Neoenergia invests in internet of things for smart meters and management platform

    internet of things; IoT

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Art with icons that refer to the internet of things on blue background

Technology is deployed by the company in smart meter designs, allowing to collect more detailed information about energy consumption

Increasingly present in people's lives, the internet of things (IoT) is already a reality at Neoenergia, making everyday activities more efficient and sustainable. Today, billions of devices spread around the world are connected to the internet are added, allowing them to process large volumes of data and transforming it into information so that companies have more efficient and secure control of their activities and operations. Neoenergia uses technology in smart meter connectivity and invests in a management platform to manage the communication of these devices.

Cat-M1 is an internet for things (IoT) technology and is being used by the company in measurement projects for data communication with smart meters. It is a resource that allows you to collect more detailed information about energy consumption and quality levels delivered to each consumer unit, in addition to supporting customers with information relevant to the management of energy use, such as monitoring the consumption itself in real time.

This cellular technology is used to connect millions of lower value-added devices with better coverage networks and lower connection costs. That is, it allows to aggregate a large number of connected devices simultaneously, without interference, in a wide coverage area and with affordable costs. Because it's a licensed frequency range, the Cat-M1 adds an extra layer of security to the business.

In addition to consumer gains, smart metering plays an important role in network efficiency and loss-fighting.

"We have managed to reach our last mile of communication to the final consumer and consequently improve the monitoring and management of our entire distribution network. For example, we can instantly identify a power outage, monitor the flow of charge consumed and generated by microgeneration systems, improve energy quality, identify possible thefts of electricity and even make more information available to our customers," explains Ricardo Leite, Superintendent of Smart Grids at Neoenergia.

The project includes all Neoenergia companies, having the schedule with two distinct stages: the first of which contemplated the physical installation of the meters in 2021 and in the second make were installed Cat-M1 communication modules in 2022. The project already adds 1,600 smart meters connected and is expected to install 4,500 new equipment for the next few years. In total, R$ 6 million were invested over the years 2021 and 2022.

To monitor the use of more modern connectivity technologies, Neoenergia has also implemented a new IoT / M2M (Machine to Machine Communication) management platform, with the aim of improving the management of cellular communication services for Smart Grids devices. Previously, it was not possible to manage the connectivity and data consumption of Telecommunications Operators' Simcards in real time. The information was only known by evaluating carriers' invoices.

It is a software that performs real-time measurement of the connectivity of more than 70,000 Simcards, evaluating consumption by identifying irregularities in the data connection of devices. With this, it is possible to ensure that data consumption remains within the contracted packages, generating efficiency in communication expenses. More than 20Gb of data from field devices is trafficked daily.  

The platform is in operation in the concessionaires that are part of the group — Neoenergia Coelba (BA), Neoenergia Pernambuco (PE), Neoenergia Cosern (RN) and Neoenergia Elektro (SP and MS) and by the end of the year it will be used in Neoenergia Brasília (DF).

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