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Customer survey will help to fine-tune new off-market billing solution ‘bundle’

by Murray Hogarth
posted on Thursday, September 6th, 2018

The Wattwatchers team is putting the finishing touches to our latest addition to the product line-up, a customised solution for off-market revenue billing of solar Power Purchase Agreements (PPAs), local microgrids and embedded networks.

To assist, we are inviting input from potential customers via a brief online survey.

TAKE THE SURVEY (although first you can read on to get a bit more context).

We’ve been seeing a growing boom in the installation of investor-funded rooftop solar systems, that are paid off over subsequent years through PPAs.

This in turn has highlighted a gap in the marketplace for suitable energy meters.

What’s required is an all-in-one metering solution that can simultaneously:

  • Support monitoring of solar system production and performance
  • Provide revenue-grade billing data
  • Communicate over the air, and
  • Ideally also allow remote control at circuit-level as well.

All of this has led Wattwatchers to our new ‘Auditor 6M+One’ product line, for which we are now inviting input from potential customers and taking pre-release orders.

So what is it?

This two-meters-in-a-bundle solution combines the benefits of the Wattwatchers multi-channel cellular-communicating Auditor 6M with a secondary digital meter that is pattern-approved in Australia, through the National Measurement Institute (NMI), for use in the trade of electricity.

Each of the meters comes in a compact, DIN-mounted form factor, making the total package substantially smaller than traditional utility-style smart meters, but with significantly greater functionality embedded in the ‘combo’. The conventional solution consists of two full-scale smart meters which takes more than 8 times as much space on the switchboard, takes longer to install, costs more up-front and more to operate.

The first-generation examples of the cellular Auditor 6M+One bundles are being scheduled for delivery by December 2018. These will feature:

Single-phase version – a single-phase, non-communicating, NMI pattern-approved meter (two DIN-units wide) that transmits its data to the cloud through the real-time, cellular-communicating Wattwatchers Auditor 6M using ModBus (cable connection between the two devices). This allows up to six channels of energy monitoring plus the billing data channel.

Three-phase version – a three-phase, non-communicating, NMI pattern-approved meter (six DIN-units wide), in a bundle with the Auditor 6M which can accurately monitor two three-phase circuits using the Wattwatchers device plus billing-compliant data for three phases from the secondary meter.

ModBus-enabled switching units that can remotely control two circuit-based loads will be added in 2019.

Use cases include:

  • Solar PPAs for commercial and residential PV systems
  • Behind-the-utility-meter microgrids and embedded networks

Wattwatchers CEO Gavin Dietz says:

‘This bundled solution offers the best of both worlds, with real-time remote monitoring and off-market billing data from the one installation.

‘That’s a compelling offer for the fast-growing service sector enabling PPAs, for both residential and commercial sites, and the emerging potential growth area for microgrids and embedded networks behind-the-gate-meters.

‘In the Wattwatchers view of the future, the market-facing and consumer-facing aspects of electricity metering, monitoring and management will increasingly merge together, and Wattwatchers will be a leading player in this rapidly evolving technology world for energy.

‘Wattwatchers will continue to approach the traditional energy market differently, innovating, disrupting and putting both our partners and energy consumers front and centre.  This is just the first step in what we have planned, and allows for IT investment to be made efficiently in the first instance for our entire energy ecosystem.’


NOTE: The Auditor 6M+One is not designed to operate as an on-grid billing meter for standard energy retailer services in the competitive market, including for reconciliation with the market (i.e. the National Electricity Market or the Wholesale Energy Market of Western Australia).