Environmental Protection

AEP Ohio to Use GE Smart Meters in Demonstration

AEP Ohio, a unit of American Electric Power, will purchase 110,000 GE smart meters as part of its gridSMARTSM demonstration project in northeast central Ohio.

The GE meters are equipped with Silver Spring Networks’ IP-based network technology, which creates a secure and intelligent communications platform for the smart grid. This platform enables two-way communications between the utility and consumers, supporting critical peak and time-of-use pricing and more. Time-of-use pricing can offer consumers lower electric rates at night and other off-peak times. By encouraging people to move energy-intensive activities like laundry to times of lower demand, utilities can delay the need for new power plants, improve system reliability, reduce their carbon footprint and save their customers money.

“We are pleased to be a part of AEP’s approach to a holistic and comprehensive smart grid model with advanced technologies working together to maximize efficiency and reliability for both the utility and its customers,” said Bob Gilligan, vice president of GE Energy’s transmission and distribution business.

“It’s an exciting opportunity to deliver more useable power for every kilowatt generated, while helping consumers manage their energy usage and keep their costs under control, without impacting their lifestyle.”

Smart meters work in conjunction with grid automation technologies to provide real-time information on the grid’s status, right down to the consumer’s home, for improved performance and productivity. These automated systems help prevent problems before they occur and resolve outages sooner.

This meter deployment is expected to begin in 2010. GE also is working with AEP to deploy technologies that help reduce electrical losses on power lines.

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