Siemens is supplying hardware and software for a smart metering solution for the intelligent recording of electricity consumption data for Austrian power utilities Kärnten Netz and Stadtwerke Kapfenberg in the province of Styria.
According to Austria’s regulation on the introduction of smart meters, at least 95 percent of Austrian homes must be equipped with smart meters by the end of 2019.
The order comprises a complete system made up of smart meters, secure transmission technology, and IT systems for collecting and processing the measured data. It also includes interfaces to the existing infrastructure of Kärnten Netz GmbH, such as the SAP system and the online customer portal.
The data center at Kärnten Netz GmbH in Klagenfurt, Austria, will be equipped with the Siemens smart grid application platform EnergyIP for managing the data by fall of 2016. EnergyIP serves as a data hub that supports the integration of the systems involved – from the smart meter infrastructure to the utility’s company-wide ERP system – and transforms the data into relevant information for the business operations of the utility and for its customers. Starting in the fall, the first 10,000 smart meters begin operation as the initial installation of the 95,000 analog electricity meters to be replaced. An option exists for subsequent equipping of the entire network, which will comprise some 345,000 smart meters.
Data security for electricity customers and grid operators has top priority in a smart metering system. Siemens will implement the smart metering solution in partnership with Omnetric Group GmbH, a joint venture between technology service provider Accenture and Siemens. The solution will be developed in line with the requirements for total security for smart metering applications as recommended by the Advanced Meter Communication System (AMCS) of Österreichs Energie, the representative body of the Austrian energy industry. G3-PLC-certified transmission technology will also be deployed. G3-PLC is a transmission protocol for power-line communication in smart grids that is based on international standards. Data protocols that comply with the standards of the IDIS Association (Interoperable Device Interface Specification) are used to ensure that products from different meter manufacturers are interoperable and mutually exchangeable.
The electricity meters will be delivered in a consortium with the Slovenian smart metering company Iskraemeco. Siemens will contribute a new smart meter generation with G3-PLC communications technology. The meter’s design is based on experience with the Siemens AMIS technology, which has already been successfully tested on the European market. The partner company will also supply latest-generation interoperable and exchangeable smart meters with G3-PLC and peer-to-peer GPRS technology within the consortium. Siemens and its partner see the development of new G3-PLC meters, which feature interoperability and exchangeability and were designed to meet the requirements of the Austrian market, as an important factor in the success of upcoming invitations to bid for smart metering contracts from Austrian power grid operators.
Electricity data will be read automatically in the future. Electricity customers will no longer need to read the meter themselves or mail in meter cards. This will also eliminate the need to purchase expensive scanners and will reduce the time required to clarify cards that can’t be deciphered. The supplier can generate bills at shorter intervals (monthly, for example) based on actual consumption and take tariff changes into account more quickly. These bills will always be generated on the basis of actual consumption figures; customers will no longer have to make back-payments because their electricity consumption has been estimated.
An online network customer portal provides an overview of electricity consumption. On the network customer portal, Kärnten Netz GmbH will provide its customers with individualized electricity consumption data over a period of time as well as typical comparative values. This means that the customer will receive a precise overview of their electricity consumption and their attention will be drawn to unnecessary energy wasters. The precise analysis over a specific time period also makes more efficient energy consulting possible. Smart meters in homes will, for example, enable power suppliers to match their power consumption more effectively to power generation at that moment (demand response) and to better predict consumption on the basis of the more accurate data provided. The new database will also facilitate the integration of renewable energy sources and storage systems into the grid, which will benefit consumers.
Innovative smart metering solutions are part of the Siemens Division Energy Management’s product portfolio. As a product supplier, system integrator, and solution and service provider, the Division offers power supply companies and industry cost-efficient, reliable, and intelligent solutions for the transmission and distribution of electrical power. The portfolio ranges from products and systems for low-voltage and distribution networks and smart grid and energy automation solutions to high voltage transmission systems. With a presence in more than 100 countries, the Siemens Division earned approximately €11.9 billion in sales and €570 million in profit and employed just under 53,000 employees worldwide last fiscal year, which ended on September 30, 2015.