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JoeLee
08-02-2011, 09:24 AM
Is this guy an extremist ??????? or am I misinterpreting sometning? Your thoughts.

JL......................

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8JNFr_j6kdI

Forrest Addy
08-02-2011, 09:50 AM
60 years ago it was flouride and communism. Now it's nutcases like this. Ooo. I found something scary. Pay me money and I'll keep you scared.

RussZHC
08-02-2011, 10:06 AM
Certainly not a lawyer but seems a bit of a stretch for "probable cause"...

Rosco-P
08-02-2011, 10:42 AM
Seems like reason enough to get your machine shop (or grow farm) off the grid.

JoeFin
08-02-2011, 10:43 AM
You can't place a magnate on a smart meter to reduce your electricity bill. Thats the Big Conspiracy

Scottike
08-02-2011, 11:12 AM
What a Ding Dong... that 1 watt transmiter probably has a range of a few hundred yards at best. Good idea for cutting down dog bit meter readers.
Police have been using electricity consumption rates to find suspicious activity long before smart meters came out.
But knowing when you turn on a light? Get real, the average house has so many gadgets going on and off automatically there's no way to pin point exactly whats happening except that electricity usage is going up or down.
Typical media hype - no news today? Let's exagerate something way out of proportion, and see if we can turn it in to something it's not.

wheeltapper
08-02-2011, 11:46 AM
love the "official" looking backdrop he has. he's probably sitting in a cellar full of cobwebs.:D

Roy

Dr Stan
08-02-2011, 12:22 PM
Just another in a long stream of whack jobs. :eek:

Black_Moons
08-02-2011, 12:24 PM
But knowing when you turn on a light? Get real, the average house has so many gadgets going on and off automatically there's no way to pin point exactly whats happening except that electricity usage is going up or down.

You think so huu?

How about pinpointing exactly whats going on inside a FPGA with over 100,000 logic gates, Just by the power usage?

http://www.theregister.co.uk/2011/07/27/chip_crypto_cracked/

High end crypto cracked.. Just by reading the power usage.
Not saying they can read whats on your PC (Athough tempist can) from your power usage, but they can definately at least tell when your home or not. (Most automated loads are much bigger then lightbulbs btw.)

Plus, diffrent loads have diffrent power factors, A 200W PC produces a much diffrent load then 200W of lighting.

PS: Where I live, they used 'high consumption' as an excuse for 'safty inspectors' to visit your house.. and fine you $5000 if they find ONE little thing wrong, and condem the house. Such as a missing faceplate on a junction box.

PPS: High consumption = Me trying to keep my house over 10C in the winter. All electric heat. No gas service.

The city is currently being sued due for invasion of privacy, violation of human rights, Communication of false info to 3rd partys (Yep, they even called your bank and told on everyone who 'failed' the inspection that your house was being used as a controlled substance property, and evicted renters), Also they put up signs on your property to the same effect.

So basicly, Right outta the nazi books of 'if you use too much electricity (Too much being defined as trying to keep your house at room tempature during the winter), We will come and get you. All under the guise of 'Safty'

PPPS: Xmas light/tree users have a higher risk of burning the house down then those who use more then the amount of power they set, Are they gonna fine you $5000 for xmas next?

macona
08-02-2011, 12:58 PM
Thats a little different than what a power meter can do. Actually a whole lot different. First you have a layer in isolation through the power supplies. Second these is not the technology in these smart meters to do what people think they are.

mike os
08-02-2011, 12:59 PM
yeah right

I have a shed that is heated to 32c 24x7x365, my electric for it costs me £200 a month without the house... never even been questioned about it. ( I Kept a large number of tropical fish);)

aboard_epsilon
08-02-2011, 01:08 PM
PS: Where I live, they used 'high consumption' as an excuse for 'safty inspectors' to visit your house.. and fine you $5000 if they find ONE little thing wrong, and condem the house. Such as a missing faceplate on a junction box.
Is it that, you can still have as many extension cables plugged in as you like...whilst all this is going on ...and you cant get done for this ..
but you can trip on extension cables....overload them..all sorts ..and i bet they are exemp ..they are in our country .

this totalitarianism is pissing me off ..we are already made to buy condensing boilers that brake down all the time and have less than 5 year lifespan ..you are not aloud to fix them yourself.

so you're saying, when Britain becomes a nation of smart meters (soon)..there will be more trouble to come

all the best.markj

Black_Moons
08-02-2011, 02:09 PM
yeah right

I have a shed that is heated to 32c 24x7x365, my electric for it costs me £200 a month without the house... never even been questioned about it. ( I Kept a large number of tropical fish);)

Around here, $200 a month is about when they send the cops to your door. One little thing not up to code (Including gas code, Building code, Or just having lamps or 'dirt', have all been used as excuses) and you get a $5000 fine, Not allowed to take it to coart or contest it or get it reviewed in any way, property condemed untill you fix whatever they complained about (And more money to have them come back and reinspect and declare it fixed), mortgage company notifyed, Neighbors notifyed etc that the property is now declared a 'controled substance manufacturing property'. Would'nt be suprised if it comes up when you try and sell the place too.

