An agreement between Southern Co. and Sensus Metering Systems lays the foundation to provide 4.3 million Southern Co. customers with next generation electricity service offerings. Over the next five years, Southern Co.subsidiaries will deploy Sensus' FlexNet AMI (advanced metering infrastructure) solution when they launch their new Smart Meter programs to customers across the Southern Co. footprint. The FlexNet system will read meters remotely and provide new data that will lead to electricity pricing options for Southern Co. customers.
Southern Co. played an integral role in the development of Sensus' FlexNet AMI solution by providing customer input and trials on both the Sensus iCon meter and the FlexNet communications technology that powers the system. The Southern Co. decision came after successful large-scale trial deployments of FlexNet involving more than 100,000 customer locations covering over 3000 square miles at Alabama Power and Georgia Power.
"Before the term 'AMI' was coined, Southern Company envisioned very specific and advanced features for their demanding topography and business case needs. Sensus created that system by following their blueprint," said Peter Mainz, Sensus' chief operating officer. "We worked diligently together until our system, meters and AMI communications technology, could provide a single solution for Southern's varied and demanding topology."
For instance, Southern Co. was one of the first utilities to require features such as two-way communication capability that places pricing plans directly into the customers' hands. Southern also required all ANSI standards, remote firmware upgrades and remote connect/disconnect features and support of Demand Response programs - items that are all part of the FlexNet AMI package.
"We plan to use the Sensus FlexNet system to launch our new Smart Meter program for our customers across the Southeast," said Mike Garrett, president and chief executive officer of Southern Co. subsidiary Georgia Power, who serves as co-executive sponsor of the system wide deployment of the Smart Meter program.