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July 16, 2010

CPWS Selects Elster for Multi-Utility Smart Grid Project



Columbia Power and Water Systems, a Columbia, Tenn.-based electricity, water and broadband utility, announced it has selected Elster for its multi-utility Smart Grid project.
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CPWS selected EnergyAxis from four potential Smart Grid vendors.

Officials with Elster said that CPWS will deploy the company's EnergyAxis Smart Grid solution to create an advanced metering infrastructure system that will improve customer service, meter reading and outage management.

According to company officials, the Elster AMI deployment is the first phase of the CPWS Smart Grid initiative, scheduled to be rolled out over the next five years.

CPWS will deploy approximately 25,000 Elster smart electricity meters and 25,000 smart water meters.


Company officials said that EnergyAxis will enable CPWS to enhance its delivery of electricity and water services by increasing meter accuracy, providing additional load data for engineering analysis, reducing water loss, improving responsiveness for restoring unplanned outages and adding customer service offerings such as demand response.

"With its proven track record of successful Smart Grid deployments and the outstanding reliability and performance we saw with the EnergyAxis solution during our testing process, we believe we have found the best Smart Grid solution to bring maximum benefit to CPWS and its customers," said Jim Clark, general manager of CPWS, in a statement.

The EnergyAxis Smart Grid solution, company officials said, will provide bi-directional communication between the smart meters and the CPWS home office via the utility's existing wide area network.
Backhaul communications will be conducted over the CPWS broadband fiber optic network or over cellular wireless networks for more remote meter locations.

The EnergyAxis solution will integrate with the existing WAN, enabling CPWS to perform remote meter readings, improve distribution automation and better manage outages.

"Every Smart Grid deployment entails a certain level of customization and the CPWS project was no different, requiring us to integrate with the utility's existing infrastructure," said Mark Munday, president and CEO of Elster Solutions.

Munday said that the EnergyAxis Smart Grid solution can be deployed in single or multi-utility systems to help organizations like CPWS upgrade their water and electricity infrastructure capabilities, and improve customer service and natural resource conservation.
Elster is one of the world's largest electricity, gas and water measurement and control providers.
 

Anil Sharma is a contributing editor for TMCnet. To read more of Anil's articles, please visit his columnist page.

Edited by Marisa Torrieri
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