Conservation Matters April 2015

The Texas Land, Water and Wildlife Connection

AMI water utilities workshops coming to cities across Texas

AMI water utilities workshops coming to cities across Texas

The Texas Water Resources Institute (TWRI), Texas A&M Engineering and Johnson Controls Inc. are hosting advanced metering infrastructure (AMI) system workshops for water utilities in cities throughout Texas in coming months.

The first four workshops will be held in May:

  • San Marcos: May 6, Meadows Center for Water and the Environment, 601 University Drive
  • Waco: May 7, city of Waco water office, 425 Franklin Ave.
  • Weslaco: May 13, AgriLife Center, 2415 E Hwy. 83.
  • Robstown and Corpus Christi: May 14, Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service office, 710 E. Main Ave., Suite 1, Robstown.

All of the workshops are free and from 10 a.m.–2 p.m. Participants should preregister for the workshops at nrt.tamu.edu/ami, and lunch will be provided to those who preregister. Seating is limited to 45 people.

Dr. Allen Berthold, TWRI research scientist, said the trainings are open to municipal employees interested in learning more about various aspects of AMI system technology. The technology uses water meters to wirelessly transmit hourly household water usage information to water utilities and then potentially to water users through a customer website.

“Efficient household water use is crucial to meeting Texas’ future water demands,” Berthold said. “Using AMI system technology can help water utilities be more efficient by detecting and managing leaks and encouraging water conservation by residents.”

Craig Hannah, engineering manager for Johnson Controls’ municipal utility solutions team, said training topics include AMI system components, transmitting options, network topology, mobile automatic meter reading versus fixed-base AMI, line-of-sight communications, comparisons of AMI systems for water-only utilities, health and privacy concerns, installing AMI, a business case and lessons learned.

“The trainings will provide utilities considering the adoption of an AMI system with different viewpoints and key factors that they should consider,” Hannah said.

“Participating in this training is a great opportunity to not only learn about various topics related to AMI systems, but also to network with other utilities and gain some insight into their key considerations and lessons they have learned thus far,” Berthold said.

Berthold will also present information on a current AMI technology research project of Texas A&M AgriLife Research, Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service, TWRI and Texas A&M Engineering.

“This project aims to measure changes in water consumption as a result of making hourly water use available to residents,” he said.

The full schedule of all ten upcoming workshops, training details and registration are available at nrt.tamu.edu/ami. Contact Berthold at 979.845.2028 or taberthold@ag.tamu.edu for more information.

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