The Metal and Engineering Corporation (MetEC), a state owned high-tech industry group,has introduced a smart electric meter. The smart meters, which will be installed in residential and commercial buildings, will automate energy measurement in Ethiopia.
Hi-Tech Industry (HTI), which is one of the several companies under MetEC, started producing the smart meters with the help of other sisters industries.
Tena Kurunde (Brigadier General), Deputy General Director of MetEC, stated that the corporation has started transferring the products for the sole electric utility, Ethiopian Electric Utility (EEU), as of Thursday August 21.
He said that the new meter is compatible with the national energy network which is in the process of being implemented.
This smart meter, known as IT-Plus Smart Energy Meter, will help reduce electric blackouts, he added.
The deputy head stated that all the product parts including the technology are fully undertaken by local professionals but some of the components will be produced abroad with HTI design.
Hi-Tech will produce 1,200 smart meters per day, when the company runs at full capacity.
HTI was established as one of the companies under the Metals and Engineering Corporation (MetEC) in 2011. The company manufactures electronic and electromechanical technology products.
Currently, MetEC has become a major ally for electric projects. It is currently undertaking the electromechanical and hydraulic steel structure of the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam, and it supplies transformers and power factor correctors to the power utility.
In Ethiopia the electrical meters currently being used are imported, but since these are being made here it will reduce costs dramatically.
EEU currently has over two million clients, while its GTP target is to expand it to four million.
The utility stated that the introduction of smart meter production in the country will help meet its GTP goals.
A smart meter is an electronic device that records consumption of electric energy in intervals of an hour or less and communicates that information at least daily back to the utility for monitoring and billing purposes. Smart meters enable two-way communication between the meter and the central system. Unlike home energy monitors, smart meters can gather data for remote reporting. Such an advanced metering infrastructure (AMI) differs from traditional automatic meter reading (AMR) in that it enables two-way communications with the meter.