[FRIAM] Some brands of digital electric meters wildly inaccurate on nonlinear loads, and NM may get them soon!

_ Bruno W wbruno at gmail.com
Mon Feb 12 23:31:38 EST 2024

I'm hoping some Friam member who knows a little about how an electric meter
works will be interested
enough to get this addressed BEFORE PNM spends $ 300+ million giving us all
new meters.

If interested I can send the full paper abstracted here:
There is also a thesis from the same group that gives more info....

The paper makes clear that one of the preferred technologies in electric
meters (the Rogowski coil)
can go haywire when nonlinear loads are present. The smart meters gave
readings up to 500% higher
than the actual usage. The meters PNM has proposed for its entire territory
is the Itron "Gen5" Riva,
which has been deployed in the last 2 years in Denver and parts of Texas.
Sure enough, some customers'
bill have gone way up (3 or 4-fold in one news report), and they have
little recourse: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dpOhTXV59pI&t=20s

I intervened in this PRC proceeding last year, and may be able to get this
info onto the record, and try to
get the PRC to require better testing on nonlinear loads. But I need
someone with some relevant expertise
(can be education or experience) to explain the published findings and
their implications to the PRC in an affidavit by March.
This person would then answer questions from the PRC and possibly PNM via
zoom in a short hearing in late April or May.

I have several reasons for not wanting to see PNM make this huge investment
(and by law they are entitled to a nice
rate of return paid by us, the customers) in a very messed-up technology.
Probably most of us in this group
don't sweat much about our electric bills (actually maybe if ours
quadrupled, we would), but for low-income families, this is
potentially very cruel, since the cost of the meters will be charged with
interest regardless of usage, and energy-saving
appliances typically have nonlinear load usages).

I hope to be at the St. John's gathering Friday am, but feel free to reply
or contact me directly if interested in this.

--William J. Bruno, Ph.D.
wbruno at gmail.com
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