The technology being tested will ensure that any SMETS1 meters installed prior to the SMETS2 go-live date will smoothly communicate with the new smart metering network.
The Data Communications Company (DCC) will finalise its system to integrate SMETS1 smart meters with the new SMETS2 metering network in Cardiff after SMS Plc successfully tendered to house the DCC’s SMETS1 metering test lab.
The facilities and expert support provided by SMS Plc at the company’s metering data centre in the Welsh capital will assist the DCC in communicating, managing and integrating SMETS1 devices into the same network used to enable the next generation SMETS2 technology.
Set up in 2013 with a mandate to establish and manage the data and communications network that enables the connection of smart meters to the business systems of energy suppliers and network operators, the DCC will use SMS Plc’s Welsh base to help finalise the approach ahead of SMETS2’s nationwide roll out – scheduled to begin later this year.
SMETS2 smart meters will gradually replace the SMETS1 and Automatic Meter Reading (AMR) technologies, which are currently being used to roll out the UK government’s Smart Metering Implementation Programme.
The metering test lab, constructed by SMS Plc at the Merlin House metering branch, is due to be operational from around mid-April housing between 30 and 50 gas and electricity SMETS1 meters and accommodating a number of DCC personnel over the next six months.
The testing to be undertaken by the DCC in coordination with SMS Plc is required to ensure that any customers who have had or will have SMETS1 meters installed prior the SMETS2 go-live date will smoothly transfer into the new system.
Commenting on the development, Managing Director of SMS Plc’s Energy Services division, Tim Mortlock, said: “We’re delighted to have secured this tender and it is testament to our teams that we have been able to mobilise the construction and preparation of this facility so quickly.
“This demonstrates our commitment to playing a key role in the ongoing developments within the smart metering market.”