Conference: Metering, Billing/CIS America 2007
Location: San Antonio, TX, USA
Presenter: Renato Alvarenga
Abstract: Presented by Renato Alvarenga at Metering, Billing/CIS America 2007

Privatized in 1996, Ampla could only reduce 1.7 points of it total losses after investments of R$ 500 million between 1997 and 2003.

Since the traditional methods to reduce energy theft did not work in Rio de Janeiro, Ampla developed a new system to fight energy theft. The Ampla Network presents a new distribution grid layout (LT network positioned on the same bean where the MT network lies). Both grids are located ~10 meters above the ground level, making it very hard to connect illegally to the network. In addition, electronic meters, installed at the end of the same beam that supports the cables, make it impossible to fraud the meters. Those meters are remotely operated (reading, connections and disconnections).

Ampla intends to reach ~700.000 customers with its Ampla Network. Those customers represent ~30% of the customer base and more than 50% of Ampla’s losses. So far, almost 220.000 customers are being billed via the Ampla Network. As a result, the total losses of Ampla have fallen from 23.64% (2003) to 20.37% (2006).

Besides its main purpose (theft reduction), the Ampla Network offers other benefits such as prepaid energy, tools for energetic efficiency, access to daily consumption in kWh and R$ (e.g., via toll-free phone number, internet, etc.), and high-quality grid (less interruptions that are solved more quickly).