Abu Dhabi tests time-of-day pricing

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A "time-of-day" purchasing trail in Abu Dhabi could provide useful insights to utilities in the United States.

The Powerwise Office of the Regulation and Supervision Bureau (the Bureau) of Abu Dhabi has successfully completed the installation phase of its time-of-day energy purchasing trial -- an initiative to ultimately change consumption habits by encouraging conservation and incentivizing electricity use outside of peak demand hours, thus putting less strain on the electricity grid and potentially saving money.

The trial uses smart meters and in-home electronic displays to monitor household electricity consumption during different times of the day to raise awareness of electricity usage.

The smart meters are linked to an indicative tariff that will measure the effectiveness of time-of-day pricing. In a 24-hour period, electricity is charged at two different prices -- higher at peak times and lower at off-peak times. Information tracked by the smart meters will be recorded and analyzed throughout the trial to help identify both consumption patterns and the trial's success.

"It is all about 'flattening' the peak by shifting their consumption to the off-peak," said Ramiz Alaileh, the Bureau's Powerwise Manager. "Participants will learn about their real-time consumption, as well as hourly, daily and monthly consumption profiles; not only that, but they will also be able to know about how much it costs them at any point in time."

The trial will end in late 2013, at which time the Powerwise Office will determine the effect of time-of-day pricing on consumption habits.

For more:
- visit the Powerwise website

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