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Open Public Extended Network metering

Final Report Summary - OPEN METER (Open public extended network metering)

Executive summary:

The OPEN METER project was launched on 1 January 2009. It was a project which was born aligned with the strategic energy technology (SET) plan objectives and the 20-20-20 targets, as it has been an very relevant initiative in the area of smart metering (smarter and more intelligent electricity networks are a key component in the SET plan and the achievement of the 20-20-20 targets).

The main objective of the OPEN METER project has been to specify a comprehensive set of open and public standards for advanced metering infrastructure (AMI) supporting multi commodities (electricity, gas, water and heat), based on the agreement of the most relevant stakeholders in the area.

The OPEN METER acronym summarizes the project philosophy:

1. Open: Project based on open standards and non-proprietary solutions, resulting is a set of open standards
2. Public: results to be made freely available to all stakeholders
3. Extended: goes beyond utility metering and allows for providing new energy services
4. Network: metering devices become nodes of telecom networks.

In order to achieve this main objective In order to achieve these objectives, the OPEN METER project has taken a holistic approach starting from analysing the market requirements and regulatory issues, evaluating current and emerging technologies and standards, identifying and filling knowledge gaps, testing the solutions developed and drafting and proposing the necessary standards to the relevant standardisation bodies. The project has thereby enabled the relevant industries to agree, implement and embrace a new set of international standards that have been proposed.

There have been some significant factors during the project that have conditioned the work of the project. These have been the following:

1. Publication of the Mandate M/441 by the European Community (EC) in March 2009, after the start of the project to the standardisation organisations. OPEN METER achieved to be mentioned in the mandate as a significant initiative to be considered in the framework of the mandate, which was at the end an important positioning of the project in order to meet the project objectives
2. Different standardisation initiatives started in the course of the last two and half years (during the project) which forced OPEN METER to accommodate them in the project work.
3. The start of a new smart meter coordination group (SM-CG) and smart grid coordination group (SG-CG) in Brussels, in which the project achieved also to be significantly represented.

At the moment of delivering this report (August 2011), the OPEN METER project is officially finished. At this point, we can state that the OPEN METER project has fully achieved its objectives of specifying a comprehensive set of open and public standards for AMI supporting multi commodities (electricity, gas, water and heat) and based on the agreement of the most relevant stakeholders in the area. These new standard suites have been provided, accepted and supported by all members of the consortium and they should constitute a major contribution for the removal of barriers in the large scale deployment of smart metering systems and building an AMI.

Project context and objectives

The OPEN METER project was finalised on 30 June. OPEN METER has been a European collaborative project within the Seventh Framework Programme (FP7) aiming at developing a set of coherent, open standards for smart metering/AMI. Its objectives have been fully achieved. It has been a major European undertaking uniting 19 major players, utilities, meter manufacturers, research institutes and standardisation organisations.

The factsheet of the project can be summarised as follows:

1. FP7, topic energy.2008.7.1.1. and project number 226369.
2. Estimated project duration 30 months from January 2009 to June 2011
3. Project budget EUR 4.2 million, EC funding 2.4 million
3. Consortium with 19 participants
4. Total effort committed: 339 person-months
5. Project coordinator: Iberdrola
6. Project technical coordinator: KEMA
7. Official website is 'http://www.openmeter.com'.

Project content and objectives

The project objectives as stated at the beginning of the project are as follows:

The main objective of the OPEN METER project is to specify a comprehensive set of open and public standards for AMI supporting multi commodities (electricity, gas, water and heat), based on the agreement of the most relevant stakeholders in the area.

In order to achieve this main objective, the OPEN METER planned to carry out the necessary research activities resulting in filling the existing knowledge gaps and thereby enable the relevant industries to agree, implement and embrace the new set of international standards that are specified.

