More metering data than ever is rolling in from AMR systems, and utilities are struggling to manage and benefit from it. The latest report from Chartwell, "Meter Data Management: Five Steps To Get The Most Out Of Your Meter Data Management System," outlines the challenges utilities face in maintaining increasing amounts of energy usage data delivered by automated systems and the ways energy providers can benefit from this detailed information.
The use of data warehousing (as opposed to using databases) is rising, Chartwell found in its recent annual survey of utility metering professionals. In 2004, about 24% of utilities reported they were using some sort of data warehouse. In 2005, the percentage rose to 34%. In 2004, 38% reported they where either considering, planning or piloting data warehousing projects. By 2005, that number had risen to 45%.
When to upgrade to a data warehouse, as well as many other topics are covered in the report. Interviews with industry experts and case studies round out the report.
For example, to get the most out of a meter data management system and to reap the benefits as quickly as possible, companies should have their systems designed and set up before a single meter is installed in the field. Too late? Nevermind. There are many ways to take advantage of existing systems.
The report also covers the most common problems (and solutions) companies face when trying to access the data and derive useful information from it. The last section considers the future impact of national regulations on MDM.