Mark Michaels has co-led the smart grid consulting support of CPS Energy’s Grid Optimization program.  Grid Optimization started with a thorough evaluation of AMI vendor proposals in Q3 2012 followed by the development of an AMI contractual framework in Q4.  In January 2013, Mark supported the CPS Energy Team by assuming roles that included negotiations support and contract development.  Today, Mark continues to provide program management, solution architecture definition, vendor management, test management, deployment logistics, and Smart Grid subject matter expertise.  

CPS Energy, the largest combined electric and gas municipal utility in the United States, is relying on consulting expertise to augment its team by providing leadership and technical expertise as it implements its aggressive smart grid optimization initiative.  The San Antonio utility serves approximately 770,000 electric and 350,000 natural gas customers. When complete, the system will facilitate wireless two-way communication between CPS Energy and its customers and allow for increased energy efficiency, while offering greater control and savings to CPS Energy customers.

CPS Energy began its Smart Grid journey with an AMI Pilot Project in 2011 that validated specific AMI technologies as a fit for its customers and distribution operations, including implementation of processes that lead to automated billing for more than 40,000 of its customers.  In 2012, CPS Energy proceeded with full smart grid solution implementation, including AMI, DA and network infrastructure, across its entire customer base.

“Many utilities choose to phase in customer data presentment, Outage Management and Distribution Automation capabilities later in the program life cycle,” said Martha Mitchell, CPS Energy Grid Optimization Program Director, and Senior Director, Product & Portfolio Development.  “CPS Energy believes we will realize substantial operational and customer benefits by implementing these technologies earlier, which creates an added level of complexity to the implementation and systems integration effort.  CPS Energy values and relies upon the expertise that Mark brings, and has come to rely upon him as a trusted advisor to the CPS Energy Team.”  

In support of CPS Energy’s ongoing program implementation, the scope of services and activities provided by Mark includes:

  • Developing an initial AMI contract framework, providing ongoing support of contract updates, and supporting contract execution
  • Refining and adapting the Program’s integrated release strategy for AMI, MDMS, OMS and Advanced data presentment
  • Providing technical consulting and subject matter expertise on CPS Energy’s Advanced Metering Infrastructure (AMI) technology solution
  • Supporting Ongoing Program Management Operations
  • Developing Detailed Planning and Project Execution Strategy
  • Supporting Vendor Partner Management
  • Providing technical guidance and implementation support to the AMI, DA and Networkproject teams
  • Developing and supporting Risk Management Activities
  • Assisting the project team in the creation of technical standards and implementation methodologies
  • Collaborating with the AMI, DA and Network project teams with review and recommendations on system design, implementation and testing
  • Supporting solution test readiness and test management services, designed to assure that all segments as well as the end-to-end solution meets CPS Energy’s operational customer and business requirements

Smart Meters coming to SAWS

VASS Solutions congratulates San Antonio Water System (SAWS) on Board approval to Pilot its ConnectH2O program.  VASS Solutions looks forward to helping SAWS successfully execute its Pilot program and eventually implement an AMI and MDMS solution for its nearly 600,000 customers.

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