Monday, December 07, 2009

Curiosity finally got the better of me.

I made the phone call. This device is a radio receiver and I would guess transmitter. It is the start of a system that Xcel Energy is installing in our region. When complete it will remotely read your electric and gas meters.

What is not clear to me at this point is does it also transmit that data directly to Xcel (probably hopping from unit to unit until it reach the collection point) or will we see roving vehicles that gather the data as it passes each unit. I would guess it might also at some location connect to a copper phone line or fiber optic network connection and transmit the data.

Secondly I would guess that each gas and electric customer will need an upgrade of the equipment at their residence so the data can be transmitted from your house.

Now that I know what it is I 'll dig a little deeper for more details.

Update 1: See the comments for complete dialog
 The Admiral said...
 I believe it is part of the new "SmartGrid"
It all sounds like a wonderful idea, but it isn't. When completed, the government through regulation at the local power company will be able to dictate the temperature in your own home, and how much electricity you may use.
Update 2: Here is more information about SmartGrid. Oh!.... grab two aspirin coffee, tea or bourbon then read on.