The specific scientific and technical objectives of the OPEN METER project leading to the achievement of its main objective were the following:

1. To provide a selection and a common understanding for the use of available open communication standards suited to support AMI.
2. To propose recommendations for changes or extensions to existing data communication standards (suited for AMI) adopted by standardisation organisations. This should lead to a harmonised set of standards that cover AMI needs.
3. To carry out the necessary research and development activities to fill the existing knowledge gaps in order to have definitions and specifications of new communication standards and technologies for those communication channels and/or new technologies where standards don't yet exist, or do not meet AMI needs.
4. To propose conformance test procedures and test scenarios for implementations of new and existing data communication standards that support AMI and test the first system implementations based on the project results.
5. To promote awareness about the outcomes of this project among the stakeholders of AMI (namely utilities, distribution system operators, associations, standardisation bodies, end users, public national and EU administrations, regulators, developers, suppliers and testers).
6. To initiate and support the official standardisation process of the new selected and specified set of standards for AMI.

In order to achieve these objectives, the OPEN METER project has taken a holistic approach starting from analysing the market requirements and regulatory issues, evaluating current and emerging technologies and standards, identifying and filling knowledge gaps, testing the solutions developed and drafting and proposing the necessary standards to the relevant standardisation bodies.

At the end of the project, the new standard suites have been accepted and supported by all members and they should constitute a major contribution for the removal of barriers in the large scale deployment of smart metering systems and building an AMI.

For the accomplishment of the objective of the project, the project has been organised into six different work packages (WPs) as shown next:

1. WP1 Functional requirements and regulatory issues: It addressed the regulatory issues concerning AMI/smart metering is the various European countries and it identified the requirements of the various stakeholders, taking into account the conditions prevailing in the various countries of the EU.
2. WP2 Identification of knowledge and technology gaps reviewed the state of the art of the different technologies available, including protocols for wired, PLC and wireless communication media, as well as application data models and system architectures. The technologies most suitable for the purposes of AMI have been selected. WP2 also identified research needs to fill the knowledge gaps.
3. WP3 Pre normative research activities built on the results of WP1 and WP2, carrying out the necessary research and development activities, to ensure that the requirements of AMI/smart metering were met in a cost effective manner.
4. WP4 testing developed test approaches and procedures for laboratory, compliance and field tests and actual tests were carried out on newly developed system elements.
5. WP5 Specification and proposal of a standard consolidated the results of the previous WPs and provided a formal specification of the final OPEN METER proposals of standards. These results have been submitted to the relevant European and International Standardisation Organisations, namely European Committee for Standardisation (CEN), European Committee for Electrotechnical Standardisation (CENELEC) and European Telecommunications Standards Institute (ETSI).
6. WP6 dissemination carried out different activities aimed at achieving the highest possible project impact.

Project results

Main scientific and technical (SandT) results/foregrounds

Overall results

For each of the interfaces considered in OPEN meter, different technologies have been selected and proposed fort standardisation in the framework of the mandate M441.

WP results

WP1: Requirements and regulation. WP1 addressed the regulatory issues concerning AMI/smart metering in the various European countries and it identified the requirements of the various stakeholders, taking into account the conditions prevailing in the various countries of the European Union (EU).

At the end of the project the work of WP1 has reflected in two deliverables:

1. D1.1: Report on the identification and specification of functional, technical, economical and general requirements of advanced multi-metering infrastructure, including security requirements - published on 1 July 2009
2. D1.2: Report on regulatory requirements - published on 17 July 2009.

For both deliverables the final version, approved by the OPEN meter's technical committee, is available on the project website.

Conclusions of the WP work:

1. The requirements and use-cases provided in WP1 results cover business, regulatory and technical needs of an advanced multi-metering infrastructure.
2. Homogeneous requirements provided to cover the national regulations of the different member states.
3. Quality of specifications is assured by the know-how of a representative set of European utility companies and major European equipment manufacturers.
4. Requirements have led to the development and testing of real prototypes and products within the OPEN METER project.
5. The classification into minimum, advanced and optional requirements allows the development of a modular, scalable and cost-efficient solution for utilities of different sizes and countries.
6. A first reference architecture for a standardised European smart metering solution has been defined.
7. The reference architecture and list of requirements are publicly available and can be freely used.

