Energy company Drax Group is working with the Data Communications Company (DCC), smart meter manufacturer EDMI and software company Utiligroup to develop new smart meters for business customers.
The organisations say polyphase SMETS 2 smart meters, which will use the same software used by the millions of single-phase smart meters installed in homes and small businesses across the UK, will give large industrial and commercial businesses greater control of their energy use.
The meters will be field-tested with selected Drax business customers, such as utilities and large NHS Trusts, in the autumn.
This deployment stage follows months of development and testing, which was needed to enable the newest smart meters to be installed at businesses with larger and more complex electricity supplies, such as schools or large commercial premises – many of these sites have been previously unable to benefit from the smartest technologies.
The project has included establishing a new polyphase smart meter testing lab within the DCC’s Manchester facility, which can test 2,400 smart meters simultaneously, as well as monitor the install and operation of every smart meter across the country.
Paul Sheffield, Managing Director of Drax’s customers business, said: “We’re confident that this new smart meter technology is going to be a game-changer for thousands of our larger customers.
“This technology will enable them to enjoy greater flexibility and control over their electricity use, making them more sustainable, which will be good for both the environment and their bottom line.”