In the past year, the Department of Energy awarded nearly $3.2 million to seven Smart Grid Data Access projects, which will encourage utilities, local governments, and communities to create programs that empower consumers to better manage their electricity use through improved access to their own electricity consumption data.

The seven awardees below are a part of Phase I. They will show how the Smart Grid Data Access program can assist consumers in receiving access to their electricity usage data. If successful, the Energy Department plans to select one awardee to receive approximately $2 million in additional funding for Phase II to apply the tools and software to an entire service territory, region, or community.

The awardees will also contribute more than $5.7 million to their projects, bringing the total value of these projects to more than $8.9 million. 

San Diego Gas and Electric (SDG&E) – San Diego, California

DOE share: $500,000; Recipient share: $2.4 million

SDG&E will use social game mechanics to enhance its SDG&E Peak Time Rebate program, which allows customers to earn points, prizes, and rewards for signing up, saving energy, and responding to Reduce Your Use days, occurring during times of high peak-power demand. Read the DOE fact sheet on this project

National Information Solutions Cooperative (NISC) – Mandan, North Dakota

DOE share: $464,000; Recipient share: $464,000

NISC, an information technology company that develops and supports software and hardware solutions for its member-owners, will develop the technology to provide electric, natural gas, and water consumption information directly to customers via an online Smart Hub portal. Read the DOE fact sheet on this project.

Pecan Street Inc. – Austin, Texas

DOE share: $500,000; Recipient share: $629,000

Pecan Street Inc. and the Texas Advanced Computing Center will create and begin operating a nonprofit product testing center for consumer-oriented smart grid technologies. Read the DOE fact sheet on this project.

Gulf of Maine Research Institute – Portland, ME

DOE share: $331,000; Recipient share: $331,000

The Gulf of Maine Research Institute will give 7th and 8th grade students, who get a laptop computer with Internet access as part of their educational experience in Maine, access to their families’ electricity consumption data through “PowerHouse,” an interactive online learning environment. Read the DOE fact sheet on this project.

City of Dubuque, Iowa – Dubuque, IA

DOE share: $500,000; Recipient share: $500,000

The City of Dubuque will implement a Smarter Energy Conservation Portal that gives residents access to their electricity consumption data and uses advanced analytics, dynamic visualization, and activity-based engagement to help them better understand their consumption. Read the DOE fact sheet on this project.

Balfour Beatty Military Housing Management, LLC – Newtown Square, PA

DOE share: $400,000; Recipient share: $400,000

Balfour Beatty Military Housing Management’s “Shift for Good” community program will help Navy military families, who are now responsible for their own energy consumption, to determine which customer engagement strategies will maximize the energy savings for these Navy families. Read the DOE fact sheet on this project.

State of Arizona – Phoenix, AZ

DOE share: $500,000; Recipient share: $998,000

The State of Arizona will provide Automated Meter Reading (AMR) devices to 1,000 customers to allow them to receive their own electric consumption data at a minimum of 15-minute intervals. Read the DOE fact sheet on this project.