Main achievements of the WP:

System components and interfaces, covering the needs of EU member countries

Classification of requirements: Three complementary categories have been defined:

1. Minimum: Requirements that are absolutely necessary to reach the aimed benefits %: 2. Advanced: Requirements that are of high value but might not be strictly required at all deployments.
3. Optional: Requirements that include add-on functions that provide future value-added services toward smart grids or country-specific requirements.

According to these, the OPEN METER solution will be valid for a whole range of scenarios (small vs. large utilities, strict national regulation vs. lose regulatory requirements, traditional vs. highly innovative, etc.). OPEN METER technology will be modular and scalable to offer the correct and most cost-effective choice for all scenarios. The OPEN METER solution will consist of various communication protocols and physical modulations and allow optional interfaces at the system component level.

Requirements related to the overall system - system functions

Requirements related to the overall system - general requirements. These have been classified as requirements related to: Management, security, interoperability, robustness, scalability, maintenance, performance.

Requirements related to the overall system - economic requirements

Requirements related to the field components
8. Requirements related to communications.

WP2: Assessment of technologies

Conclusions of the WP work:

1. All WP2 tasks have been successfully completed.
2. The WP2 deliverables have been provided to WP3 for further consideration.

The main achievements of the WP are related to D2.1 D2.2 and D2.3.

Description of current state of the art of technology and protocols

Achievements:

The following state of the art technologies and protocols have been identified as potential candidates for OPEN METER baseline technologies and protocols

1. 15 identified potential PLC technology candidates:
2. 14 identified potential Wireless technology candidates
3. identified potential wired technology candidates
4. 7 identified potential protocol candidates.

Assessment of potentially adequate telecommunications technologies, general requirements and assessment of technologies

Achievements:

1. Assessment categories have been defined
2. Requirements from WP1 have been mapped to the defined assessment categories
3. An assessment-tool has been implemented and state of the art technologies have been selected for further investigation in D2.3.

According to this, the finally selected technology candidates have been the following:

1. PLC for Interface MI1 - CI1, PRIME, S-FSK (IEC 61334-5-1), meters and more, PLC G3
2. Wireless for Interface MUMI1 - MI4, WPAN (IEEE 802.15.4-2006) KNX-PL
3. PLC for Interface CI1 - SI1, broadband PLC over MV.

Identification of research needs from bottom-up approach, knowledge gaps

Achievements:

The following technology gaps have been identified for the selected technologies

1. PRIME, standardisation, openness, interoperability, robustness, unknown performance, unknown power consumption, unknown whether all functional requirements can be put into practice
2. PLC G3, present standard does not specify test modes and conditions, unknown data throughput in a real world scenario, unknown whether one of the modulation schemes is superior and thus should be preferred while being automatically adapted, the mesh network approach is designed for wireless networks. No information is available how reliable this technology works taking into account the specific properties of the power line channel.
3. meters and more, specification regarding how to support multi-metering
4. S-FSK IEC 61334-5-1, building up and maintaining the S-FSK PLC network, interoperability / coexistence of PRIME and IEC 61334-5-1, data throughput.

WP3 pre-normative research activities

Conclusions of the WP work:

1. OPEN METER profiles (protocol architecture) fully defined
2. Fair amount of research and improvements
3. Checked that spec documents complied to OPEN METER functionalities and requirements
4. Proposed technologies for testing (WP4) and standardisation (WP5).

Main achievements of the WP:

The main achievements of the WP are related to deliverables D3.1 D3.2

D3.1 Design of the overall system architecture

Achievements

1. Selection of specific technology solutions for the Protocol Architecture of each of the interfaces.
2. Each interface has been analysed following the OSI layer model. These communications stacks are usually called Functional Profiles (the 'function' being here the service of the interface), Communication Profiles or just 'profiles'.

