The numbers are truly staggering. Southern California Edison’s (SCE’s) SmartConnect program collects more data every 12 hours than it previously did in an entire year. In total, the utility says, it will pull in roughly 5.6 billion meter reads a month from its roughly 4.9-million metered customers, requiring about 28 gigabytes of storage daily, or slightly more than 10 terabytes a year.
In 2012, CenterPoint Energy collected 99 data points every day from its 2.2 million smart meters, compared to just one data point per month with its old analog meters. By year’s end, the company needed 30 terabytes of storage to accommodate the 217,800,000 data points it was bringing in every day from the system.
Similarly, data storage needs at PPL Electric Utilities have ballooned in recent years. For example, the utility’s meter data management system database now holds more than seven terabytes of data—much more than the three terabytes in the system’s initial design—and it is still growing.