National utility Ethiopian Electric Utility (EEU) has completed a pilot project of smart meters with plans for a wider rollout as part of a national smart grid system, local media report.

The state energy distributor reported that the smart meters – called IT-plus – had helped the utility to control demand by allowing EEU to disable power to specific commercial and industrial clients.

Bitweded Gebrealise, CEO of the EEU Wire Business, said; “The main advantage of the electric meter is that it saves electric power, especially for industries.

He added: “The system also has intelligence value as power blackouts could easily be achieved at a national level if the need arises.”

EEU received the stock of smart meters from the Metal & Engineering Corporation (MetEC), a contractor charged with helping the Ethiopian Electric and Power Corporation (EEPCo) to repair and maintain its transformers and diesel generators as well as manufacture electro and hydro mechanical equipment.

Local meter manufacturing

The meters are manufactured collaboratively by Hi‐Tech Engineering, Ethio Plastic Industries, Metal Fabrication Industries and Hibret Manufacturing Industry.

Plans are underway to establish a smart grid system at a national level once the company starts manufacturing its full capacity of 1,200 meters daily, said Mr Gebrealise.

The new meters will accommodate a three‐phase electric power system, which is expected to reduce the processing time for industrial applicants.