Conference: Metering Central America & Caribbean 2008
Location: Bogota, Colombia
Presenter: Bruno Agra Kleinau
Abstract: Presented by Bruno Agra Kleinau at Metering Central America & Caribbean 2008

Celpe is a Brazilian utility that lies on the northeast of the country in a very touristy place, it was installed about two thousand smart meters intended to trace different ways to identify technical and non-technical energy losses, allowing electrical energy parameters supervising and remote disconnection/reconnection, providing to reduce lost of resources, beyond to guarantee security on the transferring data along the integrated applications.

The Power-Line Carrier was proposed in order to use the communicating through the own utility’s distribution energy trunk; avoiding auxiliary communication bus bar and additional implementation problems as well as excessive communication costs once the PLC signal should be carried from the meters until the substation, being available in the utility’s intranet.

Dealing with the system’s potential features like detection of tampering with meter and/or service, comparison metering (transformer vs. sum from meters), use of remote disconnection/reconnection, monitoring of load balance in the transformer, daily information on hourly consumption and monitoring of service quality (power factor, voltage levels and outages), Celpe was able to carried-out: asset optimization (technical losses reduction) applying symmetry of phase-loads on a 3-phase transformer and distribution transformers relocation, as well as, revenue assurance through remote disconnection/reconnection and after decide to start a pre-payment beta pilot, beyond to allow customer satisfaction providing reduction in time to recover from outages and fixed problems leading to under voltage.

The most significant results were the reduction of € 345,00/month in measurable technical losses on a transformer distribution network with 59 customers, due to a better load distribution among its 3 phases (based on hourly consumption information from the meters and from the balance meter used for measuring the transformer), tampering attempts are now easily pinpointed and law enforcement is easier and less expensive, on the other hand reduced time to pay for bad payers (especially because of tampering detection).