Landis+Gyr has signed an agreement with Colorado Springs Utilities to start an advanced load management program to reduce load on distribution system assets during peak power consumption.

As part of the agreement, the company will deploy 1,900 smart thermostats and software applications to enable load shedding on specific feeder circuits to safeguard transformers and other distribution equipment, while maintaining reliable electric service, over the next four years.

Equipped with Gridstream communications technology, the smart thermostats utilize the company’s existing smart grid network to communicate with sophisticated load management software.

The software will use accurate load information to determine the number of customer thermostats to control during peak power events.

Colorado Springs Utilities Smart Grid project manager Angie Thoma said the smart thermostat option provides greater flexibility and extends the value of the company’s existing smart grid infrastructure beyond meter reading.

"This is a unique application of load management technology because our main objective is managing our distribution infrastructure during peak, as opposed to dealing with supply constraints," Thoma added.

Landis+Gyr Americas executive vice president Prasanna Venkatesan said, "This is an excellent example of the added benefits utilities are realizing from advanced metering infrastructure."

The consumers participating in the program will have access to a mobile device application to monitor thermostat settings and make decisions about participation during a peak event.