South Staffs Water and SmartReach in trial to connect hard to reach meters

Posted: Tuesday 16th July 2013

Trial of SmartReach’s long-range radio communications solution for up to 1,000 smart water meters in Kinver.

SmartReach, a collaboration of Arqiva, BT, BAE Systems Detica and Sensus, together with South Staffs Water, have announced a new trial to connect up to 1,000 smart water meters in Kinver, South Staffordshire. Many of these meters are in underground chambers, under metal lids, creating a challenge for most communications technologies.

Smart water meters provide much greater visibility of the use of water by individual households. Reliable, continuously available smart meter data can help identify unusual consumption patterns that indicate leaks on people’s property. It can also support improved management and reduction of leaks across the water network, as well as providing valuable data to optimise future network investments.

Colin Wayper, Network Director, South Staffs Water, commented, “We selected the long-range radio communications solution from SmartReach because it is proven to connect to smart meters in the demanding British environment, even in locations where other communications technologies tend to suffer from patchy or unreliable coverage. The SmartReach solution also offers long term flexibility, with the potential to cover water networks as well as the metering of homes.”

Sean Weir, Programme Director, SmartReach added, “Smart water and energy metering has the potential to deliver billions of pounds worth of energy, water and operational efficiency savings for utilities and their customers. Achieving these benefits depends on proven, reliable smart metering communications technology. We’ve already demonstrated that our long-range radio solution connects to over 99% of energy and water smart meters with a single installation visit. We are looking forward to building on this success by delivering a highly reliable service for South Staffs Water and its customers.”

SmartReach’s trials ( have proven the suitability of its solution to connect first time to smart meters wherever they are across Great Britain. The technology behind SmartReach has also been widely deployed in the US, with 15 million smart meter and grid end points using Sensus’ long-range radio technology.

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