Commercial Embedded Networks

Commercial buildings across Australia have a growing need to measure electricity consumption at a tenant level for accurate and reliable on-billing of consumption.

As deregulation spreads along the Eastern Seaboard this need is being met with the establishment of private embedded electricity networks.

When establishing an embedded network the parent meter of the site will reside with the Local Network Service Provider (LNSP), whilst the tenant meters are separated from the LNSP and converted to orphan meters. Any tenant who chooses not to be part of the embedded network will have a child meter connection to the LNSP.

The benefits of an embedded network arrangement include lower energy costs for the tenants, whilst building owners/managers benefit from an additional revenue stream and a clearer understanding of the consumption of electricity across their site(s).

Embedded networks (also known as inlet metering (SA) or bulk supply metering (QLD)) established at commercial properties must utilise a network operator, registered with the Australian Energy Regulator (AER). The network operator (also known as an Embedded Network Operator (ENO)) undertakes the implementation and day to day management of the network to ensure accurate and timely collection of revenue, as well as managing churn as tenants sign up to the embedded network, or choose to leave and revert to a child metering point.

Common issues with the establishment of an Embedded Network include below expected take up, making the project difficult to justify and causing management issues. However, if managed & marketed correctly sign up rates in excess of 80% are achievable.

Flexible Solutions

Metering Dynamics has provided embedded network metering solutions for the measurement of electricity at sites across Australia. We work directly with Building Managers and Owners as well as the Embedded Network Operators to ensure that the solutions we deliver meet the needs of those who are going to be using and referencing the system on a regular basis.

If required, Metering Dynamics will also work directly with switchboard manufacturers to integrate our metering solutions into the switchboard prior to delivery to site, to reduce the amount of onsite work required.

From simple individual metering installations to complex multi meter, multi tenant, multi output networked solutions; Metering Dynamics has the flexibility to provide a solution that fits most scenarios.

One such example involved the installation of several hundred tenant meters, replacing existing meters as part of a retro fit project, as well as adding new metering points as part of an expansion. These meters formed an embedded network which had to supply data to a billing agent, who was previously face reading the meters.

In addition the new system supplies meter register information to the sites building management system for management and control purposes. The device used to create this network is called a ‘SmartHub’ and enables multiple meters on a switchboard to be connected on a network with data feeding to a central modem as well as supplying a MODBUS data feed.

Managed over several stages this installation now delivers a daily feed of next day interval data to several parties, for billing and information analysis, as well as an on demand real time data feed to the onsite BMS system.