Raleigh, NC, U.S.A. --- (METERING.COM) --- September 15, 2010 - The Navajo Tribal Utility Authority (NTUA), a non-profit enterprise that supplies water, natural gas, wastewater and solar power services to the Navajo Nation and neighboring communities, is to deploy Elster’s EnergyAxis® advanced metering infrastructure (AMI) smart grid solution.  

The project will be funded from the U.S. Department of Energy Smart Grid Investment Grant award of almost $5 million and similar matching NTUA funding.

The NTUA will use the EnergyAxis solution to bring improved customer service and reliability and more accurate billing to the 26,000 square-mile Navajo Nation, which spans northeastern Arizona, northwestern New Mexico and southeastern Utah. NTUA serves more than 50,000 electric customers, 34,000 water customers, 13,000 wastewater customers and 7,800 natural gas customers, the majority of whom will be receiving the EnergyAxis smart meters as part of this deployment.

The two-way EnergyAxis communication system will enable NTUA to conduct remote data collection and connect/disconnect with substantially reduced personnel field visits and vehicle emissions, and will offer broad improvements to its outage response and management process. The NTUA also will gain more accurate and efficient billing, allowing it to eliminate its current billing method.

For the NTUA deployment, advanced router radios operating in a private 900 MHz spectrum are being used with hardened routers for gatekeeper communication and data gathering across the extremely rural and widespread service territory.

In addition, OSIsoft, LLC has been selected to provide its OSIsoft MDUS product for meter data capture and historical repository storage sent from the EnergyAxis head-end. OSIsoft will also perform meter data integration to SAP for Utilities, extending back office billing processes and operational efficiencies.

The NTUA deployment will be Elster’s second in the U.S. to utilize a single AMI head-end system and smart meters across electric, gas and water services.