Hello,

We noticed you're browsing in private or incognito mode.

To continue reading this article, please exit incognito mode or log in.

Not an Insider? Subscribe now for unlimited access to online articles.

Martin LaMonica

A View from Martin LaMonica

Silver Spring Networks Liberates Smart Meter Data

Smart meters haven’t lived up to their potential in making the grid more efficient. A software service to analyze meter data is one small step forward.

  • August 3, 2012

Smart meters throw off piles of information but only a small segment of utility employees have access to it. Software from smart grid company Silver Spring Networks is designed to spread it around.

Silver Spring Networks gets meter data out of the network operations center and into the hands of business analysts. Credit: Silver Spring Networks

The Redwood City, California-based company this week released SilverLink Cloud Services, a set of applications geared at business analysts or managers trying to get a better picture of how their grid operates. The data can be used to, for example, monitor how voltage fluctuates or to create reports to meet regulations, explained Anil Gadre, executive vice president of products.

Some utilities have invested millions of dollars in smart meter programs to automate meter reading closely and monitor power usage to better understand changes in load. Meters can also make it easier to spot outages and remotely connect or disconnect customers.

Beyond those operational efficiencies, there’s room to sift through that data to make business decisions, much the way corporations in other industries create data warehouses to analyze transactional data to understand consumer buying or financial trends. “(Utilities) are done in most cases with their core meter related deployment. Now they’re saying, what else can I do with it?” said Gadre, a former Sun Microsystems executive.

Silver Spring Networks makes the networking equipment for sending meter information back to utilities, one of many companies trying to marry information technology with the power sector. Utilities have a reputation for being relatively slow adopters of new technology, even enterprise software systems. By using data analysis offerings like these, utilities could run more efficiently and get more value from their smart meter investments

Want to go ad free? No ad blockers needed.

Become an Insider
Already an Insider? Log in.
More from Sustainable Energy

Can we sustainably provide food, water, and energy to a growing population during a climate crisis?

Want more award-winning journalism? Subscribe and become an Insider.
  • Insider Plus {! insider.prices.plus !}* Best Value

    {! insider.display.menuOptionsLabel !}

    Everything included in Insider Basic, plus the digital magazine, extensive archive, ad-free web experience, and discounts to partner offerings and MIT Technology Review events.

    See details+

    Print + Digital Magazine (6 bi-monthly issues)

    Unlimited online access including all articles, multimedia, and more

    The Download newsletter with top tech stories delivered daily to your inbox

    Technology Review PDF magazine archive, including articles, images, and covers dating back to 1899

    10% Discount to MIT Technology Review events and MIT Press

    Ad-free website experience

  • Insider Basic {! insider.prices.basic !}*

    {! insider.display.menuOptionsLabel !}

    Six issues of our award winning print magazine, unlimited online access plus The Download with the top tech stories delivered daily to your inbox.

    See details+

    Print Magazine (6 bi-monthly issues)

    Unlimited online access including all articles, multimedia, and more

    The Download newsletter with top tech stories delivered daily to your inbox

  • Insider Online Only {! insider.prices.online !}*

    {! insider.display.menuOptionsLabel !}

    Unlimited online access including articles and video, plus The Download with the top tech stories delivered daily to your inbox.

    See details+

    Unlimited online access including all articles, multimedia, and more

    The Download newsletter with top tech stories delivered daily to your inbox

/3
You've read of three free articles this month. for unlimited online access. You've read of three free articles this month. for unlimited online access. This is your last free article this month. for unlimited online access. You've read all your free articles this month. for unlimited online access. You've read of three free articles this month. for more, or for unlimited online access. for two more free articles, or for unlimited online access.