By Anthony Capkun
February 7, 2013 – IBM been selected to continue supporting Ontario’s Independent Electricity System Operator (IESO) by operating the province’s Meter Data Management & Repository (MDM/R) system with new computing infrastructure and an updated operating environment.
The 5-year $68.5 million contract was awarded following a competitive procurement process and includes options to extend to seven or 10 years, says IBM.
“The utilities industry is transforming at a rapid pace and requires smarter infrastructures able to improve the performance and sustainability of energy systems while maintaining customer trust,” said Michael Valocchi, IBM’s global energy and utilities industry leader. “Insights gained from big data information networks and analytics systems will help consumers make smarter use of energy and utilities make better informed energy decisions to benefit all stakeholders.”
Under the agreement, IBM says it will enhance the overall performance of the MDM/R through new computing infrastructure, enhanced web services facility to support increasing volumes of requests for consumption information, enhanced disaster recovery capabilities, and operational improvements with a focus on reducing risk and costs.
IBM explains the MDM/R is a core part of Ontario’s Smart Metering Initiative, enabling the billing of Time-of-Use (ToU) rates and encouraging consumers to shift more of their energy use to off-peak periods. The MDM/R supports the meter to billing operations of 72 local distribution utilities and their 4.7 million customers, processing over 100 million transactions every day. It receives, validates, estimates and allows for editing and storage of meter read data received from smart meters, then it translates the resulting hourly energy consumption data into ToU billing quantities for use by local distribution utilities.
IESO is responsible for managing Ontario’s bulk electricity power system and operating the wholesale market.