In January 2017, Carbon Co-Op started installing smart meter extension (SMX) devices within the Nobel Grid project. The first building SMX is installed at is a business centre forming part of the Lancaster Cohousing development.
The whole development is supplied by a private microgrid connected to the wider electricity grid via its own substation and as such provides an excellent test bed for Nobel Grid. The co-operative tenants are interested in maximising the use of generated electricity on site and avoiding peak demand charges in order to maximise income from their renewable assets but are also keen to investigate the supply of excess clean renewable energy to other local users connected on the local public electricity grid.
A low-cost extended smart meter extension (SMX) for the prosumers is one of four different elements newly developed in the project. It serves as a pivot point for data transmission, handles wide-area networks access to the prosumer’s local area components, serves as a firewall for the prosumer, and allows for extension with third-party smart home applications.