Traditionally, mechanical rotary piston meters are used for domestic/small commercial revenue metering with rotary piston and turbine meters used for larger commercial revenue and district metering. There are alternatives such as single jet meters and battery powered electromagnetic meters (the latter with Class D approval for domestic revenue applications) which offer potential benefits and opportunities. Single jet meters are used as established technology overseas, though despite claimed performance benefits including low flow performance, they have not been exploited in depth in the UK.
WRc was aware, through close contacts with meter manufacturers, of future near market developments and it is timely to explore collaboratively the potential benefits and associated costs to Water Utilities of implementing these alternative meter technologies.
Exploited developments and realised the business benefits that accrue include:
- Revenue optimisation from improved low flow performance and potential capability for smart tariffs.
- Lower full life cost through improved long-term meter reliability and improved meter replacement strategies.
- Improved meter management and reductions in uncertainty through improved confidence in calibration and long term stable meter performance with reduced wear in solid state technologies.
- Improved operational and regulatory information, e.g. for leakage calculations.