PS: the cops also refuse to let you in your OWN HOUSE to see what the inspector is doing, Not allowed to video tape any of it, and reports so far have had drawers rifled though, Cabinates opened, etc. Nothing at all to do with 'safty' Wonder how many of those inspectors are stealing stuff like TSA agents?

Hope the city loses millions to the lawsuit.



Be glad you don't live in my city. (its a city by city bylaw thing, Not province wide)

Mcgyver
08-02-2011, 02:12 PM
What a Ding Dong... that 1 watt transmiter probably has a range of a few hundred yards at best. Good idea for cutting down dog bit meter readers.


the way it works is each meter has a zigbee or similar device and the info leapfrogs. Every 300 or so meters there's one with a cell phone that dials and ups all the data once a day or so. Typically they sample consumption 5-10 times an hour although they could opt for greater resolution. The utility certainly cant' tell what you're turning on a light on and off but the can tell what time of day you're using your power at...which is the point of all this so that do variable rate billing. There are many firms making technologies to measure power consumption of say and individual lamp, give it an IP address, and let you remotely control it or view its consumption...but this data hardly gets to the utility.

Where the utility does want to gain a level of control is electric vehicle charging. This has the potential of overwhelming the grid, so they want to be able to throttle the EV's in a neighborhood to prevent a transformers blowing....and no, its not a free lunch charging at night, the distribution utilities pay more attention to night time temps than daytime - the night is when the network of transformers gets to cool down. Some have temp sensors with data connections on each transformer, if they throttle its to avoid an outage

This is an area i've been doing some work in lately. Smart meters make sense and have the potential to gather a lot of data on households, I guess you hope privacy laws etc restrict the use of that to the utility's billing department

danlb
08-02-2011, 02:17 PM
Around here, $200 a month is about when they send the cops to your door. One little thing not up to code (Including gas code, Building code, Or just having lamps or 'dirt', have all been used as excuses) and you get a $5000 fine, Not allowed to take it to coart or contest it or get it reviewed in any way, property condemed untill you fix whatever they complained about (And more money to have them come back and reinspect and declare it fixed), mortgage company notifyed, Neighbors notifyed etc that the property is now declared a 'controled substance manufacturing property'. Would'nt be suprised if it comes up when you try and sell the place too.


Sounds like local corruption. That's hard to fight if it's entrenched enough. If it's not entrenched, then check with your national police about a corruption investigation.

I've never heard of anything like that anywhere else. Well, maybe where organized crime has taken over the local government....

Dan

Evan
08-02-2011, 02:22 PM
Interesting that this should be posted now. I have been doing some serious investigation into the subject of smart meters and have found out more than the power companies want you to know.

Firstly, just yesterday a new study was reported that shows a direct and linear correlation between maternal exposure to alternating electromagnetic fields and the incidence of asthma in children. This was a very well designed and controlled prospective study that actually measured the direct exposure of over 800 pregnant women to EM fields. They then followed the children of these mothers for up to 13 years and discovered a direct linear relationship between exposure and rates of asthma. The confidence levels are 95% and the exposure amounts very small. The size of the effect is very significant. The children of women with the lowest exposure (0.3 milligauss) had a 1 in 10 chance of asthma while the children of women with the highest (2 milligauss) had a 1 in 3 rate of asthma.

The study was conducted by Kaiser Permanente.

See from JAMA http://newsatjama.jama.com/2011/08/01/author-insights-magnetic-fields-may-increase-asthma-risks/

Next item that had been a closely guarded secret is that smart meters contain significant amounts of mercury. It is in the form of a mercury tilt switch which is part of the anti tamper system. I won't post the link to that document from the makers of one brand of smart meter because I don't want it taken down. It has been posted on the WWW accidentally available to the public. Right now I have informed the media of that fact and they are studying it.

The next item is that smart meters which are being installed in BC use a transmitter that radiates at up to 2 watts power. The company that makes it claims that the duty cycle is so low that even years of use only amount to a single cell phone call worth of exposure.

I don't like being lied to. What they don't want you to know is how the smart meter grid works. Here and there they install special meters called collectors. These are meters that act as routers for the entire local network and are radiating nearly continuously since they collect data from up to hundreds of meters in the vicinity. This data is then relayed to the next collector until it is within range of the local endpoint. If you happen to have a collector on your house then you have a 2 watt radiator running 24/7.

The next item is that the smart meter does not require a transmitter to do its job. In fact, both in the US and Canada the companies installing these meters cannot force you to accept a transmitter on your property. State or provincial law have no jurisdiction over RF devices, that is strictly a federal responsibility. In Canada, at least, there is no enabling legislation that can be used to force the installation of a transmitter on private property. The smart meter is perfectly capable of operating without it. It has an optical port on the front for a meter reader and it can also communicate via POTS (Plain Old Telephone Service). While they can mandate the installation of the meter they cannot mandate the installation of the transmitter.

