National Grid has completed installation of Itron's OpenWay smart grid platform as part of the next phase of its Smart Energy Solutions Program in Worcester, Massachusetts, US.

OpenWay meter

The platform, which features an advanced Cisco-powered IPv6 network, enables National Grid to increase electric service reliability, improve response to power outages and empower customers to save energy.

Specifically, the smart grid solution is expected to enable consumer engagement programs that give the utility’s customers better insights into their energy use and costs.

National Grid Smart Energy Solutions program director William Jones said the company is working with Itron to build a smarter, more resilient electric network.

"Under our Smart Energy Solutions Program, we look forward to providing our customers with improved reliability and a new level of choice and control over their energy use," Jones added.

Itron electricity business line president Mark de Vere White said, "As a leading technology and services company, Itron has the knowledge and experience to help utilities like National Grid make the most of their smart grid investments – all with the goal of being more resourceful with energy and water."

The solution is primarily used by National Grid to provide two-way communication at the customer meter to deliver detailed energy consumption information at regular intervals, which will enable outage identification and demand response capabilities that will reduce customer energy costs and minimize the impact of power interruptions.

In addition, the technology is expected to identify which customers are affected during storms or emergency conditions, thereby improving restoration times.

National Grid is also planning to offer time-based pricing plans to help customers achieve even more energy savings in late 2014.

Photo: Courtesy of Dwight Burdette.