Technical profile

Functional specifications enabling the low voltage smart meters systems and performance of the relative second generation (2G) smart metering systems in the electricity sector, pursuant to Legislative Decree n. 102 dated 4th July 2014

Resolution 87/2016/R/eel

March 08, 2016

Italian Flag Italian version

With resolution 87/2016/R/eel the Italian Regulatory Authority for Electricity Gas and Water defines the functional specifications enabling low voltage smart meters and performance levels expected for second generation (2G) smart metering systems, with a view to replacing the first generation meters which have reached the end of their expected service life for regulatory purposes.

The decision, pursuant to the provisions of the Legislative Decree transposing the European directive on energy efficiency (Legislative Decree no. 102 dated 4th July 2014) follows an extensive consultation process (DCO 416/2015/R/ eel), technical and in-depth meetings, both with parties from the energy sector as well as from the world of telecommunications, and the technical collaboration with the Autorità per le garanzie nelle comunicazioni (AGCOM).
In particular, the resolution defines the functionalities for the 2G meters and performance of the entire 2G smart metering system, thus adopting a neutral approach and capable to support  the technological evolution in order to make new enabling solutions available. It is provided that the new 2G meters (version 2.0) will be equipped with two communication channels: the first one towards the "electric system" - chain 1 - and will be able to use the Power Line Carrier (PLC) in band A, the communication technology RF 169 or other TLC technologies, and a second one towards user devices - chain 2 - which will have to be able to exploit at least the Power line Carrier (PLC) in band C. For all of the communication solutions the Authority binds  to use standard protocols to guarantee interchangeability when concessions are handed over among distribution operators.  In consideration of the developments of the technologies, in particular for communication, it is also outlined the possibility of an incremental evolution of the same meters towards an advanced version (version 2.1) characterised by an additional communication technology solution (fiber-optic or wireless) to be used by both channels and/or by the possibility of a power limiter which enables the supply of electricity to be interrupted in the case of exceeding the power available without the opening of the switch magneto-thermal breaker, and the consequent necessity to reset by the consumer, usually placed near the meter . In this regard, the resolution provides that during the mandate of the current  AEEGSI Board, the actual availability of standardised technological solutions that enable the incremental functionalities to be defined will be assessed, also with the collaboration of the AGCOM, based on what is outlined in the annex relating to the developmental functionalities of meters, with reference to communication and innovative aspects relating to power limiter (Annex C).
In Annex A the resolution defines 7 functionalities that shall be ensured by the 2G Smart metering systems (Time management; continuous metering  and registries of energy and power; detecting and readings of voltage quality indices; management of contractual information and event logging; on-screen displays; remote acquisition of metering and registries; transmission of meter and registries to devices) and in Annex B the expected performance levels of the system and the related scheduling of the achievement of its full operational capacity, with reference to the services in large-scale smart metering, to the services in remote management, to the services in large-scale reprogramming, to the services in spontaneous reporting, to the IT tools for meter-configuration operations and for remote management operations and to the criteria and scheduling for the 2G Smart Metering systems with two level architecture and concentrators reaching full operational capacity.
These levels have been defined taking into account the expected development of the integrated Information System, the evolution of the regulation of the billing and correction processes, the switching procedures (also considering the progressive conclusion of the standard offer regime ), the introduction of new commercial formulas, also based on prepayment, and in perspective of participating in the market for dispatching services also by the consumers who are connected at low voltage, through appropriate demand response products. Furthermore, the decision assigns to the Comitato Elettrotecnico Italiano (Italian Electrotechnical Committee - CEI) the mandate of defining a standard communication protocol which guarantees the full interoperability of the second generation low voltage electric power meters with the customers' devices and to verify the proposals of the distribution companies and of their associations for the purposes of interchangeability of the 2G smart metering systems in case of concession transfer among distribution operators.
With regard to the definition of the incentive mechanisms for the recognition of the costs related to the replacement of first generation meters with 2G meters and to analyse the expected benefits connected with 2G smart metering systems, another consultation will be carried out. The resolution, according to the European regulation, will now be notified to the European Commission and shall therefore take effect at the end of the stand-still period provided for (3 months from the date when the Commission receives the communication).   

This sheet is for disclosure purposes only; it is not a measure.