Liberty Lake, Wash., September 25, 2012 — Itron Inc. announced the availability of OpenWay AURUM, its newest product tailored to the Brazilian market. This product's modular and flexible design combines Itron's metering and communication technology to help utilities meet business objectives by lowering operational costs, improving service and protecting revenue.
The Itron meter is housed in a secure box, which is mounted on a utility pole rather than on a house or business, reducing the possibility of meter tampering. In addition, AURUM takes advantage of Itron's RF mesh network to provide a cost effective solution for advanced metering and smart metering initiatives.
AURUM offers utilities a solid platform on which to build an advanced metering infrastructure that will support their needs today while positioning them for future smart grid applications.
This innovative product is capable of providing two-way communication between utilities and connected assets in the field, allowing for remote meter readings, control and monitoring of field components, power outage and restoration notifications, and remote service connection and disconnection. All of these features improve efficiency and provide cost savings.
Utilities in Brazil face challenges that significantly impact operating costs. According to the Brazilian regulator Agência Nacional de Energia Elétrica's (ANEEL) website, distributors record high annual losses, both technical and non-technical. It is estimated that in Brazil, the losses in the electricity distribution network are responsible for about fifteen percent of the power purchased by distributors.
AURUM reduces non-technical losses by allowing utilities to manage hundreds of thousand meters with a single system, providing reliable, synchronized and intelligent real-time information. Most important, these meters are installed in a secured box on pole tops, away from the traditional point of use. This greatly limits access to the meter, which in turn reduces the likelihood of diversion and non-technical loss.