the design of the time of use program it intends introducing early in 2010.