T&D World Magazine

Ecologic Meter Data Management System Delivers with CIM-Compliant Interfaces

Ecologic Analytics is among the first MDMS providers to deliver a solution with native interfaces based on International Electrotechnical Commission’s (IEC) 61968 Part 9. The interfaces support the National Institute of Standards and Technology’s (NIST) Smart Grid interoperability requirements and the U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE) Smart Grid Investment Grant (SGIG) obligations. By taking a strong Common Information Model (CIM)-based approach for its native interface design, the Ecologic MDMS is directly aligned with the Smart Grid requirements established by NIST and the DOE.

“NIST issued a broad-based plan this fall to bring end-to-end interoperability to the Smart Grid through the use of standards,” said David Hubbard, co-founder and chief technology officer of Ecologic Analytics. “By proactively supporting these standards within our MDMS, our customers receive not only greater end-to-end interoperability and streamlined options for immediate and future integration, but also off-the-shelf compliance with Smart Grid Investment Grant programs.”

The Ecologic MDMS CIM-based interfaces adhere to the recently ratified IEC 61968-9 standard, which is responsible for two distinct areas of application – meter reading and meter control. As one of the most active MDMS providers in the IEC working group, Ecologic Analytics is assisting the group in defining similar Smart Grid standards for the Home Area Network (HAN) and back office system interoperability.

The following example illustrates the functionality provided by the native MDMS IEC Part 9 interfaces. Using only the meter identifier, the utility back office system initiates an IEC-Part 9-compliant call to the Ecologic MDMS and remotely performs a demand reset, a remote disconnect and/or other remote operations. The Ecologic MDMS then fulfills the request seamlessly, without the utility back office system needing to understand the identity of or any of the nuances of the AMI system on which the Smart Meter of interest resides. As a highly scalable operational hub and point of adjudication for the enterprise, the Ecologic MDMS brokers these commands and implements the business logic to complete these requests in near real time. Confirmation of success and validation of results or notification of error conditions are then returned to the utility back office system, again using IEC-Part 9-compliant messages.

The new interfaces within the Ecologic MDMS also enable seamless operation with Home Area Network (HAN) devices. Using the meter identifier or service point identifier to which the HAN device is associated, the MDMS will route the proper commands to provision and de-provision in-home devices and to send messages, pricing information or demand response and load control commands to the HAN devices. In addition, the Ecologic MDMS provides robust support for the ZigBee Smart Energy Profile standard being deployed by many personal energy management providers today, enabling consumers to participate in the pricing events and utilities to reduce peak loads and preserve the environment through increased efficiency and execution of energy conservation programs.

According to the DOE, increasing the efficiency of the power grid by just 5 percent would be the same as permanently removing the fuel and green house emissions from 53 million cars.

Enabling greater efficiency with the standards-based Ecologic MDMS offers many tangible benefits for Ecologic Analytics’ customers and the consumers served within their service territories. A few examples are:

  • Standardized two-way communications between Smart Meter/HAN devices and utility back office systems, providing near-real-time analysis on consumers’ power consumption
  • Support for a wide-variety of energy conservation and peak load limiting initiatives through IEC CIM-based messages containing current price information, demand response program and load control information to customers in near real time
  • Optimized Smart Grid operations that quickly detect power losses, smartly scope the outage size and location, aid in restoring power and verifying restoration activity quickly and efficiently
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