Working together to achieve the benefits of an advanced metering infrastructure smart metering system with a minimal infrastructure, three Ontario communities are now ready to take significant steps into Ontario’s Smart Grid program.
Representing more than 170,000 endpoints, Cambridge and North Dunfries Hydro, Inc.; Kitchener Wilmot Hydro, Inc.; and Waterloo North Hydro, Inc. (CKW) entered the search process for an AMI vendor individually, under the government-steered London Hydro Consortium Project. The program leadership used a technical evaluation system to determine the best vendor to help utilities implement a smart metering program. The needs of CKW, along with 32 other utilities, were matched with the FlexNet system by Sensus.
A primary goal of CKW was covering Cambridge’s 300 square kilometers, Waterloo’s 673 square kilometers, and Kitchener’s 404 square kilometer with a minimal infrastructure. The FlexNet solution will service the entire area with just 11 Tower Gateway Basestations—three for Cambridge and four each for Waterloo and Kitchener.
After the three utilities individually selected the FlexNet solution, they formed the CKW alliance to streamline resources to finalize the contract and make arrangements for deployment. Officials from all three utilities report the arrangement has fostered a strong sense of teamwork for planning and deploying smart grid integration.
Another FlexNet feature for CKW is the dedicated, primary-use, FCC and IC licensed and protected communications network that delivers up to two watts of transmitting power. And, all three community representatives say that the Sensus FlexNet suite of features makes future integration of gas and water metering, and measurement and distribution on a single communications network, a realistic goal for the future.
The London Hydro Consortium Project represents 1.8 million endpoints, 1.2 million of which will be serviced by Sensus and its FlexNet system, which was selected by 35 utilities over 16 other providers. Under Ontario’s Smart Meter Implementation Program, utilities selected vendors according to an objective, technical evaluation overseen by the Province of Ontario’s Ministry of Energy.