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Meters evolve to bring the smart grid home

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re: Meters evolve to bring the smart grid home
B.V.Rao   7/9/2011 6:28:54 AM
Smart Meters appropriately employed in distribution systems of power deficit, developing countries where certain sections of people are given power at a subsidy or no cost will greatly help in managing the available resources. While I concur with the view above, time of day metering and tariff greatly helps the utilities to optimally utilize the generating resources. One can always set a timer for washing machine or dryer to use power in lower tariff time zone. Dynamic billing like the tariff changes by minute is meaningless and would create only confusion for user and business for IT companies and semiconductor companies.

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re: Meters evolve to bring the smart grid home
cdhmanning   7/5/2011 8:15:52 PM
I fully agree with you that smart metering is unlikely to change electricity consumption habits. If you want to watch TV you want to do it when the popcorn is hot. You won't get up at 3 am to get better rates. But the people pushing Smart Grid etc in Congress are not bothered with reality. If they get pressured enough, and the voters start saying they want it, then Smart Grid will be forced onto the populace whether it makes sense or not. If that happens there is going to be a huge market that many people want to profit from.

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re: Meters evolve to bring the smart grid home
mac_droz   7/5/2011 8:59:41 AM
"Smart grid" is a buzz word of the current decade. It is used by politicians and all the sales people types. The only trouble is that it means nothing... There's no single definition of what the smart grid is... We have a feeling that it has something to do with renewables, dynamic tariffs and so on but how do you actually imagine that? I am very afraid that in our pursuit of getting thing working better we actually can make it worse. Just imagine having one of those "smart" meters (why the ...beep... is everything called smart these days?), right? Your tariffs are changing during the day, whenever the sun goes up and wind starts blowing. Now you as a concerned citizen (concerned with your bill) spend half of the day looking at your meter and waiting for price to go down to start your washing. How will you get billed? Will it be something like: 10.3 kWh @ $0.15 (from 01/01/2020 10:15 to 10:17) 1.77 kWh @ $0.147 (from 01/01/2020 10:17 to 10:21) .... and so on, the list goes through 200 pages.... And what if you say "I do not agree! I remember looking at the meter from 10:17 and it was showing $0.13!!!". Will there be any log available on the net? This thing becomes so complicated that NOBODY will ever be able to use it. Maybe it is actually the point. You'll just stop controlling your bill (because you'll never understand it) or maybe you'll hire a company to put an automation in place that would "lower your bill". From the history we know that very often when we start complicating things the outcome is quite different. Why not have one tariff for all and just allow people to generate some amount of energy that might offset their use? One meter, on tariff. If your roof is filled with solar panels and you get a lot of sun, the meter spins the other way. Simple, efficient, understandable for all. The only problem is that it may not be so profitable for the semiconductor companies and all the new industry that might be build around it.

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