Fortis BC picks Xylem for smart gas meter project

  • June 1, 2021
  • Steve Rogerson

Canadian utility Fortis BC Energy has selected New York-based Xylem to deploy a network of a million smart gas meters to help increase safety and reliability.

The 20-year technology and services agreement will see water and resource management technology company Xylem working with Fortis BC in British Columbia to deploy a Sensus smart gas meter network.

Fortis BC serves more than a million natural gas users across 135 communities in Canada’s westernmost province.

Through its gas meters project, Fortis BC will modernise its metering infrastructure and enhance the resilience of its gas system. Pending regulatory approval, the project will provide the ability to monitor and manage its system, and offer additional safety features.

Fortis BC plans to deploy the Sensus Flexnet communication network and approximately one million Sonix IQ ultrasonic, residential gas meters. The Flexnet system will provide the utility secure, reliable, near real-time customer usage data from meters and sensors over an encrypted wireless network. Sonix IQ goes beyond precise, ultrasonic measurement to include smart-sensing safety features such as remote shutoff, continuous health checks on pressure and temperature, and theft and tamper detection.

“Fortis BC exemplifies an innovative utility widening its view of what’s possible from advanced metering technology,” said Colin Sabol, senior vice president at Xylem. “They’re making their system smarter, safer and more sustainable while empowering their customers to better understand and track energy usage. We’re proud to help Fortis BC with this important work.”

The 20-year agreement includes managed services and software-as-a-service (SaaS), which allows Xylem to maintain and perform upgrades so the utility can focus on providing safe, reliable energy.

Subject to regulatory approval and other conditions, meter deployment should begin in 2023.

Xylem has more than 16,000 employees who delivered revenue of $4.88bn in 2020. It is helping communities in 150 countries become water-secure. Its Sensus brand provides remotely managed products that deliver data for investor-owned utilities, cooperatives and municipalities. Its smart devices connect with various communication technologies to help users make timely decisions that optimise electric, gas and water systems.