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Press Release

Itron Helps Global Utilities Extend Life of Distribution Transformers

Solution helps prevent service disruptions while extending asset life

LIBERTY LAKE, Wash. — Nov. 14, 2016 — Itron, Inc. (NASDAQ: ITRI), a world-leading technology and services company dedicated to the resourceful use of energy and water, announced today the availability of a new solution to monitor distribution transformers. The offering combines Itron’s advanced Distribution Transformer Monitoring (DTM) and data collection technology with its analytics capabilities to provide accurate monitoring and more effective lifecycle management of these critical assets. This solution is available to distribution utilities in EMEA, Latin America and Asia Pacific regions.

Low-voltage transformers, which are ubiquitous across utility distribution networks, provide a critical link in the power grid by “stepping down” the voltage used in the distribution lines to the level used by customers. They also represent a significant area of capital investment for distribution utilities. Today, increasingly volatile loads caused by more distributed energy resources feeding power to the grid are causing unbalanced loads and overloading of aging transformers, accelerating their lifecycle and increasing the frequency of failures. Ensuring these assets are properly maintained and “right-sized” to handle these conditions is critical to optimizing reliability and capital expenditures on transformers.

Itron’s DTM solution provides timely and detailed visibility into the operational state of distribution transformers, enabling utilities to manage transformer performance and lifecycle based on actual operational conditions rather than using estimates and statistical modeling. This approach to transformer management can deliver a wide range of value to utilities, including:
  • Reduced costs for maintenance and non-catastrophic repair;
  • Avoided catastrophic failures through timely identification of transformers in urgent need of repair or replacement;
  • Reduced outage time and improved reliability metrics;
  • Extended useful life for monitored transformers and reduced operating risks;
  • Reduced failure impacts, including environmental cleanup, customer/liability claims, collateral damage and customer complaints; and
  • Reduction of both technical and non-technical losses.
With Itron’s solution, utilities can better understand the health of the network in order to anticipate problems, prevent service disruptions and reduce non-technical losses. By applying Itron Analytics as part of the solution, transformer information is collected and displayed quickly in an easy-to-use format.  The utility can look at any transformer on the network that may be experiencing an anomaly and quickly determine the location and the unbalanced, overstressed or overheated conditions that may, if unattended, cause a failure of the transformer, thus accelerating resolution of the issue.

Utilities can experience transformer failure rates as high as 5 to 10 percent due to improper balancing, overstressing or overheating of the transformer. With distribution transformers costing anywhere from several hundred dollars to tens of thousands of dollars each, Itron’s DTM solution enables substantial savings for utilities through identification and replacement of distribution transformers before they fail. For illustration, a utility with an average transformer cost of $7,500 USD and 400 transformer failures prevented via the DTM solution would experience capital savings of $3 million USD – and that does not include the operational expense, reliability impacts and customer service challenges associated with failed transformers.

“Itron’s new DTM solution combines our field data collection technology with our analytics capabilities and operational expertise to deliver business outcomes that have distinctive value for utility customers as they look to optimize their capital investments and improve system reliability,” said Jeff Carkhuff, vice president of global solutions marketing for electricity at Itron. “By combining these capabilities, we help our utility customers improve distribution network reliability while also saving money and reducing losses.”

About Itron

Itron enables utilities and cities to safely, securely and reliably deliver critical infrastructure services to communities in more than 100 countries. Our portfolio of smart networks, software, services, meters and sensors helps our customers better manage electricity, gas and water resources for the people they serve. By working with our customers to ensure their success, we help improve the quality of life, ensure the safety and promote the well-being of millions of people around the globe. Itron is dedicated to creating a more resourceful world. Join us: www.itron.com.

Itron® and OpenWay® are registered trademarks of Itron, Inc. All third-party trademarks are property of their respective owners and any usage herein does not suggest or imply any relationship between Itron and the third party unless expressly stated.

PR Contact

Alison Mallahan

Senior Public Relations Manager

(509) 891-3802