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Smart Grid Consulting

Product & Services Offerings

The American Reinvestment and Recovery Act and the growing interest in energy conservation and environmental sustainability are driving the need for Advanced Metering Infrastructure (AMI), Home Area Networks (HAN), Demand Response (DR), and enhanced T&D automation approaches.  Our Smart Grid Practice is leading the way by offering utilities and energy market participants a comprehensive and systematic approach to achieving their Smart Grid vision. Our practice expertise spans the entire Smart Grid process life cycle from Business Case and Smart Grid Roadmap Development, Requirements Definition, RFP Preparation and Evaluation, Implementation Planning, and Project Management.  Our highly experienced professionals provide planning, design, and implementation oversight for a full spectrum of Smart Grid systems, components, and applications.

·         AMI communication networks (RF mesh, BPL, RF point to multipoint, IP over Cellular, etc.).

·         HAN technologies and Demand Response program management.

·         Meter Event Management and Complex Event Processing.

·         Outage Management Smart Grid application integration.

·         AMI-enabled meter to cash functionality.

·         EMS, DMS, and Distribution Automation specifications and implementation support.

·         AMI/DMS/WMS integration support.

Yanco Associates has broad experience in implementing Meter Data Management Solutions and managing successful projects through all phases of the system development lifecycle.  Additionally, we offer deep industry knowledge and experience in delivering software solutions that work and meet your business requirements.

Yanco Associates provides a full suite of services to help clients maximize the benefits of these complementary and enabling Smart Grid technologies by assisting utilities throughout the Smart Grid implementation lifecycle.

·         Project Management.

·         Visioning and strategic planning.

·         Regulatory strategy and support.

·         Business case development and support.

·         Requirements specification.

·         Business structure options and business case development.

·         Technology assessment.

·         Development of business process models enabled by smart metering and MDM.

·         Competitive solicitation/RFP development and administration.

·         Technology and vendor selection and negotiations.

·         Enterprise architecture design and solution implementation roadmap.

·         Change management.

·         Program management.

Advance Metering Infrastructure

Yanco Associates has the real-world experience, in-depth insights, and practical experience needed to confidently transform a utility's Smart Metering vision into reality.  Smart Metering is one of the prominent topics of today’s utility industry, and is more than simply replacing dumb meters with automated or smart meters and generating better customer billing.

Smart Metering (also known as Advanced Metering Infrastructure or AMI) builds on Automated Meter Reading (AMR) to enable customers to get current information about consumption, enable utilities to detect unusual consumption patterns, and allow the utility to remotely connect and disconnect customers. Smart metering is a pivotal information source that drives enterprise efficiencies and benefits throughout the distribution business.  It also provides the underpinnings for additional smart grid technologies and the "Utility of the Future."

Yanco Associates offers extensive experience in smart metering consulting and systems integration.  We provide a full suite of services to help our clients maximize the benefits of smart metering and implement a key technology for the other Smart Grid components.

Meter Data Management Systems

Yanco Associates’ Smart Grid team has hands-on experience and real-world knowledge implementing MDMS solutions.  A Meter Data Management System (MDMS) collects and translates meter data into information that can be used by the various utility applications such as billing, outage management, GIS, and work management.  The MDMS helps utilities meet the challenges of processing and managing large quantities of meter data.

MDMS provides a single repository for this data with a variety of analysis capabilities to facilitate the integration with other utility information systems.  MDMS is crucial to achieving the enterprise benefits of smart metering, reduces the ongoing operation and support costs for IT, and forms a foundational component of a smart grid implementation.  As a foundational component, MDMS is best considered in conjunction with the smart metering investment and implemented early in the smart metering project.

The MDMS can be thought of as a channel between the data from smart metering and the numerous IT systems that utilize metered data.  MDMS hides the complexity and quantities of data from multiple metering systems. It organizes that data into a single data repository.  An MDMS then supplies that data in the single repository to multiple applications such as billing, forecasting, customer service, system operation and maintenance.

Demand Response

Yanco Associates understands and has worked with many utilities in the area of demand response.  Our staff has been involved in load control, load management, and demand side management long before dynamic pricing was instituted and "demand response" became an industry-wide term.

By allowing the utility customer to make decisions on reductions in their energy use, demand response (DR) can lead to a deferment of a utility's investment in generation.  Demand response includes the technologies and pricing structures that encourage consumers to reduce their demand, particularly during peak-load periods.  DR technologies include smart thermostats and in-home devices displaying pricing signals and critical price alerts, and endpoint load management devices such as air conditioning cycling switches. The DR pricing structures include critical-peak pricing and real-time pricing, as well as traditional time-of-use and interruptible rates.

The benefits of implementing DR include a reduction in customer energy usage, increased system reliability, and infrastructure deferral or optimization.  There are increasing synergies and joint business benefits between DR and smart metering initiatives.  For example, utilities can leverage smart metering communication infrastructures for DR program execution (WAN, LAN, the evolving HAN, and Smart Grid). 

Demand response can be extended from large industrial customers to a substantial portion of the system load in a Smart Grid.  During times of peak demand, Smart Grid connected air conditioning, pool pumps, and other appliances could receive a digital message from the utility requesting curtailment of power usage.  As intermittent renewable power sources grow, DR may become increasingly important to the effective management of the electric grid.  For example, in a region heavily reliant on wind, DR can absorb excess power (e.g., recharging vehicle batteries).  Likewise DR can shed demand when the wind becomes insufficient.  DR is also a key part of the solution for meeting future energy requirements and reducing carbon emissions.

Project Management

One of our key strengths is project management.  We focus on achieving a high quality, timely delivery but we also operate with a degree of pragmatism stemming from our extensive experience that we believe sets us apart.  Given our deep industry and solution knowledge, we tend to have a very hands-on project management approach, avoiding the pitfalls of content-free project management.  Our project management efforts typically include the following focus areas.

·         Project planning and management.

·         Scope management.

·         Budget tracking.

·         Risk mitigation.

·         Vendor management.

·         Status reporting.

·         Issues management.

Business Process Design

We have a deep understanding of the end-to-end business capabilities required in today’s utilities.  We have worked on many business design projects to improve end-to-end business capabilities across the front, mid, and back office, as well as more focused engagements developing internal policies and detailed procedures.

·         Business process review and design.

·         Risk policy review and development.

·         Controls framework establishment.

Change Management

Whether introducing new technologies, implementing new strategic direction, adapting to a new regulatory environment, introducing process improvements, embarking on cultural change, or facing fundamental business transformation through an acquisition or divestiture, our clients are constantly having to adapt to change.  Our objectives for addressing this “change” include: assessing the change landscape, providing coordinated direction and clarity to the change process, anticipating impacts, and promoting acceptance within the organization.  These objectives are achieved through the following activities.

·         Change planning and readiness assessment.

·         Stakeholder assessment.

·         Impact analysis.

·         Training development and delivery.

·         Performance management.

·         Communication planning and execution.


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Copyright © 2009 Yanco Associates
Last modified: 09/21/09