Raleigh, N.C., August 9, 2010 – BT, the leading networked IT services provider, has announced that it is backing long-range radio and the Sensus FlexNet AMI (Advanced Metering Infrastructure) system for the UK’s smart metering initiative.
After spending 18 months analyzing the various smart metering communications options available, BT has partnered with Arqiva, the UK communications infrastructure and media services company, and intelligence and security company, Detica, to offer a dedicated and secure long-range radio communications solution for Great Britain.
Sensus and Arqiva have a partnership that enables Arqiva to implement a long-range, radio-based communications platform using the Sensus FlexNet system.
FlexNet gives utilities a purpose-built smart meter application which operates over dedicated, licensed radio spectrum. Unlike cellular and power line carrier options, long-range radio can provide nationwide coverage and dependable reception for all utility types, regardless of the location of smart meters or other infrastructure.
In its announcement, Olivia Garfield, BT Group Strategy Director, said that it is vital that any smart metering communications solution is designed for ubiquitous coverage of homes and is thoroughly secure and resilient. She went on to say that BT believes that long-range radio is the only technology to offer true nationwide coverage.
“BT’s decision to back long range radio confirms that a dedicated, purpose-built network, utilizing the FlexNet solution, is the preferred technology for such mission critical communications,” said Peter Mainz, President and CEO of Sensus. “FlexNet is a proven application with nearly eight million endpoints deployed and has been proven to meet the standards required for large scale smart metering initiatives.”
Because FlexNet was designed from the outset as a smart meter and smart grid solution, gas, water and electric utilities can all securely run multiple applications, such as demand response, Sensus distribution automation and SCADA (supervisory control and data acquisition) with clarity, over dedicated channels that are free from other types of communications traffic, making FlexNet preferable to public wireless, cellular and power line carrier approaches.