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Dickson Electric System is finalizing installation of a Sensus FlexNet utility network and iCon A electric meters with remote disconnect for its more than 30,000 residential and commercial customers across a five-county service territory southwest of Nashville, Tenn.

Following more than 100 years of analog meter service, Dickson Electric chose to implement the Sensus advanced metering infrastructure system in 2011 to increase reliability, accelerate response rates and provide the foundation for future energy initiatives, including distribution automation, SCADA and direct load control. The meter automation project began in earnest in early 2012 and is expected to be completed in the fall, accounting for eight months in total installation time.

"We chose to implement the Sensus technology because it presented us with the best platform from which to continue updating and improving our system,” says Darrell Gillespie, general manager of Dickson Electric. “The licensed spectrum, point-to-multipoint network requires minimal maintenance and was an ideal choice for our rural and diverse terrain.”

In addition to meter automation, Dickson Electric - in conjunction with the Tennessee Valley Authority - plans to build upon this system with a distribution automation pilot program that will be centered on voltage reduction and peak load management. Sensus says Dickson is able to execute advanced applications by virtue of the FlexNet’s fast data throughput speed and a recently installed fiber optic backhaul network.

The FlexNet system, which is based on open standards, will also provide future capabilities for time of use reporting and direct load control, the company adds. The updated system comprises six base stations and antennae broadcasting to Dickson, Hickman, Cheatham, Houston and Montgomery counties.



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