I don't want the transmitter on my property because it will most probably interfere with other equipment that I operate including my security cameras.

Evan
08-02-2011, 02:27 PM
Where the utility does want to gain a level of control is electric vehicle charging. This has the potential of overwhelming the grid, so they want to be able to throttle the EV's in a neighborhood to prevent a transformers blowing....and no, its not a free lunch charging at night, the distribution utilities pay more attention to night time temps than daytime - the night is when the network of transformers gets to cool down. Some have temp sensors with data connections on each transformer, if they throttle its to avoid an outage


How do you "throttle" power delivery? It's either on or off. The smart meters have provision for a remote controlled disconnect but it is on/off only. The meters here aren't using a zigbee. They are on a 900 mhz band system developed by Cisco. Cell phone can't be used in our area since we don't have coverage. That applies to much of BC.

Mcgyver
08-02-2011, 02:52 PM
How do you "throttle" power delivery?

at the car charging level. Picture a smart car charger linked to the utility. Its not 100% there yet, it was just offered as an concern on the horizon where the distribution utility wants to cross the threshold and have some direct control on power use.

you may well not have zigbee, but you're not a 1 watt meter then either. I explained about the zigbee to show how despite each meter being only 1 watt they chain across a neighborhood and still get the data to the utility - that it is still phoning home

Black_Moons
08-02-2011, 02:52 PM
Sounds like local corruption. That's hard to fight if it's entrenched enough. If it's not entrenched, then check with your national police about a corruption investigation.

I've never heard of anything like that anywhere else. Well, maybe where organized crime has taken over the local government....

Dan

Why do you think my city is getting SUED?

PS: they appologized to a few dozen people who had not paid the fee yet, 'reviewed' there case and declare them innocent... Right after talk about a lawsuit started.

Unfortualy for them, this looks very badly on the lawsuit as they basicly admited they where wrong.. in all the cases they reviewed.
People who allready paid the fine (You have to, to get your house uncondemed), Are declared 'guilty' and won't be allowed review, Or have the city recant its claims of controled substance production to 3rd partys (Like your bank) or tell your neighbors that the signs claiming it was a controled substance production property where a mistake.

Basicly its looking like everyone charged will get at least $5000 in damages, Maybe up to $20000+.. for 500 people. So 2.5 million dollars (That was allready fined to people to 'run the program', Funny how a 30 minute inspection somehow costs $5000, Wish I got paid $10,000/hr for my work)

Up to 10 million dollars.. Before any punative judgements.

Lawsuit is going forward and city has been served. Waiting for citys responce.

Black_Moons
08-02-2011, 02:54 PM
at the car charging level. Picture a smart car charger linked to the utility. Its not 100% there yet, it was just offered as an concern on the horizon where the distribution utility wants to cross the threshold and have some direct control on power use.

you may well not have zigbee, but you're not a 1 watt meter then either. I explained about the zigbee to show how despite each meter being only 1 watt they chain across a neighborhood and still get the data to the utility - that it is still phoning home

"Yea, Sorry I did'nt make it to work today, The power company decided not to charge my car overnight, and I got stranded 10 miles away from home... Im fired for missing work all 5 days this week? But.. its not my fault... My neighbors are overheating the transformers with thier moded electric cars/dumb electric cars and the power company won't pay for an upgrade, even though they allready charge me 2x as much for all power I use over X threshhold."

I don't think utilitys (or governments) should be allowed to dictate how much resources you are allowed to use if you can PAY for them (On a multi tiered payment system if needed). If the transformers blow up and melt down, Thats the power companys problem. Not mine.

PS: We have dumb meters and 2 tiered power charges. No need for smart meters for that. Want to seperate all power drawn at night from power drawn at day? Dumb meters that can do that have been around for years. All you really need is 2 meters + a timer. Well, Not even 2 meters, Just 2 dials for the same meter and a timer that switchs a gear over.

Mcgyver
08-02-2011, 03:03 PM
I don't like being lied to. What they don't want you to know is how the smart meter grid works. Here and there they install special meters called collectors. These are meters that act as routers for the entire local network and are radiating nearly continuously since they collect data from up to hundreds of meters in the vicinity. This data is then relayed to the next collector until it is within range of the local endpoint. If you happen to have a collector on your house then you have a 2 watt radiator running 24/7.


Here a connection is made once a day from the 1 in 300 meters with the cell phone unit. Toronto Hydro is one of the largest distributors in North America and that is how they've done it, although things can be different in each locale of course., Why do you assume/what information do you have, that its on 24/7? Thats a lot of extra cell phone air time for no gain.

Post the stuff on the mercury, why would it be taken down?....and what has 'maternal exposure to alternating electromagnetic fields' to do with smart meters - you think the added zigbee broadcast is a meaningful addition? A good friend of mine makes smart meters (his own design/firm), post some links and I'll ask his opinion on it re the mercury and security.

