Idaho Power Company’s Smart Grid Program includes customer systems, advanced metering infrastructure (AMI), distribution automation, and advanced monitoring equipment for the transmission system. The AMI and customer systems portions provide 475,000 smart meters to nearly all of Idaho Power Company’s (IPC) residential and commercial customers. Enhanced billing and on-line energy monitoring systems provide detailed energy use information to help customers better manage their consumption and bills. Smart meters enable IPC to increase its offering of existing time-of-use rates aimed at lowering customer electricity costs in addition to lowering peak load. Peak load is also managed through direct load control devices on participating customers’ irrigation systems. IPC is implementing automated feeder switches in Pocatello, Idaho, to improve the reliability of its distribution system. To improve transmission system visibility, IPC is installing phasor measurement units, which increase monitoring capabilities and improve reliability. Advanced applications include enhanced forecasting of renewable generation and short-term demand enabling improved load and generation balancing as renewable power supplies are added to the system.
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