D3.2 Specification of OPEN METER OSI layers and multi-metering networking interfaces

Achievements

The work within this deliverable has been organised as follows

The main achievements within this deliverable consist on the work developed for each technology and interface, which is summarised next:

1. MI1-CI1, extending the currently available frequency range specified in EN 50065-1, assignment of frequency bands to user groups, coexistence with radio controlled clocks, EMC, coexistence of PLC technologies (PRIME, MetersandMore), conformance test modes and conditions (PRIME, PLC G3, MetersandMore), feasibility of in-system communication performance tests, remote interrogation of PHY diagnostics data, error control overlay to improve robustness in impulsive noise conditions, identification of possibly unreliable communication links and corresponding parameters, verification of adaptive modulation scheme (PRIME, PLC G3), network addressing and routing, alternative route-path to reach each node, verification of meshed network approach (PRIME, PLC G3), building up and maintaining the S-FSK PLC network
2. MI2-SI2, gaps for UMTS, gaps for GPRS
3. CI2-SI1, support for smart metering use cases
4. MUMI1-MI4, gaps for IEEE 802.15.4 gaps for M-Bus, gaps for Euridis, gaps for ZigBee
5. DLMS/COSEM, PRIME/PLC G3 and IPv6 setup classes
6. Security, study on security needs, analysis for DLMS/COSEM and MetersandMore
7. Specific gaps on PLC G3, data throughput in real-world communication scenarios
8. Specific gaps on MetersandMore, power consumption, support of multicast and broadcast transmission mode, multi utility metering, repeater function

WP4, testing

The WP work dealt with the testing of the technologies selected by OPEN meter. Its objective being to make the validation of the proposed OPEN METER architecture by testing the solution proposed in laboratory tests and field trials and to get insight in the compliance and interoperability of components of the OPEN METER AMI.

Conclusions:

The selected standards and technologies tested in OPEN METER cover the requirements defined by the OPEN METER project and thus meters and more, SFSK, PRIME and PLC G3 will be prepared as proposal for International Standardisation.

Main achievements:

The main achievements of the WP are related to D4.1 D4.2 D4.3 and D4.4:

D4.1 Report of test approach and procedures

The deliverable provides the definition of test procedures:

1. Inventory and evaluation of existing test procedures
2. Identification of requirements to be tested (based on the WP1 requirements)
3. Definition of the scope of testing
4. Matching the existing test procedures with test requirements and scope
5. Identify per test case the test category (conformance, interoperability, functional and performance)

D4.2: Set of prototypes and test facilities and D4.3 report on physical prototypes and test facilities

The deliverable provided prototypes and test facility implementation and report:

D4.4: Report on final test results and recommendations

Prototypes and devices developed in task 4.2 have been tested in a laboratory and field environment. Test cases have been used by all test partners and audits have been organised as extra level of independence at each test location for each technology.

So, D4.4 describes the final test results and recommendations. Recommendations and observations for further improvement of the standards are provided to the applicable organisations.

WP5: Standardisation

WP5 dealt with the proposal of the OPEN METER selected technologies for the path to standardisation.

Conclusions:

WP5 has fully achieved its goal by the proposal of 10 draft specifications to CENELEC in the framework of the M441 mandate. The objective was me in June 2011, when Cenelec made the Circulation of the OM proposals as draft Technical Specifications for commenting. Now, the next steps would be the review of the comments in Cenelec WG02 (September 2011) and the official Cenelec technical specifications within M/441 (February 2012.

