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After BESCOM, CESC plans to install smart electric meters
The Corporation hopes it will reduce electricity loss to less than 5 per cent in the next five years and save `50 to 100 crore per year
Mysuru: Chamundeshwari Electricity Supply Corporation (CESC), which is planning to use information technology to reduce electricity leakage and loss along with quality electricity supply, is thinking of installing 'automatic smart meters'. In collaboration with private companies, an ambitious project to detect and prevent electricity theft by installing smart meters will be implemented. If this project is successful, it will reduce electricity loss to less than 5 per cent in the next five years and save Rs. 50 to 100 crore per year. The work pressure of the vigilance team can be reduced.
To prevent electricity theft in urban and rural areas, the Vigilance Force conducts frequent raids and arrests the electricity thieves and sends them to jail, but the leakages and losses are not completely prevented. Thus the CESC is losing the annual estimate of Rs 100 to 150 crore. When every time a hike in electricity rates is proposed, there is a demand to prevent leakages and distribution losses, so many projects have been undertaken with some success. As a result, the rate of distribution loss which was 13.20 per cent in 2017 has decreased year by year and has come to 9.06 per cent in 2022-23.
By installing smart meters for home use, commercial use, transformer, feeder lanes, maintenance can be done sitting down using information technology. If the Transformers start to heat up suddenly, there will be a prediction of unauthorized connection of bore wells. Also, the advanced alarm system in Transformers transmits information. This will reveal the exact reason why the transformers go bad and heat up. Then it will be easy to manage it through the monitoring system at the central office.
For example, in Mysuru city, there is an automatic switch on and switch off system for street lights, which saves Rs 6 crore per month and nearly 75 crore per annum. Losses and leakages can be prevented by installing a smart meter as the electricity bill remains unchanged.
The CESC would have to spend Rs 1800 crore for installing smart meters to all its consumers in Mysuru, Kodagu, Chamarajanagara and Mandya districts. It will be difficult for the corporation to meet such a huge amount. If the state government decides to grant funding for this project, all the Escoms to be given grants. . Therefore, the respective Escoms have to decide and implement the plan.
Each smart electric meter costs Rs 8,000 and the union government would provide subsidy of Rs 900 per meter, the remaining Rs 7100 should be borne by Escoms. Since it is impossible to get this amount from the customer and install the meter, a plan has been devised to allow the maintenance for the next five years if the scheme is implemented through private companies and they show that they have maintained it for five years without any loss.
CESC managing director Jayavibhava Swamy said that power loss cannot be prevented by Corporation alone. For that, losses can be avoided if automatic smart meter is installed and maintained according to the changed time. Talks have been held with several companies regarding the implementation of this project in partnership with private companies.