Mcgyver
08-02-2011, 03:13 PM
"Yea, Sorry I did'nt make it to work today, The power company decided not to charge my car overnight, and I got stranded 10 miles away from home... Im fired for missing work all 5 days this week? But.. its not my fault... My neighbors are overheating the transformers with thier moded electric cars/dumb electric cars and the power company won't pay for an upgrade, even though they allready charge me 2x as much for all power I use over X threshhold."

I don't think utilitys (or governments) should be allowed to dictate how much resources you are allowed to use if you can PAY for them (On a multi tiered payment system if needed). If the transformers blow up and melt down, Thats the power companys problem. Not mine.


the power companies problem lol. it becomes your problem when you're sitting in the dark for 2 days or you get a $1500 bill because of some overuse premium charge the concoct. Ultimately, there are only people....this like any other problem eventually gets paid for by the consumer...its on your and my shoulders one way or another

This imo is one the great challenges and opportunities of this era, the concerns you point out are valid. As are all the other stakeholders....bottom line is we will have to do more and more with electricity but with an infrastructure barely able to currently cope. No politician ever got a gold star championing a rate increase to pay for infrastructure rebuilding....so now its band aid on top of band aid. It will be interesting

topct
08-02-2011, 03:18 PM
This was installed last week about a hundred feet from my house. It is a radio controlled high voltage switch. You can see one of the servo motors on the end of the T. There is another on the other end. It has a manual switch built into it and an electronic one in a box lower down on the pole. If you look under the T you can see a small box with 3 antenea on it. In normal operation it will be radio controlled. Part of the new "smart grid".

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v78/topct/IMG_0201.jpg

Evan
08-02-2011, 03:46 PM
Why do you assume/what information do you have, that its on 24/7? Thats a lot of extra cell phone air time for no gain.

There is no cell phone time. The system here uses a 900 mhz self configuring network that is tied to the POTS at some point by an aggregator router. The intermediate collector routers are mounted on houses and provide relay capability up to five steps to the aggregator. It is those collectors that run 24/7 on the meter LAN.

The frequency of communication in no way has anything to do with the granularity of data collected. The meter has its own storage capability and the collected data is bursted out whenever it can. The system works much the same as Ethernet in that it relies on random transmission intervals to avoid collisions on the network. The average packet frequency is about every 1 to 2 minutes but if the communication conditions are poor then it may happen several times per minute.

The LAN collectors are constantly receiving and ACKing packets from nearby meters and then forwarding to the next collector or aggregator so they are always active.

If you want the mercury information go to itron.com and drill down to the "support tools + documents" page and download "Radio-Based Endpoint Disposal Manual" or just search on that exact phrase on Google.


and what has 'maternal exposure to alternating electromagnetic fields' to do with smart meters

It provides a reason to dispute the contention that the RFI from wireless smart meters is harmless. It may not be. This is the first well conducted study to show a very strong direct correlation between EMF and negative health effects.

The inclusion of a ziggbee is to provide local tie in to a housholder's LAN if they wish. The power output of the zigbee is only a few milliwatts.

Black_Moons
08-02-2011, 03:55 PM
the power companies problem lol. it becomes your problem when you're sitting in the dark for 2 days or you get a $1500 bill because of some overuse premium charge the concoct. Ultimately, there are only people....this like any other problem eventually gets paid for by the consumer...its on your and my shoulders one way or another

This imo is one the great challenges and opportunities of this era, the concerns you point out are valid. As are all the other stakeholders....bottom line is we will have to do more and more with electricity but with an infrastructure barely able to currently cope. No politician ever got a gold star championing a rate increase to pay for infrastructure rebuilding....so now its band aid on top of band aid. It will be interesting

If im in the dark for 2 days, thats 2 days they are not getting a damn cent outta me, Point being if they HAVE to fix it before something blows up, They WILL fix it before it blows up.

If they have the power of just going "Sorry your using too much power during peak and are gonna be shut down till off peak so we can use the same grid for more power at your inconviance" They will.

A much better way is just have, as I said, a little gear on a timer in your meter, and multiple readouts (That'd cost what, $10 in parts?), If you want to shape power usage, Let the consumer do it based on incentives, Not based on punishment.

You sold me the 100A service, at an insane cost I might add. that 100A is mine damnit, All of it. If you did'nt want me using 100A you should'nt of sold me 100A, Or charged what it actualy costs to supply what you sold me.

Its like the car dealership (or car insurance company) comming by and taking your car away for a week, because they decided you are driving too much for what you paid when you bought the car (insurance) and thats not really acceptable what with the road congestion and all, Much cheaper just to take your car then build more roads, Your rights/freedom be damned.

Evan
08-02-2011, 04:24 PM
Post the stuff on the mercury, why would it be taken down?...

