BANGALORE, INDIA: IEEE Standards Association (IEEE-SA), a globally recognized standards setting body within IEEE, officially introduced two new standards IEEE 1701 and IEEE 1702, to create a multi source plug and play communications environment for implementation of diverse smart metering devices, for the first time in India.
While deployment of smart meters and advanced metering infrastructure (AMI) has been recognized as an important steps towards Smart Grid implementation and enhancing power efficiency in India, the issue of interoperability has significantly impacted the pace and quantity of smart meter roll out. With the introduction of the two standards, IEEE-SA aims to help address this basic issue.
The IEEE 1701 and IEEE 1702 standards provide lower layer communication protocols for LAN/WAN ports and telephone ports, respectively, used in conjunction with utility metering. Both standards solve the problems associated with single source systems and with multi-source systems based upon proprietary communications protocols. Electric, water, and gas utilities and corresponding vendors can realize cost savings which ultimately shall benefit the client consumers of the utilities.
Smart meters will help provide automated real time meter reading and billing information, two way communications between the utility and the smart meter, delivery of voltage and power quality data to the utility and automated alarms to alert the utilities to operational issues and attempted power theft. Energy industry, regulators and law makers have been discussing interoperability of smart metering systems in India and the need to introduce standards to help construct a secure communications infrastructure for advanced metering.
William Ash, Strategic Program Manager, IEEE Standards Association commented: “The IEEE 1701 and IEEE 1702 standards is important to the utility industry because it will enable for true interoperability and will help accelerate Smart Meter deployment in India. Interchangeable meters promote faster and wider deployments of smart Meters and supporting services. Utilities are hesitant to ask one smart meter manufacturer to supply all of its needs and typically rely on more than one."
Srikanth Chandrasekaran, Chair - India SIG, IEEE-SA, explained: “Given the current problems facing Indian utilities in terms of revenue collection and the potential for rebalancing peak load, there is considerable incentive for adoption of Smart meters on mass scale. The government’s current Restructured Accelerated Power Development and Reform Program is effectively a forerunner for a Smart Metering program, given that it includes the enablement of power systems via introduction of ICT (Information and Communication Technology), with the primary goal of mitigating losses associated with energy theft and operating inefficiencies.
“Adoption of the IEEE 1701 and IEEE 1702 standards by utilities will play a key role in determining the attributes and operating characteristics of advanced metering infrastructure in the country.”