ARTICLES Apr 19, 2022

Smart Metering - Local Networking Options and Considerations

There are several considerations in deciding a metering network topology. Some of the considerations include proximity of meters to each other, extent and type of property being metered, and frequency of measurement.

Typically the uplink decision is simpler - we can go with GSM or WiFi based on which is more reliable in that area. In general we prefer GSM wherever the signals are reliable, as there are lesser points of failure leading to better stability. Deciding the local network isn’t as simple though. We will walk through the considerations and how they contribute to deciding on a network.

Wired or Wireless Communication?

If the property is spread across a large area, wireless network is preferred. Wired networks are typically used only in cases of multi-storey buildings or otherwise clustered layout of meters. Even if the cluster repeats over a large spread of area, wired might be used in these cases, with each cluster uplinking independently.

Star or Mesh?

Proximity of meters to each other contributes into this call. If the meters are within 100 meters of each other in most cases, we can go for a mesh. If the meters are far apart (even upto few kilometers), then a star network with long range is preferred.

Wired power or battery?

This is primarily decided by how frequently we need to take out data and the ease of accessing the meter for battery changes. In most cases, wherever wired power is feasible, we recommend a wired DC power supply with backup to enable frequent reporting of data. Frequent data ensures better analytica and savings.

Conclusion

A survey by an experienced technician is ideal in deciding the metering technology that is right for your building or community. You can contact us to engage for a survey of the property.