Morristown Utility Systems' Voltage Reduction Initiatives Save City Hundreds of Thousands of Dollars Innovative Tennessee utility's money saving AMI strategies show reductions of up to 4 percent in peak demand charges through a single application
Tantalus, a leading provider of Smart Grid communications, announced the results of significant utility cost savings through its Closed Loop Voltage Reduction (CLVR') application at Morristown Utility Systems (MUS) in eastern Tennessee. MUS had previously secured funding through a grant from the Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA) to deploy voltage management applications as part of a broader energy efficiency strategy. Project funds were awarded through a competitive selection process based on merit, potential value, and potential cost savings to both the utility and its consumers. Tantalus leveraged MUS' existing Fiber-to-the-Home (FTTH) communications system in support of a comprehensive advanced metering infrastructure (AMI) deployment throughout the city. As only the third utility in the state of Tennessee to implement FTTH for data communications and the first utility in the nation to utilize CLVR in conjunction with the TUNet® AMI network, MUS continues to demonstrate a commitment to adopting enabling technologies to work for customers in cost saving and conservation initiatives. As a result of investments in CLVR alone, the utility has captured cost savings in the hundreds of thousands for its consumers through reduced load charges during peak demand while simultaneously improving overall system reliability.
'In service to our customers, we're always looking for new ways to improve our operations and manage costs,' said Jody Wigington, General Manager of MUS. 'One way we are demonstrating that commitment is through the CLVR application which has consistently allowed us to safely reduce systemwide peak electrical consumption with no impact in power quality to our customers. Over the past two years, this application has produced more than $866,000 in savings, which we pass on to our customers in the form of some of the lowest power rates in the country.'
CLVR features TRUPush', an event-based notification feature which continuously monitors and delivers data on system health within seconds of an incident, whether it is a power blink, outage, or voltage drop. The communications system allows an 'always on' connection which enables the instantaneous delivery of an unprecedented level of automation and granular data enables MUS to optimize operational efficiency and improve outage management. Wigington continued, 'This is a real time set of eyes on the system pulse that we never before would have thought possible.'
'The strategic investments in telecommunications and utility automation technologies made by the city leaders of Morristown are paving the way to establish one of the 'smartest' grids in the country. Further, these investments position Morristown with a technology infrastructure on par with some of the largest cities in America. This can be a key element in attracting businesses to the area and spurring economic development. At the same time, these investments are also improving reliability and empowering consumers to understand and manage energy usage,' remarked Peter Londa, President and CEO of Tantalus. 'We highly value the opportunity to work with MUS given their progressive initiatives in building an efficient and reliable distribution network.'
Tantalus' CLVR program is available as part of a full suite of TUNet applications for advanced utility data collection, management, monitor and control and is currently being evaluated and utilized by utilities throughout TVA and other regions of the United States. A white paper entitled 'Closed Loop Voltage Reduction (CLVR) - A TUNet Application,' is available and discusses additional results of the CLVR program at MUS.
Tantalus provides two-way, real-time data communications networks to monitor and control electric, gas and water utilities. TUNet® - the Tantalus Utility Network - is an end-to-end WAN/LAN/HAN communications system that operates with 220 MHz RF, 900 MHz, and IP-based networks including Fiber, WiMAX and GPRS/cellular, either individually or in combination. TUNet's patented and patents pending technologies are purpose built for the Smart Grid. The Tantalus network unites a utility's applications, making advanced metering, outage management, power quality monitoring, load control, and distribution automation cost-effective and practical throughout both urban and rural service areas.