Potential Impact:

Description of potential impacts

The OPEN METER coordination team believes that the impact of the OPEN METER project has been (and will be) extremely relevant, as it is explained in the following paragraphs:

Potential impact 1: Contribution of OPEN METER to the 20-20-20 targets

Smarter and more intelligent electricity networks (SMART GRIDS) are a key component in the SET plan and the achievement of the 20-20-20 targets. Additionally, interoperability and standardisation of technologies are a recognised key success factor for smartgrids. This is why the OPEN METER results will be key in supporting the deployment of Smart Grids and thus in contributing to the achievement of the 20-20-20 targets.

Potential Impact 2: Adoption of the proposed standards will contribute to open up the market of smart multi-metering system.

The main objective of the OPEN METER project was to define a comprehensive set of open and public standards for AMI (AMI) supporting multi commodities, based on the agreement of all the relevant European stakeholders in the area. This objective has been fully accomplished and the direct impact of achieving such an ambitious objective will set up the basis for opening up the market of smart multi-metering systems in Europe with a European standard. This is an achievable and realistic impact because the OPEN project has tackled the main identified barrier for a wide deployment of smart multi-metering systems in Europe, which is the lack of a set of standards that guarantee:

1. The filling of the existing technology gaps.
2. The interoperability of systems and devices produced by different manufacturers.
3. The overall expertise of the participants in the project (among the most relevant worldwide expertise in the several areas covered) ensures the capability of the project results to drive adequately the necessary standardisation efforts ending with the definition and proposal of an adequate set of standards valid for the actual and future needs of Smart multi metering.

Moreover, in order for this technological and standardisation effort to be effective it is evident that it is not enough to define a set of standards, but these must be widely accepted accordingly by all the relevant stakeholders. The strong and comprehensive Consortium of the OPEN METER Project ensures this extent and the prove of this is that the OPEN METER results, actually offered for standardisation to CENCELEC have been agreed upon a strongly relevant group of entities:

1. Main European Utilities that act as energy distribution operators, network operators and retailers: IBERDROLA DISTRIBUCIÓN, EDF, ENDESA, ENEL, DUTCH Utilities and RWE.
2. The European meter manufacturing industry, telecommunication solution providers and silicon solution providers: ITRON, Advanced Digital Design, Current Technologies INT., ELSTER, LANDIS+GYR, ST Microelectronics, Usyscom and ZIV Medida.
3. Leading edge specialised research and technological centres and universities: CESI RICERCA, DLMS USER Association, KEMA and University of Karlsruhe.
4. The European Committee for Electrotechnical Standardisation (CENELEC), officially responsible for standardisation in the electrotechnical field.

Besides from CENELEC, the results have also been supported by the members of the OPEN METER Panel of Users and stakeholders which includes the main standardisation and regulatory bodies: CEER, ERA, Eurelectric, Eurogas, ESMIG and IEC.

Due to the high EU-wide involvement of relevant stakeholders in this consortium, it is expected that this project will act as a door opener for all the European utilities (not involved in OPEN METER) to accept the suite of smart metering standards proposed by OPEN METER, which will ease interoperability between different manufacturers, support their current and their future smart metering needs and furthermore, will guarantee the opening up of the smart multi metering market.

Potential impact 3: Enabling active customer participation to energy markets

As stated in the SmartGrids ETP Strategic Research Agenda (SRA), 'Electronic meters and Automated Meter Management Systems (AMM) (...) represent the enabling advanced technologies to enable customer choice in the energy field of the future.'

Indeed, smart multi-metering systems are the key technology to enable active customer participation in energy markets. The OPEN METER project believes that thanks to technologies proposed by the project, the project is already a very relevant milestone in the development and deployment of smart multi-metering systems. All the activities carried out in this project (study of regulatory issues, identification of technological gaps, pre-normative research activities, testing and proposal of a standard by a consortium made up by the main European stakeholders in the field) have been important contributions towards achieving such an impact, which is now closer than what it was before the completion of the project.

Potential impact 4: Allowing EU-industry to take world leadership in smart metering

The consortium of the OPEN METER project has an international dimension, both from the technical point of view - as the expertise of the participants is among the most relevant worldwide - as from the industrial/commercialisation point of view.

