TVA gets load control demo results


A recent Tennessee Valley Authority direct load control demonstration project for peak load reduction has revealed interesting results.

An 83-degree day in September provided the backdrop for the test, which included 75 residential pilot participants utilizing Consert's Virtual Peak Plant technology deployed by Rockwood Electric Utility, one of several distributors chosen by TVA to participate in the pilot.

The Consert load management solution is based on real-time, wireless technology that allows participants to conserve energy using a web-based, home area network. Results showed an average peak load reduction of 2 kW per participant by managing air conditioners, water heaters and pool pumps. REU employed a dual meter base for direct comparison of the Consert meter to the existing meter.

REU plans to deploy Consert's intelligent energy management solution on approximately 1,300 residential and light commercial installations in 2013 -- or 10 percent of its customers. When fully implemented, significant demand reduction savings are expected. Consert's Stand Alone Gateway will enable REU to use the existing meters and reduce installation costs.

"We found the results to be very positive," said REU General Manager Kendall Bear, "and expect Consert's technology to reduce wholesale power costs from TVA, and ultimately help our customers reduce their energy bill."

Plans are also in motion for TVA to partner with Dickson Electric System on a distribution automation pilot program for voltage reduction and peak load management.

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