Because the enabling legislation for smart meters in BC is The Clean Air Act. In it is the stipulation that detailed information on the actual meters is not to be released to the public.

jkilroy
08-02-2011, 05:01 PM
I was working on smart meter technology back in the late 90's, this isn't new. And yes, lots of what this guys is talking about is quite true. We worked on the law enforcement requirements, mandated by the feds, for quite some time.

topct
08-02-2011, 05:20 PM
Seems odd to have to use a mercury based tamper switch.

If a person wanted to tamper with it they would probably pull it first. That fact could easily be recorded internally and if and when the meter was plugged in again it would send a report of the action. They would send out a technician to examine the meter. They would then see that the wire (one time use) seal had been defeated and any attempt at opening the meter would also surely show.

topct
08-02-2011, 05:25 PM
I was working on smart meter technology back in the late 90's, this isn't new. And yes, lots of what this guys is talking about is quite true. We worked on the law enforcement requirements, mandated by the feds, for quite some time.

Can you describe any of those requirements?

darryl
08-02-2011, 05:36 PM
This promises to be a big can of worms. The spying aspect is very real- it can easily be seen how it's possible. Official corruption could easily become a menace to the general public. To what extent this will happen I don't know, but it would seem that some have already experienced this. A good question is do we actually have the right to consume as much power as we want, and any time we want, and does this fit in, in any way, with conservation of power and resources? Maybe we don't believe that we need to conserve, etc- we'll just find new sources of energy as the demand grows, no problem. Hmm-

Smart meters could help in this situation, giving us the information we could use to manage our individual power usages more wisely. But it's unlikely that enough of us would follow such a program to make any real difference. We are going to end up flooding vast acreages to supply another dam, producing more power to run our wastful lifestyles that we feel we are somehow entitled to- and we are going to pay for it somehow, of that you can be sure. Regardless of the smart meter, we are going to be paying more and more as time goes on- having the smart meter installed, we are going to be paying more right away as the power companies use the data they gather to justify the increases.

At this point, it isn't really a big abuse of the system yet. When they start to say 'here's a surcharge because you used lots of energy at these peak times', and then 'here's another surcharge because of power factor'- they're really going to stick it to us for reasons we have little control over. Not everyone is going to wait until 2 am to cook their dinner. And what of those high power factor cf lightbulbs that are going to be shoved down our throats- I have no doubt that by the end of the day we're going to be paying as much for lighting with those as we are now with incandescents- And if they take control over when and how much you can charge your electric vehicle- it's not going to be fun times at ridgemont high.

So far this hasn't addressed the issue of 'detecting' grow ops, and applying 'remediative' measures based on 'informations' which cannot be verified by representatives of the public. I'm not against detecting and shutting down grow-ops, but it would seem that already there have been innocent people subjected to unconstitutional hardships because of this 'program'. If they are guilty, fair enough, but for the innocent- can we just accept that 'they were in the wrong place as the wrong time' - a really scary thing is that this is probably just the tip of the iceberg.

No, I don't want a transmitter on my meter, I don't want or need a smart meter, I don't want restrictions placed on my power usage, but I will welcome some interaction from the power company on ways to decrease and even out my power usage. I'm a law abiding citizen, and I'm unwilling to accept the type of intrusions this smart meter program promises to unleash on me.

J. R. Williams
08-02-2011, 05:36 PM
The big problem with the fancy meters is the next step that will hit us in the face-- demand metering and resulting higher billing. It was part of my former job to monitor the electric consumption and not hit a new demand peak.(around 12 mw). Any time a new peak was hit, higher rates would be in effect for the next 11 months before it would return to the former number. All this is for the benefit of the power company who is trying to revise customers habits and postpone building new power plants. I predict we will have demand rates in the near future.

JRW

Evan
08-02-2011, 05:48 PM
I wonder what sort of reaction will take place if my consumption drops to exactly zero for long parts of the day? Are they going to assume that I have bypassed the meter instead of simply throwing the main breaker and running from solar? Do I have to let them in my house to verify that I haven't installed a meter bypass on the wall inside of the meter? I am not at all inclined to let them in my house.

Evan
08-02-2011, 06:10 PM
This is from Itron, the company that is supplying the smart meters for BC Hydro. This is what they envision for the future. Talk about privacy invasion, it goes much further than that. If they manage your hot water availability they will be able to regulate when you get to have a hot shower or cook a meal.



Advanced Metering Infrastructure (AMI)

A comprehensive utility metering and communications system built on bi-directional communications and open standards, offering functionality beyond AMR such as demand response and integrated turn on/off. AMI consists of four main components:

A smart meter able to collect and store electricity interval data for its own service type plus interface with and collect and store data from other devices such as other meters and home gateways. It can also initiate and respond to two-way communications with the utility.

A home gateway device able to collect data from, communicate with and control various energy-using appliances throughout the home such as air conditioners and hot water heaters. A home gateway also has two-way communications with the utility.

