Elster Electricity, LLC announces that the Alaska Village Electric Cooperative, Inc. (AVEC) was awarded the “2005 AMR Project of the Year” by Utility Automation and Engineering T&D magazine, a PennWell Corporation publication, for their deployment of Elster’s EnergyAxis System in the summer of 2005.Award winners were selected based on the size and scope of the project, level of innovation used, benefits to the utility, its customers and the power industry as a whole, and clarity of the written project description.

Meera Kohler, president and CEO of AVEC said, “Elster’s EnergyAxis System is our long-sought answer to AMR in the genuine last frontier of the United States. Deploying the system in five of our 52 villages last summer was one of the easiest installations we could have imagined. The system has already demonstrated that it is robust, tolerant of extreme cold, and ready to face all challenges. We look forward to extending the system throughout our service area and bringing this sophisticated, yet simple, technology to our communities.”

“We are pleased that the industry is recognizing our system and we are honored that AVEC was selected for this award,” stated Sharon Allan, chief knowledge officer of Elster Electricity. “The EnergyAxis System is designed to help utilities better serve their customers and position their companies to meet the smart metering language of the 2005 Energy Policy Act (EPACT).”

According to Steve Brown, editor in chief of Utility Automation and Engineering T&D, “With the AVEC project, we felt that there was a definite benefit to the utility and its customers. Reading hard-to-reach meters has always been one of the primary benefits of AMR, and you won’t find too many utilities with harder-to-read meters than what AVEC has. This was a textbook example of a utility improving its operations through the use of technology. The large geographic area covered was another factor in selecting AVEC for this award. We also felt that this was a very unique project based on the environment, geography, and challenging weather conditions."