Echelon will sell Duke Energy 57,500 advanced meters--Echelon’s first U.S. utility contract. The company is one of Duke’s strategic partners in the development of Duke’s “Utility of the Future” and is committed to providing Duke solutions that continuously support open standards and evolving networks and technologies.
This announcement follows Echelon’s Networked Energy Services (NES) overseas installation of the world’s first smart metering infrastructures in Italy in the early part of this century. Today, more than 27 million meters in Italy are networked using the company’s power line communications and data concentrator products. Additional NES customers include utilities around the globe in Australia, Austria, Denmark, the Netherlands, Russia and Sweden. Echelon has shipped nearly one million NES meters to utilities throughout the world. All of these meters are based on the same core networking and metering standards being used by Duke Energy.
Bloomberg News cited how smart meters cut power bills by 10 percent in a study of 112 households released Jan. 9 by the U.S. Energy Department. According to the researchers, widespread adoption of the systems would save $70 billion in costs for new power plants and lines over 20 years. Meanwhile, an analyst at ABI Research in Scottsdale, Arizona said that as many as 45 million smart meters may be ordered by 2011. In addition, he stated that the number of smart meters installed in North America rose 26 percent last year to 15.8 million. By 2013, this will surge to 61 million, according to the research firm.