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Smart Meter Consumer Data Study

In 2011 , 493 U.S. electric utilities had 37,290,374 advanced ("smart") metering infrastructure (AMI) installations. About 77% were installed by Investor Owned utilities and about 90% were residential customer installations.

Advanced metering infrastructure includes meters that measure and record electricity usage at a minimum of hourly intervals and provide the data to both the utility and the utility customer at least once daily. They range from basic hourly interval meters to real-time meters with built-in two-way communication capable of recording and transmitting instantaneous data.

With so many meters installed the question becomes what benefits consumers are utilities and their customers seeing from these installations.   A potential project would research this question by looking at a sampling of utilities with smart meters to:

  • Understand what smart meter data is being made available to consumers – e.g., intervals, frequency of updates, delays in the data, data formats, analysis capabilities, interfaces to energy management systems, etc.
  • Understand what data is available to researchers to study energy consumption and consumer energy behavior patterns.

The project would likely require a combination of web site research and calls directly to a sampling of utilities.  A study of secondary data and publications could also be useful.   Conclusions and recommendations to regulators, consumer advocates and utilities could be an output of such a project.