Seattle City Light Begins Installation of Communications Network for Advanced Metering

Seattle City Light has started installation of the communications network that will automatically deliver customers’ energy consumption data once advanced meters are installed.
Photo of lineworker Craig Reid installing a relay.

Seattle City Light Lineworker Craig Reid installs one of the first relays for the communications network that will support Advanced Metering.

Seattle City Light has started installation of the communications network that will automatically deliver customers’ energy consumption data once advanced meters are installed.

The first relays and collectors were installed July 27 in Lake City. The equipment collects fully encrypted data sent wirelessly from advanced meters and then uses existing cellular networks to deliver the information to City Light. Eventually, the utility plans to connect the collectors to its existing fiber-optic network.

“This is a significant milestone for the Advanced Metering program,” Program Manager J.R. Gonzalez said. “The communications network links advanced meters to City Light so we can collect consumption information and generate customer bills without sending a person into a customer’s yard to read the meter. Construction started on time and helps to set the pace for the rollout of advanced meters throughout our service territory, beginning in mid-2017.”

Over the next few months, about 390 relays and collectors will be installed on utility poles and streetlight poles throughout City Light’s service territory.

Advanced metering will offer many benefits to customers, starting with more power to understand how much electricity you are using and what that costs you so you can make informed decisions regarding your energy use. Additionally, the advanced meters will automatically report power outages, speeding City Light’s response and restoration.

The technology will enable City Light to consider adding other services, such as the ability for customers to pay in advance for their electricity, and alternative rate structures that could provide savings opportunities.

To learn more about City Light’s Advanced Metering program please visit: http://www.seattle.gov/light/ami/