Indeed, the Utilities participating in the project operate worldwide: ENEL, Iberdrola and Endesa are key market players in America as well as in Europe. Furthermore, the industrial partners sell also worldwide: Landis+GYR is the world's largest electricity meter manufacturer, ST Microelectronics is the largest European semiconductor manufacturer (and fifth largest in the world), ITRON and CURRENT technologies Int. are global companies, etc.

The work carried out by such a strong Consortium ensures that the results of the OPEN METER project have a global impact and that will allow the major EU-industry players to take world leadership.

This has already been the case in other EU defined standards, such as GSM for example, that are the living proof that initiatives such as the OPEN METER project may have an impact boosting European technology industry and stepping forward beyond competitors.

Dissemination

The dissemination tasks have been addressed right from the very beginning of the. The dissemination activities have focused on dissemination activities directed to two main groups of actors:

1. Public administrations/governments, regulators, European and National Standard Organisations.
2. Research community, industry, utilities, distribution system operators and end users in the form associations. These bodies have been given all the information generated on the new developed technologies to heighten awareness of the new standard.

In the OPEN METER project, dissemination has been of capital importance to achieve the desired project impact. For the outcome set of open and public standards to become widely accepted and used standard, the results of the OPEN METER project needed to be effectively communicated to all relevant AMI stakeholders.

Such an ambitious and vast dissemination goal has been possible to meet due to the relevance of the different members of the Consortium, who through WP6 will develop a pro-active set of dissemination activities. Each partner used its own dissemination networks to further publicise the project and thus ensure maximum impact on a regional, national and European level. The different interests of the Consortium partners (utilities, research centres, industry) and end-users (i.e. consumers) have been considered in order to focus the dissemination activities in an effective way:

1. Utilities in the consortium operate worldwide. Therefore, the adoption of the AMI standards derived from OPEN METER by these companies will have a worldwide projection, as their communication channels have also a worldwide dimension.
2. The industry partners are leaders at global level. They already commercialize metering devices and related systems worldwide. The dissemination activities of OPEN METER have taken advantage of this circumstance to communicate the results of the OPEN METER project to the main AMI end-users worldwide. These partners have included references to OPEN METER project in their commercial and technical presentations and workshops, technical papers, exhibitions, trade fairs and websites These partners also made use of their connections in National and European related Technology Platforms of Electricity Networks (SmartGrids, Futured, etc) to disseminate project activities and results.

As the ultimate goal of the OPEN METER project was to create a new AMI set of standards, the project activities and results needed to be coordinated with the main standardisation and regulatory bodies and associations. This has been achieved through the direct involvement of CENELEC in the project and also through the contributions of the other associations, standardisation and regulatory bodies to the advisory panel of the project.

Dissemination of the project has taken place through different activities:

Project website:

A dedicated project website was set up from the beginning of the OPEN METER project. The website includes an overall description of the project (objectives, structure, innovations, consortium etc.), the complete set of deliverables, as well as planned events and articles carried out by the partners of the project.

Special care was taken to inform about the different results and reports collected in the website and it has been the main channel for the dissemination of the OPEN METER results (including all the project deliverables).

The project website had two sections, a public section accessible to all visitors and a restricted section available only for the Consortium members and the project officer in the EC. The restricted section was used by the Consortium partners as a channel for information and documents interchange. Iberdrola Distribución, as project coordinator, has been in charge of the creation, updating and maintenance of the project website.

The project coordinator has taken the responsibility for the development and maintenance of the project Webpage for the duration of the project and will take the same responsibility for the period of one year after its completion to ensure maximum presence for the project, its concept, results and conclusions to as wide an audience as possible.

