What's Changing?

Before Smart Grid  New Smart Grid Capabilities
Customers have limited choices.  The smart grid is paving the way for more products and services to better suit individual customer needs. These include energy- and cost-saving programs.
Capabilities before grid modernization  New smart grid-enabled capabilities
Often, bills had to be estimated until your meter could be physically read.  New advanced meters send usage information directly to us, so your bills no longer have to be estimated.
Wait-times lasted hours or even days to have new service connected or old service disconnected.  With smart meters, we can remotely connect or disconnect service. 
Monthly energy use information was received weeks after the end of the monthly billing cycle.  With more accurate information from digital technology, simply use online tools to access near real-time information about your energy usage. 
Before smart grid  New smart grid capabilities 
Linemen are deployed to a general area of the grid – sometimes a stretch of more than 30 miles of line. They have to drive or walk along the line until they locate the cause of the outage.  Smart grid operators can pinpoint where an energy issue has occurred and direct linemen to a specific location. This removes guesswork and improves restoration time. 
Linemen physically operate grid equipment to restore sections of the grid until the problem is fixed and all power can be restored.  Intelligent devices on the grid can minimize the number of customers impacted by an outage. 
Customers need to inform us of an outage.  The energy provider can send signals to smart meters to check if a customer's power is on or off. This reduces overall outage response times.
Before smart grid  New smart grid capabilities 
Energy grid operators rely on linemen and a limited number of alarms to know if there is trouble on an energy circuit.  Technologies such as line sensors, intelligent substations and communication devices provide real-time information on system health so that smart grid operators can prevent many energy issues before they happen. 
Energy grid operators use a limited amount of data to make decisions about reducing the load on the grid to make it operate more efficiently.  Digital smart grid management systems can analyze large amounts of data every second – including weather, wholesale energy costs and energy demand. This information then determines how the grid can be operated to maximize efficiencies. 
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