Lakeland looks to SAIC for smart grid contract

As part of an effort to reduce its carbon footprint while adopting new smart grid infrastructure technologies, Lakeland, Florida and SAIC announced this week a $13 million, 3-year deal.

SAIC is a systems integrator, enabling utilities and customers to engage in two-way communications using advanced sensing technology, data analytics and cybersecurity tools. The City of Lakeland is hoping the company can help the municipality create a long-term smart grid strategy that will curb future demand and improve the city’s overall operational efficiency.

“Lakeland Electric is embarking on an exciting project where in the near term our customers benefit with new rate options, improved metering operations, and enhanced outage management,” said David Kus, Lakeland Electric assistant general manager, in a statement. “Long term, the installation of a core Smart Grid system positions Lakeland Electric for the future.”

According to a release by the company, SAIC will integrate an Oracle meter management data system with a Sensus advanced metering infrastructure system with 124,000 residential meters and 5,000 home area network devices. In addition to these tasks SAIC is going to create a customer-facing Web Portal for Lakeland and outline a business process improvement plan to make the project self-sustaining.

SAIC vice president Rex Ballard said the implementation would prepare Lakeland to meet their energy challenges for the coming years. “Their leadership in this endeavor will benefit them in future years,” he said.

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