South Korea tests wireless metering for energy efficiency

Korea Telecom plans to roll out an advanced, wireless electricity metering system as part of South Korea’s smart-grid test pilot program on Jeju Island.

Described as the “world’s largest smart-grid community,” the Jeju demonstration complex is bringing together 160 companies and other organizations for field tests of a variety of advanced energy technologies. The latest system to be deployed is wirelessly networked smart metering.

South Korea’s Fountain Springs will provide the smart meters for the test system, while On-Ramp Wireless and Korea Telecom plan to deliver the underlying communications platform. The technology is being piloted as part of the country’s Smart-Grid Initiative.

The initiative is aimed at accelerating the deployment of smart-grid applications, lowering costs and improving energy efficiency.

The wireless metering system being tested is “truly changing the way electricity is managed and consumed in Korea,” said CS Hwang, CEO of Fountain Springs. Designed to help utilities manage power consumption across all end points of the distribution network, the system will support “thousands of meters per access point in challenging urban RF (radio frequency) environments,” according to On-Ramp.

The technology will “completely address the meter density and capacity challenges of the South Korean environment,” said Joaquin Silva, president and CEO of On-Ramp. By reducing network and operational costs compared to other systems, he added, the communications platform will “enable Korea Telecom to work towards their intentions to gain a large piece of the global smart-grid market.”

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