Echelon Corporation (Nasdaq: ELON), a global leader in energy control networking for the smart grid, and ELO Sistemas Eletronicos, one of the largest meter manufacturers in Brazil, announced that ELO is completing the deployment of a 3,400 unit pilot – the Parintins City Project – with Eletrobras, one of the largest utilities in Latin America, serving over 3 million customers. ELO's solution consists of a dual mode smart meter that communicates over power line (PL) or by radio frequency (RF) through Echelon's exclusive Multipurpose Expansion Port (MEP) feature. Echelon is providing smart sensor and metering sub-systems to ELO, leveraging its proven Energy Control Networking Platform.
This project is part of an innovative plan aimed at improving the everyday lives of the customers served by Eletrobras in the Amazon region. Installed smart meters will act as sensors in the distribution network, allowing the detection and immediate intervention in the event of a power failure or line tampering. Eletrobras will monitor the data from the smart meters, such as time consumption and cost per kWh at different times of day, and can change rates throughout the day, encouraging consumption during off-peak demand. By the end of 2013, ELO will deploy another 12,000 smart meters as part of this project.
"We are excited to provide ELO with the solution that enables a grid modernization path for Eletrobras," said Michael Anderson, senior vice president, Worldwide Markets, at Echelon. "Delivering safe, reliable energy is the main mission of the smart grid, and utilities like Eletrobras with grid modernization projects lead the way for other Brazilian cities and towns."
The project is located in Parintins, a city on an island in an isolated portion of the grid, which will allow monitoring of system performance from generation to distribution and provide customer with status to this new technology. To integrate the entire area, meters with both PL and RF communications were required to reach all customers. Another technical requirement was to secure the information and sense any tampering, as this territory has one of the highest rates of non-technical losses, largely because enforcement is difficult. To date, 3,400 meters have been installed and the project is meeting its goals of reduced technical and commercial losses, increased security and improved quality of service.
"Meeting or surpassing the Eletrobras Parintins project goals for reduced losses and improved quality of service has been extremely satisfying," said Marcos Rizzo, vice president of Business Development of ELO. "Parintins will be the first Brazilian city with 100% of the customers with a smart meter installed. Echelon and ELO are able to offer the Parintins project unmatched flexibility and time to market advantages based on the industry standard Open Smart Grid Protocol (OSGP)."