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InovGrid takes intelligent meters to 50 thousand users

InovGrid, a pilot project that gathers EDP, INESC Porto, Efacec, Janz and Logica, will start in October. The project entails the development of new electricity meters and, in its first stage, it should comprehend 50 thousand clients spread around the country.

According to João Peças Lopes, coordinator from INESC Porto’s Power Systems Unit, the intention is to guarantee diversity. The project can include participants with rural or urban profiles from several parts of the country. At the same time, the project is not confined to traditional homes and it can be used by entrepreneurial clients as well, for instance.

Over the last year, the InovGrid project has developed a new generation of devices that enable a higher interaction between electricity clients and suppliers.

According to INESC Porto’s press release, Portugal is about to become the first country in the world with an intelligent telemetry system (only Italy has carried out similar experiments).

The participation in InovGrid requires the installation of an Energy Box – a meter that allows the client to know “at home” the level of consumed energy up to that moment, as well as the evolutions verified in the past.

The Energy Box also allows the client or the device itself to change the tariff.

The new telemetry device also has functions to manage microgeneration units.

The InovGrid project requires a 12 million Euro investment during its first stage, which is hoped to be concluded in 2010.

InovGrid will establish an interconnection between Energy Box meters and a central client information system.

The people responsible for the project believe that this architecture can eliminate reading errors, contribute to a more efficient management and to foster a more rational energy consumption in the Portuguese homes.

Exame Informática, 16 September 2008

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