A data collection network that provides bi-directional communication of data and commands between the home and the utility. The collection network can be publicly or privately owned and can operate using open and proprietary standards.

An enterprise meter data management (MDM) system that provides a single, scalable repository for metering-based data along with standard interfaces to other utility systems such as CIS, OMS, GIS and workforce management.
AMI systems also support advanced capabilities such as load control, Time-of-Use and Critical Peak Pricing, and outage and restoration reporting.


https://www.itron.com/na/resourcesAndSupport/Pages/Glossary.aspx

topct
08-02-2011, 06:24 PM
I wonder what sort of reaction will take place if my consumption drops to exactly zero for long parts of the day? Are they going to assume that I have bypassed the meter instead of simply throwing the main breaker and running from solar? Do I have to let them in my house to verify that I haven't installed a meter bypass on the wall inside of the meter? I am not at all inclined to let them in my house.

My bill shows a charge just for being connected. They simply call it a "basic charge", $6 no matter what.

For any entity to come into my house requires my permission. Or a search warrant. So far here the use or non use of electricity or the amount of usage is not sufficient grounds for a warrant.

lazlo
08-02-2011, 06:50 PM
I don't think the gentleman in the video is a tinfoil hat. This is a lot like the iPhone tracking debacle, or Flash Super Cookies -- yes, they're collecting the data, yes people have been indicted based on the data (in the case of the iPhone and the power metering), but no they're not invading your privacy :rolleyes:

Not surprisingly, with all the negative press Apple got, they rushed out a patch to allow the users to clear the localization database.

And that's what the guy in the video is saying -- these big companies will exploit their infrastructure and violate your privacy unless enough consumers complain.

wierdscience
08-02-2011, 08:57 PM
And that's what the guy in the video is saying -- these big companies will exploit their infrastructure and violate your privacy unless enough consumers complain.

All of it done at the request of the various governments of the world.

Oh and there is no reason to use wireless for the reporting,all they need is a simple modem in the meter and it can phone home right over the same conductor carrying power in.

http://news.cnet.com/2100-1034_3-5163739.html

Teenage_Machinist
08-02-2011, 09:25 PM
As usual, minor worries about privacy are exagerrated, and nobody will believe any argument that it is safe.

Incindentally, while I do think it would be better to have more privacy, an awful lot of privacy fears have been big duds. The main real privacy problem is entirely self-created, from people posting incriminating evidence in a public or semipublic manner. I'm pretty bothered by how much people find out about you with, i.e. web usage. Spyware, toolbars, and hard-to-deactivate tracking in phone apps is especially bad. But these never turn out as bad as people are worried that they will.

My guess is that they would not use wireless unless there was a compelling reason (cheaper? Simpler to integrate? No massive host modems needed?) to do so.

Evan
08-02-2011, 10:19 PM
Oh and there is no reason to use wireless for the reporting,all they need is a simple modem in the meter and it can phone home right over the same conductor carrying power in.

Carrier over powerline is about the worst solution possible. It generates massive interference over a wide spectrum since the powerlines act as a giant antenna. It wipes out the lower amateur bands and interferes with non radio devices as well. Interference with non radio devices is the worst since there are no regulations to deal with it. If an RF system interferes with your balun to balun unshielded pair video system it's tough luck Charlie. You have no recourse.


As usual, minor worries about privacy are exagerrated, and nobody will believe any argument that it is safe.

I don't care how "safe" my data is. They don't have a right to collect it. Privacy is based on the principal that what you do is your own business if it doesn't cause harm to someone else. That principal is being continuously eroded. Collecting daily and even minute by minute usage data of electric power opens the door to both intentional and unintentional abuse of power.

If they come to my house with a warrant to search for a meter bypass because I turned off my power that becomes an assumption of guilt until proven innocent. That is the road to totalitarianism. This is a real slippery slope and we are already well down that slope. Sometimes the slippery slope argument is valid because it is true.

lazlo
08-02-2011, 10:42 PM
My guess is that they would not use wireless unless there was a compelling reason (cheaper? Simpler to integrate?

I would imagine that with the smart meters, they don't need to send a tech to visually read your meter. They can just drive down the street and collect all the billing stats they need.


All of it done at the request of the various governments of the world.

I don't think this kind of infrastructure is being exploited for the purposes of the government. Flash cookies certainly aren't. They're collecting usage stats because, like your credit card purchase history, they can make a ton of money selling your stats to other businesses.

Yes, local and Federal police have pulled the data, and several high profile convictions have resulted from cell phone location data (for example), but I really don't think that's why they're collecting the stats.

Mcgyver
08-02-2011, 10:44 PM
My guess is that they would not use wireless unless there was a compelling reason (cheaper? Simpler to integrate? No massive host modems needed?) to do so.

right, that article Darren was from '04....I don't think whole internet over the grid plan is going very well. My engineer associates working on this tell me it's possible but problematic, way easier to zigbee (or their own protocol) between houses than have a cell every now and again, which is how its done. zigbee or whatever protocol isn't for the homeowner to connect (at least not here, not yet) its to form their own network in a neighbourhood. This market is leader in the roll out of smart meters - 2million province wide already, and thats how they're doing it, but what goes on here may be different in other places of course.



