Pulaski Electric System, the municipally-owned electric power provider for Giles County, serving nearly 15,000 customers, has received the 2010 Award of Excellence for Innovation from Metering International for a pioneering and innovative Smart Grid project that has brought both economic and operational benefits to a Tennessee municipality.
Announced at the Metering, Billing/MDM conference in San Diego, the award recognized Pulaski’s achievement in successfully applying new technology that resulted in positive financial, operational and customer service impacts to the utility and to the community at large.
The award-winning company is one of the first municipal utilities in the country to own and operate a Fiber-to-the-Home network and use it to provide both triple-play consumer media services and a full range of Smart Grid applications.
The deployment of a Tantalus Utility Network in 2008 helps Pulaski to use the high-speed FTTH network within the city, and wireless 220 MHz RF in rural areas where broadband is not currently available.
PES, through this, is allowed to drive additional value from its fiber system, implement a redundant data network, and cost-effectively extend advanced metering applications to outlying areas via the wireless network.
To help customers increase energy efficiency, put them in greater control of their bills and use of power through direct load control programs and up-to-the-minute presentation of consumption and time-of-use price signals via in-home displays, PES in the near future plans to use the network.
The Tennessee Valley Authority has provided PES with the approval and funding to participate in its Generation Partners program which will allow it to use its Tantalus network for bi-directional metering. Also, through this the consumers will be able to sell power generated from solar photovoltaic, wind or small hydro sources back to the utility.
“Pulaski’s ‘can do’ attitude was evident right from the start,” Eric Murray, President and CEO of Tantalus, said. “They realized the boon a fiber optic network would bring to the community and how coupling it with Smart Grid functionality could improve utility operational efficiency and create a distribution system in which consumers and utilities play an active role in reducing consumption. Being singled out as one of North America’s most innovative utilities is a great honor for everyone involved in this groundbreaking deployment.”
In related news, Tantalus Systems Corp. has announced that Johnson City Power Board has selected Tantalus for a system-wide Smart Grid communications network.Deepika Mala is a contributing editor for TMCnet. To read more of her articles, please visit her columnist page.
Edited by Patrick Barnard