Research and technological development (RTD) dissemination

Each RTD partner has contributed to this activity through their regular dissemination wires such as attendance to scientific congresses, publication in specialist magazines, conferences. This has certainly helped to achieve a better dissemination degree in the research community. Some of the concrete dissemination activities carried out by the RTD partners are:

1. ERSE disseminated results of the project both at international, European and national level, participating to conferences like CIRED, CIGRE. The entity will promote technology transfer and best practices to Italian distribution utilities, as well as possible solutions to decision makers.
2. KEMA provided presentations at international conferences such as Metering International, DistribuTECH / Autovation, European Utilities Intelligent Metering, PowerGrid and national conferences in the participation countries focussing on SmartGrids and/or Smart metering.
3. UNIKA provided participation in events such as ISPLC, GLOBECOM, ICC, INFOCOM, IASTED, Metering, Billing/CRM Europe.

OPEN METER conferences and workshops

During the project, the project consortium has organised a final conference for the presentation of the OPEN METER standard. Different organisations from the most appropriate organisations and legislative bodies have taken part in these events, which have gathered the main stakeholders among the two dissemination groups identified above.

Exploitation

The OPEN METER project results represent enormous exploitation possibilities, which differ depending on the type of partner to exploit them. All different types of industrial stakeholders (utilities, meter manufacturers, telecom firms, silicon designers and manufacturers) are represented in the consortium with European worldwide operating leader companies. This fact ensures that within the consortium most partners do have a direct commercial interest to exploit the results. Moreover, the objective accomplished has been to produce a set of open and public standards that will allow other industrial partners to join later on in the use of such a European led standard for AMIs.

The specific exploitation preliminary plans for the different types of industrial companies are described below.

1. Meter manufacturers, telecom firms, silicon designers and manufacturers. It is expected that the success of this project will have a huge influence on middle- and long-term business strategy and revenue perspectives of SmartGrid solutions providers. It will also have a considerable impact on the technology and products to be developed. The open standards proposed by OPEN METER will remove the most important barrier for the adoption of AMI, which is that of not having a widely accepted industry standard with multiple technology suppliers. The project will hence accelerate the deployment of AMI system across Europe and beyond. This will create huge business opportunities. The standards for multi-metering services for electricity, gas, water will enable to better serve all such utilities that have a 'multi-utility' business model. The results of this project already offers the utilities an attractive alternative to defining their own products, by providing common standards which bears enough flexibility so that applications can be optimised according to the local requirements. The open technologies offered by the project avoid individual solutions for individual customers. This will significantly reduce the time and cost to the market. System and equipment providers will largely benefit from the open standard as they will have choice between multiple chip suppliers. A high-speed future-proof communication standard will make it easier to offer truly SmartGrid solutions that not only include AMR but also DA, AM, DSM, DR and other new services. Harmonised smart metering standards will boost the investment into smart metering. A standard solution - based on latest technology and supported by several manufacturers - is the best insurance against stranded investment.
2. Utilities. Business cases for the individual applications of AMI are difficult to justify on their own. As it can be seen from the experience with automatic meter reading (AMR) systems in the past, investments were hard to justify, as savings from replacing manual meter reads by remote reading were too limited. It is the combination of various AMI applications (such as demand side management, distribution automation, outage management, reduction of energy usage, efficient customer switching, decrease of network losses, local balancing by load and generation control) that helps to build a solid business case. But is also this combination of applications that requires a standards-based AMI so that all these applications can make use of the same infrastructure and seamlessly integrate, so the OPEN METER outcomes will clearly contribute to overcome this barrier. This will lead European worldwide operating utilities to deploy AMI systems, boosting the European sector ahead of other worldwide competitors, being the first to incorporate advanced SmartGrids technologies. In fact, during the project execution, all the utilities involved in the project have started with the first smart metering roll outs (not massive yet) which are being carried out according to the OPEN METER specifications.

List of websites:

'http://www.openmeter.com'

Contact person:

NIcolás Arcauz (Iberdrola Distribucion SA), e-mail 'nico.arcauz@iberdrola.es'.

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