A smarter grid through
From the Internet to our cell phones and televisions, digital technology has become the standard for transmitting information, offering the instant communication we've all come to depend on. Now, digital technology is coming to the power grid that delivers our electricity. You've probably heard this updated grid called "the smart grid" or "grid modernization" – but no matter what it's called, what matters most is how it will serve you better.
A smarter grid through grid modernization
Many people think of smart meters when they think of this new technology, but replacing older meters with advanced meters is just one example of how the company is leveraging advancements in technology to improve service to our customers. In fact, we're updating the grid all the way from the substation to the customer's home, which means:
- Many customers will have more insight on their energy usage, and tools that will help them curb their energy use and save costs on their monthly bill.
- Grid operators will have better visibility on the system to remotely reroute power as needed to shorten outages – or prevent them all together.
- A more efficient, more reliable grid that is better prepared to manage the growth of renewable energy resources like solar and wind.
Ways we're modernizing the grid
In the future, beyond improved grid efficiency, a modernized grid could mean that customers have new insight into their own energy consumption. Imagine being able to use your energy portal to identify which appliances and equipment are costing the most to operate. Customers can begin to make better informed decisions about when to replace old appliances with more efficient equipment.
Plus grid intelligence could allow customers to use a computer or phone to remotely program heating and cooling systems, dishwashers, water heaters and other appliances for greater efficiency. This functionality is not yet available, but current efforts to upgrade the grid are laying the groundwork for these types of applications.
We're dedicated to helping our customers take control of their energy use through a smarter grid. As we deploy this advanced grid technology, we're excited about shaping the future of energy use together with you.
What is a smart meter?
"Smart meter" – or "advanced meter" – is an industry term that refers to a meter that communicates using digital technology. This advanced meter (also called a "digital meter") establishes two-way communications between the utility and metered premises, such as a home, business, factory or warehouse.
What are the benefits of advanced metering?
Fewer estimated bills. With advanced meters, Duke Energy representatives will no longer need to enter homes to read meters. Customers who read their own meters will no longer need to submit their monthly meter reading. Having an advanced meter will also help significantly reduce the need for us to estimate bills. Your energy bill will reflect your actual usage.
Faster Service. Are you moving? With advanced metering, you may no longer have to wait hours or days for a Duke Energy representative to come to your premise to connect or disconnect your energy service. Two-way communicating advanced meters make it possible for utilities to connect and disconnect service remotely – saving time and reducing guesswork.
Fewer and shorter outages and more. Since grid operators have better visibility on the system, they can remotely reroute power as needed to shorten or prevent outages. Advanced metering also lays the foundation for fewer estimated bills, since they can be read remotely, and for better energy management tools that customers can use to manage their usage.
Greater Control of how you use energy. The advanced meter is capable of capturing daily energy usage data, which, for many customers, will be available online the next day. Having this information available on a daily basis can help you make wiser energy decision and avoid billing surprises at the end of the month.
Quicker response to power outages. Although today you would still need to notify us if you were experiencing a power outage, since the advanced meter is capable of two-way conversation with our computer systems, we will know more about outages than we know today. This could help us respond faster to restore service. In the future, your advanced meter may even report the outage for you!
Advanced meter facts:
You maintain complete control of your energy usage. The meter provides real-time information so that you can make informed decisions about your energy use. Your utility won't remotely control any of your electrical equipment. The meter simply sends us data to help us bill you accurately and keep your power reliable.
Your information is safe and protected. Your energy usage information is strictly confidential. Duke Energy does not share this data with anyone. The information coming from our meters is encrypted and protected from the moment it is collected until the moment it is purged.
Digital smart meters use lower radio frequencies than other household devices. Advanced meters communicate using radio frequencies that are well below the RF levels produced by other common household devices like cell phones, baby monitors and satellite TVs. Radio frequency emissions used or emitted by advanced meters are only a small fraction of the limits set by the Federal Communications Commission, the agency that enforces that safety limits of radio frequency emissions.