What is smart metering

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Smart Metering...

What is a smart meter? How does it differ from the current meter?

The smart electricity meter is an advanced meter that can store information (such as consumption readings) and transmit the data via a network to a central system. It can also receive commands from a remote location. The existing electricity meter does not permit any of this. In the case of existing meters the consumption has to be read manually and the meter does not communicate to and from a central system

In Malta Smart metering encapsulates the concept of managing new metering devices for both water and electricity services. Smart meters bring an end to estimated bills and door-to-door meter readings, and provide customers, Utilities, and the Regulator with accurate information on the amount of electricity being used. Smart meters will empower customers to make choices on how much energy and water they use, and when to make use of such resources. Enemalta PLC and Water Services Corporation will be installing a two-way communication system that will allow their meters to be accessed remotely, and at the same time being able to retrieve consumption and other important data from the meter without needing to visit the consumer premise. The Utilities in Malta are using different technology for electricity and water metering. In the case of water metering a ‘smart device’ is attached to the present water meter, permitting local storage of water consumption, as well as remote reading of the water meter. Communication between the water meters and a central station is done through radio frequency. Within the countries energy consumer market, electricity smart meters will replace all electromechanical meters around the island. This will not only allow for remote meter reading, but will also provide addition benefits related to remote meter management permitting the introduction of new services, such as electricity prepayment.

In addition, smart meters have the capability to measure the energy being fed back into the grid by any customer who has a micro-generation technology installed (e.g. solar panels or wind turbines). Furthermore this permits the provision of money credits on the consumers account.

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