T&D World Magazine
Huntsville Utilities Monitors Energy with Conservation Voltage Reduction

Huntsville Utilities Monitors Energy with Conservation Voltage Reduction

Real-time voltage data accurate to one-tenth of a volt

As the summer heat forces air conditioning units into overdrive, our nation’s power grids are stressed to keep up with demand. With the help of the Sensus Conservation Voltage Reduction (CVR) solution, Huntsville Utilities is meeting customer demand without sacrificing service.

“ANSI standards require voltage between 114 and 126 volts. With the Sensus system, we were able to get data every five minutes with accuracy down to the tenth of a volt,” said Jamie Patterson, AMI/DR engineer for Huntsville Utilities. “This monitoring enabled us to right-size voltage and conserve energy while meeting customer demand.”

Each day, there are times of peak demand that strain the grid and often require utilities to purchase power from outside sources. With CVR, utilities can reduce voltage and save energy during those peak times. In the case of Huntsville, their Demand Voltage Reduction (DVR) program decreased the amount of peak electricity the utility has to purchase from the Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA).

Using the Sensus Voltage Insight software, FlexNet communication network and iConA Generation 4 meter, Huntsville was able to prove that it can reduce voltage without compromising service to customers—data that enabled the utility to receive a grant for its DVR program from TVA. In addition to saving energy and money, the application reduces wear-and-tear on Huntsville’s electric infrastructure.

The Sensus CVR application monitors and controls voltage using the Sensus iConA Generation 4 electric meter or the new Sensus Stratus residential meter and FlexNet. The Sensus FlexNet system is a long-range radio network that provides a scalable and reliable communications infrastructure that enables smart cities. The range of the point-to-multi-point network reduces the number of access points required to capture and transmit data. Public service providers using the FlexNet communication network can support multiple applications that increase operational efficiency and customer engagement. Sensus’ large investment in licensed spectrum ensures that customers have the bandwidth required to support future data requirements.

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