Consumers Energy has picked SmartSynch to provide the advanced metering system that will form the foundation of a grid and meter modernisation programme for its 1.8 million electric customers in Michigan.

The decision makes Consumers Energy, which serves more than two thirds of Michigan across a 32,000-square-mile service territory, the largest US utility to choose a cellular-based communication system for the smart meter deployment phase of its grid modernization programme, said the firm.

Consumer Energy’s decision to use existing cellular networks for large-scale, high-performance Smart Grid communications, instead of building and maintaining a private network, comes after extensive research and testing of available industry solutions, said the firm.

Meter installation is scheduled to begin in Muskegon County in August 2012 with installation phases continuing through 2019 across the utility’s service territory. In addition to the 1.8 million electric meters, the company continues to evaluate the installation of communications modules on about 600,000 gas meters in areas where the utility serves customers with both electricity and natural gas.

For more metering news click here