Liberty Lake, WA, U.S.A. --- (METERING.COM) --- August 20, 2010 - The natural gas distribution companies of Black Hills Utility Holdings Inc. located in Iowa, Nebraska, Kansas and Colorado, have begun deploying 100G Datalogging gas ERT® modules from Itron, the company has announced.

The deployment schedule will provide Black Hills Energy the opportunity to fully use the latest Itron technologies and system capabilities.

The 100G Datalogging gas ERT module, part of the Itron ChoiceConnect™ suite of data collection systems, will allow Black Hills Energy to collect daily or hourly customer meter data, offering increased operational efficiency and enhanced levels of customer service through additional accuracy and timeliness of information. Access to frequent meter data will facilitate improvements in bill reconciliations and reduce truck rolls for off-cycle reads.

“We are excited about the new technologies and capabilities,” said Terry Perkins, director of customer account services and process improvements at Black Hills Energy. “The ability to collect advanced meter data will offer us a wide range of operational improvements to better serve our customers today and into the future. We also anticipate additional benefits such as greater accuracy in natural gas load forecasting.”

With ChoiceConnect, Black Hills Energy will be able to use Itron’s drive-by system to collect 40 days of daily reads. The ability to collect data logging with a mobile or fixed network system enables Black Hills Energy to deploy a hybrid collection system or migrate between systems, depending on evolving business needs.

Black Hills Utility Holdings, Inc., through its local distribution companies, provides natural gas service to more than 520,000 customers in Iowa, Nebraska, Kansas and Colorado.