Itron-Microsoft Benchmarking Test Confirms Large Scale Meter Data Management Capabilities

This guest post is contributed from the Microsoft Power and Utilities Team

Imagine reading 10 million meters every 15 minutes. That’s 40 million data sets per hour, 960 million data sets per day, and 6.7 billion sets per week. Could your system handle that deluge of data right now, today?

If you are using Itron’s Enterprise Edition Meter Data Management product with Microsoft SQL Server 2008 R2, your answer would likely be “Yes”, at least according to the results of a major benchmarking test of our products released today by Itron.

You can read the press release here, but the Cliff Notes version is that our two companies collaborated in conducting a series of high-volume data tests on IEE MDM using SQL Server 2008 R2 with the goal of replicating the 10-million meter, every 15-minute tests. As the press release states:

Each test executed a “day in the life” scenario that involved processing a mix of hourly, 15-minute interval and register data—from data import, validation and estimation to billing determinant calculation and export—to support time-based pricing. These tests verified the IEE MDM and Microsoft SQL database platform performance and scalability on commodity server hardware, which ultimately lowers the total cost of ownership for utilities.

This is the second such test we’ve conducted with Itron and both should serve to instill even greater utility confidence in the ability of our systems to help them usher in the smart energy ecosystem. In a 2008 blog, we noted how Itron tested its IEE MDM solution on Microsoft SQL Server2005 and SQL Server 2008, for 4.5 million meters, and data intervals at every half hour. That test imported over 200 million intervals of data and provided evidence that IEE MDM could scale to meet increasingly sophisticated advanced metering infrastructure requirements. At the time, we noted that utilities were leaning toward 15-minute intervals, and even 5-minute intervals.

This most recent benchmarking study far exceeded those previous results and should further instill confidence that our companies’ combined solution provides the scalability and agility needed to meet future smart grid requirements as well as integrate with and protect existing technology investments. In terms of performance, administration, integration, security and availability, Microsoft SQL Server 2008 is continuing to perform. Be sure to look at the full SQL Server 2008 site here for more information about how it can be used in your utility company. And check out the Itron Enterprise Edition Meter Data Management page here as well. – Jon C. Arnold

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