United Cooperative Services, a rural electric cooperative in Cleburne, Texas, has begun a full deployment of Hunt Technologies’ TS2 advanced metering infrastructure (AMI) system for its 69,000 meters. UCS provides power to members in 14 counties covering a 3500 square mile service territory about 30 miles south of Fort Worth.
The utility plans to deploy the system in three phases over the next five to seven years, completing the first 5000 meters in 2006.
According to Cameron Smallwood, vice president of cooperative planning at UCS, the utility decided to install TS2 because of the added benefits a power line carrier-based AMI system brings.
“In addition to billing data, we expect the system to provide a variety of engineering information, including voltage and load data, that will help our engineers develop a more accurate picture of our distribution system,” Smallwood said.
For the past 10 years, the utility has used Hunt’s one-way TS1 system for rural residential readings and mobile RF AMR in suburban neighborhoods. Both systems will eventually be replaced by TS2 as the deployment progresses. The unique scalability of Hunt’s power line carrier systems will make transitioning from TS1 to TS2 much simpler, as both platforms can be controlled within Command Center, Hunt’s operating software platform.
The TS2 system’s Always On communication structure allows accurate, secure data transmission, while enabling advanced monitoring functions such as outage detection, voltage and load information. Remote programming of endpoints can be accomplished from the utility office for such functions as time-based billing structures and demand response. UCS also expects to take advantage of the TS2 system’s simultaneous two-way communication to operate load control devices and remote service disconnects.