Today, customers expect the transmission and distribution systems to be smarter, more flexible, efficient and affordable. They want the level of reliable service they often receive from popular consumer-facing brands. As we invest to modernize and strengthen the grid to meet these needs for today and the future, we are creating a more sophisticated electric ecosystem that provides universal access to low-carbon, cost-effective power and energy solutions.
AEP continues to invest in modernizing and strengthening the grid by deploying AMI meters which can help proactively identify issues and offer customers energy saving services.
AEP’s operating companies began deploying two-way communicating AMI meters and supporting infrastructure as early as 2008. Since then, we have continued to deploy these foundational smart grid assets based on an increasingly strong customer business case and subsequent regulatory approval in some jurisdictions. With 1.9 million AMI meters currently deployed and nearly 1 million planned over the next several years, AEP’s operating companies will continue to migrate toward full deployment in the long term. Future deployment will likely occur in smaller increments as AMI is evolving to an industry-standard technology, replacing older infrastructure.
The fundamental value in having AMI infrastructure is the robust data set that is captured (as often as every 15 minutes) across many dimensions including energy usage, voltage and temperature. This enables advanced analytics to proactively identify issues and offer customers programs and services that are unique to their usage patterns. We have achieved several successes by leveraging AMI data. These include:
- Proactive identification of temperature anomalies and/or unsafe conditions
- Transformer failure prediction
- Multiple methods to proactively identify and address customer theft of service
- More timely identification, communication, and restoration of customer outages
- Increased customer education and control via robust data availability through web portals and mobile applications
- Enablement of energy efficiency and/or other approaches to help customers manage their specific energy usage