Awesense Releases SenseNET Service for Economically Reducing Power Losses Due to Theft and Equipment Failure

Service offering eliminates technical and financial barriers to solving a $202 billion problem. 

January 22, 2013—Vancouver, B.C.—Awesense , a leader in technologies for reducing grid power losses, is pleased to announce a new service offering based on its SenseNET solution that will help utilities curb power losses and recover lost revenue due to theft, transformer overloads and other problems without any upfront investment.

The SenseNET system is a comprehensive, economical solution combining hardware, data analytics, networking and advanced power monitoring for identifying, characterizing and verifying power losses from equipment failures as well as power diversion caused by meter tampering or wire “tapping.” The company’s technology is currently in use helping North American customers like Fortis BC and others recover tens of millions of dollars in avoidable power losses.

The SenseNET system also serves as a planning tool for grid operators and power providers, providing customers the opportunity to pinpoint potential vulnerabilities before major losses or failures occur.

While Awesense to date has sold SenseNET technology systems to utilities, the new SenseNET Service will permit utilities to obtain the benefits of the technology through a managed service offering. Under the new program, Awesense will collaborate with utility customers on designing, implementing and managing loss reductions initiatives. Awesense will then be compensated through a percentage of verified, recovered revenue or through a fee. Utilities do not need to make independent capital investments or dedicate funds from operating budgets: the SenseNET Service effectively becomes a supplemental source of revenue.

A U.S. utility with approximately 34,000 meters and 1,800 miles of energized lines has already begun to deploy the SenseNET system under a service contract. The utility loses an estimated 5 percent of its generated power to losses. Utilities in Malaysia, Turkey, Bulgaria, and the Czech Republic will begin trials of the SenseNET Service in the first quarter of 2013 while other utilities are beginning to evaluate the service offering.

“Unanticipated power losses are a growing global problem. Utilities generate billions of dollars of power every year that they don’t get compensated for and that never gets to their customers,” said Awesense CEO Mischa Steiner-Jovic. “Unanticipated power losses and electricity theft also cause fires, power shortages, injuries among other problems. This is not a victimless crime.”

The World Bank estimates that $202 billion worth of electricity generated is lost annually due to technical failures or theft. In India, approximately 27 percent of the electricity generated gets siphoned off through theft while the peak power demand on average exceeds supply by 9 percent, according to the Ministry of Energy. Equipment failures and power diversion are often the root cause of India’s chronic widespread blackouts, such as the power failures of August 2012 that left 640 million residents without power. Power loss cut India’s economic growth by an estimated 1.2 percent annually, according to government statistics.

Even in the U.S. and Europe losses are staggeringly high: energy diversion costs U.S. utilities and their customers an estimated $6 billion a year in the U.S., making energy the third most stolen commodity, right behind credit card information and cars. The challenges in catching perpetrators—which can range from individuals to sophisticated marijuana growing operations–often prevents utilities and law enforcement from taking adequate steps to stop it. In Ireland, power theft has increased by 50 percent since 2009.

SenseNET changes the dynamic by greatly reducing the capital, equipment and personnel needed to stop power losses while at the same time giving grid operators and utilities an enhanced ability to find power losses. The heart of the system is the SenseNET Monitor, a highly accurate, networked sensor that clips onto transmission and distribution lines. SenseNET Monitors can characterize the power consumption at up to 100 locations at the same time with a 99 percent plus accuracy. Field crews can attach one in less than two minutes with a hot stick or truck. SenseNET Monitors can also be deployed underground.

TheSenseNET Suite is a complimentary software platform for analyzing data and managing ongoing operations. SensNET Prioritizer detects abnormalities and prioritizes loss recovery efforts: it mines field data along with data from meter data management and billing systems. SenseNET CORE, meanwhile, is employed to visualize data, generate reports, identify situations requiring immediate attention and exchange information with SenseNET Monitors, networking equipment and other components.

“The electricity lost in Rio de Janeiro alone annually could provide power to 6.2 million homes by some estimates. Providing effective solutions to reduce losses and protect revenue is part of our strategy for Brazil and other Latin American countries,” said Marcos Rizzo, vice president of business development of ELO Sistemas Eletronicos, which is collaborating with Awesense in Latin American markets.

 

About Awesense
Based in Vancouver, B.C., Awesense develops technology, services and tools for reducing grid power losses and is a recognized leader in systems focused on bypass detection and confirmation, and currently markets internationally on four continents. Awesense solutions are in use today helping utilities recover $10’s of millions of dollars every year in losses. For more information, please contact us at [email protected] or www.awesense.com.

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