MV Protection and Control Divisional News – “Smart” Prepayment Meters

“Smart” Prepayment Meters

2009-09-25

The contract, worth over R50m, was won by the company in competition with numerous other suppliers of smart prepayment meters. “This contract is also especially significant for us because it is the first prepayment meters contract we have won since introducing our line of imported prepayment meters into the local market,” comments Faisal Hoosen, P&C’s metering sales manager.

The prepayment meters supplied by P&C are produced by a reputable overseas manufacturer that is a leading global supplier of smart metering products.

In terms of the contract, which was awarded in April this year, the prepayment meters are required to have automatic load limiting and load disconnection capabilities. “The meters being supplied are designed to operate as smart meters, but initially they will be used purely as conventional prepayment meters without their smart metering features being utilised. Tshwane Municipality’s Electricity Department will be able to use them fully as smart meters at a later stage without the meters themselves having to be modified for that purpose,” explains Hoosen.

“To do so will require installing a back-end system, consisting of Advanced Metering Infrastructure (AMI) software, in the Electricity Department’s control centre to enable remote two-way communication between the control centre and the prepayment meters in order to execute, typically, load limiting and load disconnection functions, among others.”

A spokeman for the Tshwane Electricity Department said P&C’s bid fully met the AMI specifications of the tender. “While several other contenders also met these specifications, what made P&C different was that its price was much lower than the others,” he comments.

“To give some idea of how reasonable its price was, the next best bid on price alone was a lot higher but it didn’t qualify because it was offering outdated technology that didn’t include smart metering functionalities.”

ACTOM (Pty) Ltd is a black empowered electrical engineering company that employs over 6 000 people and has an annual order intake in excess of R5bn. It has 27 operating units, 22 production facilities and 25 distribution centres throughout South Africa.

ACTOM partners Alstom France for environmental equipment and in serving the maintenance, upgrade and retrofit market for larger boilers, as well as for railway transport activities.

ACTOM holds exclusive distribution, technology and representation rights for Areva T&D in Southern Africa and maintains management, technical and commercial links to Areva T&D business units in Europe.

ACTOM formerly traded under the name Alstom South Africa and re-branded to ACTOM in September 2009.

For further information contact Martin Kelly, ACTOM Protection & Control
PO Box 13024, Knights 1413
Tel (011) 820-5319 Fax (011) 820-5323
E-mail martin.kelly@alstom.co.za