Belo Horizonte, Brazil and San Jose, CA, U.S.A. — (METERING.COM) — December 18, 2012 – A 1,500 unit smart meter pilot is to be launched by Echelon and local partner ELO in Cemig’s City of the Future project in the Sete Lagoas region of Brazil’s Minas Gerais state.
Cemig is the country’s largest power company, serving over 7 million customers in 774 municipalities. Echelon is providing smart metering sub-systems to ELO, leveraging its Energy Control Networking Platform.
Cemig’s City of the Future project is designed to assess the capability and benefits of the adoption of a smart grid for future deployment. Its primary goals are to motivate customer engagement through meter installation, workshops, and monitoring and to validate new services, assess benefits, and improve operational efficiency for advanced metering infrastructure and distribution automation.
The Sete Lagoas region includes 95,000 residential, commercial, and industrial customers. Sete Lagoas was chosen because it includes a range of old and new infrastructure within high, medium and low voltage, telecommunications systems, offering a heterogeneous network, economic profile, and range of applications.
“The Brazilian market is very large and it is now prepared to make the bold steps towards modernization and creating a truly smart grid,” said Marcos Rizzo, vice president of Business Development of ELO. “We believe that basing our smart meter on the industry standard Open Smart Grid Protocol (OSGP) and our system solution on Echelon technology enables us to uniquely deliver improved quality of service, reduce peak demand and operational costs, and protect revenue for our customers.”
This past August, Brazil’s National Agency of Electrical Energy, Aneel, announced long awaited regulations regarding the deployment of smart meters throughout Brazil. These new regulations require all new meter installations to be smart meters by early 2014, but they do not require the replacement of existing legacy meters.