On Tuesday, Johannesburg power utility City Power announced that they will be implementing a smart meter ‘load limiting’ pilot initiative to reduce the onset of load shedding.
According to City Power the smart meters will be able to remotely monitor each households energy consumption and notify users via SMS when ‘the threat of load shedding is imminent’, Fin24 reported.
“You won’t be load shed (if you reduce power usage) because the amount of electricity that you’ll be using would be within the required standards,” Hloni Motloung, speaking on behalf of City Power managing director Sicelo Xulu, told Fin24.
Johannesburg currently has 65,000 smart meters installed and plans are in place to deploy the devices to 150,000 households by October 2015.
When Eskom notifies municipalities of load shedding then load limiting will come into effect. According to City Power “load limiting is also expected to be scheduled in advance to reduce consumption and pressure on the grid”, Fin24 reported
“Households will be informed of the daily consumption rate and consumers are expected to adhere to this threshold. In the event of non-compliance, households that don’t comply will be remotely disconnected, thus sparing conforming customers from load shedding”, City Power said in a statement.
In addition to ‘load limiting’, another concept termed the ‘ripple control’ could potentially be implemented as well.
The ripple control enables City Power to remotely disable household geysers during peak demand times, Fin24 reported.
“Through the implementation of Ripple Control, City Power is able to control approximately 110MW of electricity, the rollout of solar water geysers around Johannesburg have generated an additional saving of 60MW is possible power and the Kelvin power station has contributed an additional 150MW of capacity”, Xulu said in a statement.