PS: Where I live, they used 'high consumption' as an excuse for 'safety inspectors' to visit your house.. and fine you $5000 if they find ONE little thing wrong, and condem the house. Such as a missing faceplate on a junction box.

PPS: High consumption = Me trying to keep my house over 10C in the winter. All electric heat. No gas service.

The city is currently being sued due for invasion of privacy, violation of human rights, Communication of false info to 3rd partys (Yep, they even called your bank and told on everyone who 'failed' the inspection that your house was being used as a controlled substance property, and evicted renters), Also they put up signs on your property to the same effect.




Black Moons, I've been thinking about all the nefarious activity you claim has come from the power distribution utility giving out info - can you support this? I mean you may be right, but it seems extreme....signs put up on your lawn about a grow up, calling the bank? how do you know this? There are strict privacy laws in Canada and I'm wondering why these utilities would circumvent them. The people running them are very much senior bureaucrats; these are people who are typical smart capable and walk the straight and narrow. Its hard to imagine them involved in cloak and dagger stuff in contravention of privacy laws. Anyway, where did you get that info from?


I don't care how "safe" my data is. They don't have a right to collect it. Privacy is based on the principal that what you do is your own business if it doesn't cause harm to someone else.

they're not peaking through the curtain, they're selling you power....how do you figure its your data any more than theirs? two parties to a commercial transaction, and what, one's not allowed to know what they're selling and when? That they can't/shouldn't have the data holds no water....now what they do with it is a whole other matter. I Canada, are there examples of abuse or them breaking privacy legislation? That's not meant to be rhetorical, its not something i have expertise on and am curious.

The smart meter roll out is being done for one reason, to implement time of use variable rate billing. They have to , have to increase revenue somehow to pay for the aging infrastructure....which was my point to BM earlier, one way or another we will pay because there is no other way. BM says he won't tolerate sitting in the dark, I don't blame him for feeling that way....but the politicians won't ok big rate hikes, the infrastructure is aging, there's no capital budgets and reasons (like EV's) to expect demand to grow and grow. What do you think is going to happen?

lazlo
08-02-2011, 10:49 PM
they're not peaking through the curtain, they're selling you power....

According to the video (and I don't have the time or interest to Google supporting material), they're collecting usage stats, with the purpose of identifying businesses being illegally operated in residential areas. Say, for example, a machine shop in your garage, or slightly more nefariously, a grow house :)

I doubt the power sensor has the resolution to detect "if you're running your electric toothbrush", but they sure as hell can collect stats on whether/when you're home.

Mcgyver
08-02-2011, 10:57 PM
According to the video (and I don't have the time or interest to Google supporting material), they're usage stats, with the purpose of identifying grow houses or businesses being illegally operated in residential areas. Say, for example, a machine shop in your garage...
.

on this point, jurisdiction may be important - in that how utilities run (they are public here vs private in think in the US? ) is different as well as differences in privacy laws. I'm not say it doesn't go on here; curious if anyone here actually knows....only that if it is happening in the States it doesn't necessarily mean it is here

I don't get the grow op thing entirely, I have an addition that has electric heat, an electric stove (grrrrr, for the time being), and electric dryer etc... so my bill may be magnitudes more than a neighbour using gas ranges, dryer etc. Beside, we care less about drugs here, our cops waste their time with radar, it pays better :D

lazlo
08-02-2011, 11:02 PM
on this point, jurisdiction may be important - in that how utilities run

Don't know. We have weird Federal laws about what can been seen from the street. The police can search your garbage without a warrant, because you've put it out for public disposal. The meter man has legal access to your property to record the usage stats on old fashioned meters.

So can the electric company provide the authorities the receiver for the power meter, and since it's technically monitoring the load as it enters the house... That's a lot like the loophole NSA, MI-6 and Canada's secret service use on each other's citizens: they tap the trans-atlantic phone lines and provide each other with the wiretaps. :rolleyes:


I don't get the grow op thing entirely,

Don't know much about grow houses, but apparently they consume enough power that the DEA flies helicopters with FLIR (infra-red) sensors to spot grow houses from the air...

wierdscience
08-02-2011, 11:39 PM
Hate to break it to you guys,but BPL is here-

http://www.ibec.net/

I also know it's being installed right now along the Gulf Coast including where I live thanks to a brand spanking new power grid courtesy of Hurricane Katrina.

Evan
08-02-2011, 11:44 PM
I don't think this kind of infrastructure is being exploited for the purposes of the government.

