An electrical engineer’s perspective on “smart meters”

Comment: As a retired Electrical Test and Diagnostic Engineer of Taupo I have had the experience to make an informed prognosis of all that has been said against the introduction of digital Smart Meters. What has been mentioned is the increased costs associated with installing these type of S M by replacing the Analogue meters.My research shows that the increases will all be above a 20% increase from previous billings. Because almost every supply is indirectly connected to Windfarm Asynchronous Generators or Induction Generators. Many people and engineers will be surprised by my next statement.These type of generators standing alone by themselves can never produce any electrical output. They, when connected to the grid system can only modify the perfectly produced sine wave powered from conventional Synchronous Alternators and pollute the whole system with large amounts of harmonically distorted power.

Because of this pollution into the system wiring they develop an illegal form of T H D (total harmonic distortion).What the Smart meters can an do very efficiently is totalises up all these extra frequencies up to the 20th harmonic and produces a greatly inflated bill for power that you cannot utilise and invariable produced illegally above the Standard 5% threshold.The revolving Analogue Meter absorbs these and do not speed up to increase the billed amount. There are other technical problems but for just this point of R F I another point is that once a group of these meters are installed within close knit communities they can be likened to a machine gun firing indiscriminately affectively within a 400 metre radius whilst the use of a cellphone is on a at call basis.There are many aspects of this subject that i could enlarge on particularly in the Spot Marketing of pricing that Smart Meters utilise.

The Stop Smart Meters campaign that you have undertaken is very fraught with high risks to you and others associated to enlighten the common citizen to health risks. Our personal rights are being abraded across many frontiers for the collection of large financial rewards within our own government and big corporations. From my point of view and at my age of 73 I will happily assist in any way I can. My input has been via the old New Zealand State Hydro . Then new Zealand Electrocorp. Then Taupo Electricity as Systems Test Engineer controlling all facets of Generation Distribution . And Metering disciplines. I cannot verify any health examples as an experience but in other areas it is well within my grasp.

The Smart Meter Roll Out in New Zealand is utilizing the improved Technology that is available as part of the advancement of mankind. There is some upsides and down sides depending where your priorities lay.
With out doubt a new generation of problems become exposed and in this case  R F I  (Radio Frequency Interference) developing serious health issues all within the confines of every persons home. This development has a pioneering complexity that requires addressing and solving safely and expeditiously to all concerned.

With the health issues aside the use of the Smart Meter Technology is claimed to have many benefits to the consumer, retailer and the country as a whole by better utilizing resources and decreasing our carbon imprint.
In New Zealand nothing could be further from the truth. What every consumer will notice immediately with out any doubt is the increase of their Billing Costs over the old Analogue meter billing. If you suffered from R F I health issues then this costing gain will create other ongoing health issues.

New Zealand has now over the last 15 years produced DIRTY power with the advent and increased use of Asyncronous Type Generators into our Grid System  in the form of Wind Farms and the use of Induction Generators using Geothermal energy. These are basically a 3 phase type motor operated above synchronous speed.

I personally would offer $1000 to the N Z Windfarm  affiliates that any of these units cannot produce one kilowatt of power standing isolated on their own or to supply all year round power to one home.The advertising programs state they can supply cities .This is a grossly false statement and needs correcting.

When they are electrically connected to the grid distributing wiring they can only modify the existing perfectly produced sine wave from Hydro and Steam stations by distorting it with multiples of harmonic power which radiates to the consumers dwelling. This in turn produces and develops T H D (total harmonic distortion ) waves that become impressed into the Smart Meter Digital electronics. This very cleverly disseminates each harmonic wave up to the 50th harmonic of power and totals the lot to the billing stage. This then becomes murky. What every consumer is paying for is power they don’t want or can not utilize and have no redress above the legal 5%.that is allowed within the power grid system. There are other interesting issues. But for the consumer whether a industrial commercial or domestic customer they will on the average pay between 10-30% more for their power than they need to and that is what the very corrupt Electricity Marketing Fee collect from every bill illegally between 0.3 and 0.6 cents per unit.

So it is imperative to hold onto  your Analogue rotating meter as these will absorb these harmonics to generally slow down.

Much is made of the gains to the national power grid by the use of these Smart Meters in allowing the customer to have the choice of selecting periods of power usage during Off peak thus saving money and to not stress the system when  needed  This is factually an untruth. What thinking people know is that N Z  lies in a geographically North South direction and we have only one time zone across the whole country. As a consequent to that we have a morning peak and a night  peak to which the power generators wish to supply through the Spot Market board ( M A R I A ) at a given price option as it is the lucrative part of their business. This generally covers only 6 hours out of 24 which in its self creates poor Load Factors and inefficiencies. The Generation cartels have Locked up the Marketing board by removing any competion within themselves by forcing acceptance of the Highest Marginal Cost Offered and that is the cost of new Generation to come onto line  The power that is offered is every half hour slot and there are 17,520 of them over a year.

What this means is there is no competition what so ever as all the Retailers are being supplied from the same pot at the same time at the same price. And to compare with other systems around the world to gain acceptance to some remote point is a publicity exercise only.

I have mentioned that the harmonics that is allowed onto the system has to be within the 5% margin or else you are penalised through the courts . If you are a customer that generate these harmonics the fines are quite high laid down by the Commerce Commission . They have abrogated their Authority by not monitoring or prosecuting any of the Generators who pollute the system to my knowledge. I also believe that a T V Fair Go exposure that should force the government to repay all the customers that section of the Marketing Fee that has been collected illegally.
But I wont hold my breath.

[Name supplied]

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