The Energy InSightSM system from CenterPoint Energy is made of two parts: smart meters and the intelligent Grid
Smart meters will be installed for all of our two million customers by the end of next year. They feature two way communication to send and receive information to and from consumers and CenterPoint Energy. Benefits include:
· Remote meter reading - CenterPoint Energy can read smart meters remotely, which means more privacy for residents, fewer estimated meter reads, and easy on-demand reads.
· Remote service connection/disconnection - Faster service, lower cost to consumers to move or switch retail electric providers.
· Automated outage notification - Smart meters will automatically notify CenterPoint Energy about power outages to help us restore power more quickly.
· New products and services - Retail Electric Providers, who sell electricity, can now offer new services such as pre-paid service, “time-of-use” rates, or energy analysis tools.
· Home Area Networks (HAN) – Smart meters can interact with ZigBee -compatible HAN devices such as thermostats or other electric appliances so consumers can better manage their electricity use.
The Intelligent Grid (phase one to be completed in 2013) is a self -healing smart grid that will use smart meters, power line sensors, remote switches, and other automated equipment to improve power reliability and restoration in greater Houston.
· Most breaks in a power line – a tree limb falling, for example – will be detected, and power will be re-routed around the break or fault and service continues, virtually uninterrupted, while CenterPoint Energy personnel are dispatched to the repair site.
· During major storms/hurricanes, technology will allow the grid to “self-heal” to restore power to as much of the system as possible.
· In many cases, the time to restore power through the smart grid in CenterPoint Energy’s service area will be a fraction of the current averages.