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Advanced Metering Infrastructure (AMI)

The AMI (Advanced Metering Infrastructure), also called Smart Metering, has indisputable benefits and advantages for Utilities, as:

  • Reduce the non-revenue and unaccounted resources (electricity, water and gas).
  • Reduce the operational costs (e.g. cost/read, connections, disconnections).
  • Increase access to the resources.
  • Increase customer satisfaction and reduce complaints.
  • Reduce the connection/disconnection costs, charges and response time.
  • Balance better the hours of resources supply.
  • Quicker identification and replacement of defective meters.
  • Save water, reduce the number of resources to produce, reduce the CO2.
  • Increase the service installed and the customers connected to the network.
  • Reduce resources frauds and thefts. 

However, achieves those benefits is challenging and requires specific expertise, experience and skills on technologies (meters, communication, software) and specific (water, gas, electricity) Utilities’ issues and business processes.

The most frequent mistake on an AMI implementation is the bottom-up approach: starting from the technology rather than the planning. Many Utilities are more concentrated on identifying the right communication technology rather than evaluate how to achieve the above-mentioned benefits in an effective, reliable and sustainable way. Evidence of this is the continuous request of Utilities of Proof Of Concept where the “concept” is just the technical part and, often, just the meter communication part, because they dislike the idea to change meter vendors. 

If the “concept to prove” is just the technical part, is cheaper book a flight and visit some other Utilities in the world that already implemented the AMI and ask them. 

If the “concept to prove” includes the business case, the impacts and the transformation of the current organization (people, processes, systems, procedures, KPI), the cost/benefit analysis, the evaluation/selection of the vendors and the service providers, the security, the regulatory, the social context, etc., this is the correct way to perform a Proof Of Concept and, as explained above, it requires specific expertise, experience and skills on technologies (meters, communication, software) and specific (water, gas, electricity) Utilities’ issues and business processes.

We are working in the Energy&Utility industry (water, gas, electricity), at an international level, from more than 15 years acquiring specific expertise, experience and skills necessary to consult and support the Utilities to plan and supervise the implementation of their AMI infrastructures taking in consideration all the above mentioned aspects and in the most cost-effective, reliable, sustainable and standard way. We are independent consultants able to dramatically simplify the work and the decisions that the Utilities’ (management, engineers, fieldworker) has to do in order to successfully implement, integrate into the current organization, and roll-out their AMI infrastructure.

Author

Andrea Desantis, 30+ years of experience in Systems Engineering and Information Security management and consulting, especially in the Energy&Utility and Telecommunications industries. Expert in AI (Machine Learning and Deep Learning) algorithms and systems applied to the Energy&Utility industry ( e.g. Predictive Maintenance), Information Security Governance, and Application Security.

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