Big Ideas from a Technology Leader
The objective of Itron Idea Labs is to discover new opportunities for effective energy and water management and explore possibilities in new markets utilizing Itron Riva™ technology. Itron Idea Labs accelerates innovation by engaging with our customers early and often and delivering new and strategic solutions at a transformative pace.
The Itron Idea Labs team is made up of experienced entrepreneurs and engineers across the globe who want to make a difference in energy and water resourcefulness. Our team extends Itron's expansive knowledge—in utility operations, technologies and services—to uncover innovative solutions to challenges facing utilities and smart cities. We work closely with Itron's worldwide customer base to confirm a project's validity and direction, quickly bringing new ideas and new technology to the market.
We then collaborate and partner with established companies—as well as start-ups—to bring best-of-breed thinking and capabilities to a project. Projects that are proven as business opportunities are transitioned into Itron's core business for delivery to you, our customers, so you can solve new challenges in new ways.
Here are a few examples of Itron Idea Labs' projects:
Solar Asset Management
The Itron Solar Gate communication gateway correlates solar production and premise consumption data, and can allocate how extra capacity is utilized—all while providing granular data on the health of the solar installation relative to its surrounding environmental variables. This benefits solar leasing companies, local electricity utilities and the consumer to understand how solar generation is optimized. Learn More
The Itron Idea Labs streetlight project is looking beyond simple lighting control capabilities by unlocking how streetlights can play a significant role in smart cities programs, including climate action plans, urban canopy management, and transportation and pedestrian optimization.
Natural gas is abundant, relatively inexpensive and cleaner than most other fuel sources, yet is a highly volatile fuel. Safe delivery of gas is paramount. Itron Idea Labs is working on solutions that not only monitor for unsafe conditions, but also trigger control events to shut off gas flow to help in the prevention of crises.
Electrical Phase Identification
Electric power is distributed in three phases with a specific phase going to each meter. Outages and other events can cause the different phases to be misaligned with their respective meters. This can lead to inaccurate data, outage management issues, load imbalances, wasted crew time and neutral current errors. Itron Idea Labs is developing software that accurately identifies a meter’s phase without the need for expensive hardware or field crews.
Working in a fast-to-fail style, the Itron Idea Labs team works with customers, builds minimum viable prototypes, ascertains the market applicability and either pivots to better align with customer needs or moves on to the next project. All at an accelerated pace and without fear of failure.
We are always evaluating the bottom line, asking some simple questions: is the business model real and is it addressing a need? If not, what did we learn from the experience and where do we go now?
Achieve a Balanced Grid
Who is Interested in Itron Idea Labs?
Itron Idea Labs benefits customers by incubating new and innovative solutions to business challenges. Our customers can play a pivotal role in the development of those new solutions by working with Itron Idea Labs in the early stages of a project's conception, providing input into feature sets and outcomes to meet specific needs. Because of accelerated development cycles, customers realize a faster time to market for new solutions that address their challenges.
Itron Idea Labs realizes that collaborating with other companies is critical to its success, seeking best-of-breed capabilities in a project's development. Company collaborations assist in the creation of new business opportunities to solve pressing energy and water challenges. Itron Idea Labs is building a growing partner ecosystem with a wide range of companies.
With the never-ending need for business growth, Itron Idea Labs provides Itron with the opportunity to create new business models in existing core energy and water markets and enter new markets for new revenue opportunities. The agile approach used at Itron Idea Labs optimizes capital and resources to reduce new market entry risks.
Want to learn more about Itron Idea Labs? Send your questions to ItronIdeaLabs@itron.com.