Tacoma Public Utilities deploys AMI for water, electric network

Tacoma Public Utilities Administration Building. Courtesy of Xylem.

Building on its successful implementation of advanced metering infrastructure (AMI) in the water department, Tacoma Public Utilities (TPU) is continuing with deployment of AMI for its power department.

TPU deployed AMI technology from Xylem including Sensus Stratus IQ™ residential electric meters and the FlexNet® communication network, to improve operational efficiency and customer service, and to support the area’s economic growth. The improved network delivers 6.5 million registered reads each day, giving customers the benefit of frequent billing with smaller payments and rapidly improved response times.

“We no longer have to estimate meter reads because of access issues, since the advanced meters are remotely managed,” said Sally Mohr, AMI program delivery director for TPU. “We receive accurate data to appropriately bill customers and ensure efficient customer service, especially during severe weather outages.”

The upgraded infrastructure aided in storm recovery as recently as January. After a violent storm with high winds and heavy rainfall left thousands in the area without power, TPU restored power within hours.

TPU also deployed bellwether ally® water meters and smart gateways with pressure sensors from Sensus to ensure near real-time pressure management.

“We have already seen proactive pressure management help us anticipate customer issues preemptively,” said Dan Martin, TPU senior data analyst. “Recently, during routine maintenance, a detected pressure fluctuation enabled our crew to address a lodged rock in the valve within hours, averting potential customer impacts.”

“Xylem has consistently demonstrated responsiveness, and we appreciate that our team has direct visibility into our data,” said Mohr. “This level of transparency ultimately empowers our customers to take control of their bills and become active participants in managing their water and electricity usage.” To learn about how Xylem technology has aided TPU’s proactive approach to utility expansion, read more in the full case study.

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