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

Sarbajit Roy sroy.mb at gmail.com
Tue Feb 13 10:02:29 EST 2024

Sorry, a correction. I paid US$ 15  (not 150) for consuming 3,600 units.

Sarbajit Roy

On Tue, Feb 13, 2024 at 8:31 PM Sarbajit Roy <sroy.mb at gmail.com> wrote:

> Hi Bruno
> Smart meters were mandated in New Delhi India in 2008 onwards and we had
> the same sort of consumer experience with bills shooting up due to these
> then "made in China" meters and there was tremendous consumer anger.
> 2 important changes were made for domestic consumers - a) Billing would be
> on the basis of Kw-hr (resistive) and not on the basis of KVA-hr
> (reactive). and b) The neutral wiring and meter connection would be through
> a bus-bar system only (no looping of neutrals) and ELCBs were
> made mandatory for preventing earth leakages. That greatly sorted out the
> problem.
> I believe the meter design was also changed to ensure that the Hall
> sensors were inserted into the phase as well as neutral lines.
> Here are some links.
> https://www.derc.gov.in/sites/default/files/Public%20bulletin-5.pdf
> https://www.derc.gov.in/sites/default/files/TechnicalspecificationforMeters_0.pdf
> https://www.derc.gov.in/sites/default/files/Draft-Regulations.pdf
> (for Page 16 of 80)
> Just for your information, In the past 1 year I have paid a grand total of
> about US$ 150 in electricity bills for an annual consumption of about 3,600
> Kw-Hr (3,600 units).
> Sarbajit Roy
> On Tue, Feb 13, 2024 at 10:02 AM _ Bruno W <wbruno at gmail.com> wrote:
>> 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:
>> https://ieeexplore.ieee.org/document/8077940
>> 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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