Advanced Metering Overview

What is advanced metering?

Advanced Metering Infrastructure (AMI) is advanced, two-way digital metering that is a safe and proven technology widely used across the US. Advanced metering is a building block for a more efficient electric system that will provide improved operational efficiencies and numerous benefits to customer owners.

Advanced meters connect homes and business to the PUD and collect meter readings remotely. The Advanced meters record energy-use and send it back to the PUD across a secure network, several times a day. The meters will transmit data for less than 60 seconds total per day. Once it’s within our secure firewall, the information will be matched up with customer accounts for billing and other customer service activities. 

The Network

The PUD has installed a two-way communication radio network, where equipment and electrical meters are able to receive and transmit information, such as energy-use, across the network and back to the PUD’s operation center. This technology reduces the need to send personnel into the field to gather the information at each meter. The radio system is a “mesh” network which enables the meters to relay the data between devices taking the least path of resistance. All data is transmitted using a 900Mhz frequency over a secured network and all data is encrypted from point to point.

AMI Network

Are there any impacts to my health from advanced meters?

We’ve heard some questions and concerns about radio frequency (RF), electro-magnetic fields (EMF), and the potential of these energy fields to impact your health. Advanced Metering Infrastructure (AMI) is a safe and proven technology widely used across the US. More than half the utilities in the country are already using this technology. Advanced meters use low-energy RF waves to send energy-use information to the PUD through a secure wireless network.


Quick Facts:

  • RF is a form of electromagnetic energy that moves through the space around us. It is used with many everyday devices in your home and the community.
  • Advanced meters result in much lower levels of RF exposure than come with common electrical devices. In fact, exposure levels are many times lower than with a cell phone held to the ear.
  • Many of your existing appliances and mobile devices, such as microwaves, Wi-Fi routers and baby monitors transmit far higher RF levels and often are much closer to you than a digital meter.
  • Advanced  meters record energy usage throughout the day. However, actual data transmission, using RF, occurs in milliseconds, for a total of 60 seconds or less per day.
  • The American Cancer Society (ACS) does not have an official position or statement on whether radiofrequency radiation from cell phones, cell phones towers, or other sources are a cause of cancer.