It is here. The power company is government owned and one of the express reasons for this type of usage monitoring is to detect grow operations. That has been publicly put forth as a reason to justify this sort of metering.


they're not peaking through the curtain, they're selling you power....how do you figure its your data any more than theirs? two parties to a commercial transaction, and what, one's not allowed to know what they're selling and when? That they can't/shouldn't have the data holds no water....now what they do with it is a whole other matter. I Canada, are there examples of abuse or them breaking privacy legislation? That's not meant to be rhetorical, its not something i have expertise on and am curious.

Up until now they have been collecting usage data that is averaged over a two month time period. There is a very big difference between that and data averaged over a 5 minute period. The latter makes it possible to determine a lot of information about me that has absolutely nothing to do with our business relationship and is literally none of their business. I don't care whether they use it or not, they are collecting it and it can be used to build a dossier on my activities, especially when combined with other information. That is an invasion of privacy, period.

What it comes down to is how much privacy do you wish to retain? Any? Unless you are willing to give ALL your privacy rights away then the line needs to be drawn as close as possible to NO intrusion on privacy.

doctor demo
08-03-2011, 01:32 AM
It is here. The power company is government owned and one of the express reasons for this type of usage monitoring is to detect grow operations. That has been publicly put forth as a reason to justify this sort of metering.


Around this area all the grow houses that they find is not from the electric bill or usage, it is either from traffic or neighbors or the fire department. All the growers steal the power by going around the meter in various ways.

If you make guns illegal it will solve everything, just like the smart meter will stop all the grow houses, just like ......bla bla bla. How do ya stop it ?

Steve

Black_Moons
08-03-2011, 02:26 AM
Black Moons, I've been thinking about all the nefarious activity you claim has come from the power distribution utility giving out info - can you support this? I mean you may be right, but it seems extreme....signs put up on your lawn about a grow up, calling the bank? how do you know this? There are strict privacy laws in Canada and I'm wondering why these utilities would circumvent them. The people running them are very much senior bureaucrats; these are people who are typical smart capable and walk the straight and narrow. Its hard to imagine them involved in cloak and dagger stuff in contravention of privacy laws. Anyway, where did you get that info from?


http://www.bclocalnews.com/fraser_valley/missioncityrecord/opinion/letters/117320818.html
"Perhaps the most alarming feature of the program has been the expressed view of some staff and council members that some people should be charged fees because they are “obviously guilty but there isn’t sufficient evidence.” "

http://www.mission.ca/psit/ <- own website stating its done with a police officer present, And that if refused, a warrent will be brought the next day

"If the property is found to have evidence that it was recently used as a controlled substance property, the PSIT will levy a fee of $4,900 + $300 administrative. Evidence would include: unauthorized building modifications including electrical, plumbing, and mechanical system alterations, evidence of potting soil within the home, covered over windows, plant remnants, excessive soil remnants, and excessive mould / moisture damage."

How would you like to be fined $5200 because of ANY of your DIY electrical/plumbing work, Having soil (Houseplants illegal now?) covering windows (Privacy illegal now??), and mould/moisture damage (Mold/water Illegal now too??)

"When a property within the District of Mission is consuming more than the 93 kwh/day on a regular basis, BC Hydro passes this data long to PSIT. "

Thats 16A outta your 240v 100A (or 200A) service. Pertty damn small limit. If your in a well insulted house with electric heat like I do, 93kWh/day is about enough to keep your house at maybe 10c during the winter.. as long as winter does not get too cold, and you don't heat the shop/garage at all.. or the basement.. or bathroom... And don't do much laudry.. Or take baths.. showers... etc. And as I know this rental would never pass inspection due to code violating wiring and id get evicted by the do not occupie order, what am I to do? Would cost me over $2000 to move all my stuff and machines.

Don't think it would happen? heres $5200 for cucumbers:
http://www.globaltvbc.com/world/Mission+fined+growing+cucumbers/4086058/story.html

" If homeowners don’t comply, homes are tagged under the bylaw and effectively condemned as unsafe, and unsellable."


More information: http://www.rave.ca/en/news_info/223068/canada/

"The district put a Do Not Occupy order on Banfield's property, but she
is refusing to leave and says her house is safe to inhabit"

Theres other storys about another guy being fined $5200 for 'bad hot tub wiring'

And theres no review process, So once they say you get the $5200 fine, thats it. Pay it or the city effectively kicks you outta your own home.

http://missionmessenger.com/MoL1.pdf
"he statement of claim notes that the District of Mission communicated the false reports of drug activity to third parties including plaintiffs’ mortgage holders, property in-surers and prospective home purchasers."

http://www.mapinc.org/drugnews/v11/n374/a02.html

"RCMP officers seized two computers belonging to Coun. Jenny Stevens and three computers belonging to former councillor Ron Taylor on May 9 after allegations that information pertaining to the marijuana bylaw and the hiring of a public relations firm, Laura Balance Media Group, was leaked from an in-camera council meeting.
The confiscations led to a protest of up to 200 people (out of only 30,000) outside Mission's Municipal Hall on May 16, with some residents calling for Mayor James Atebe's resignation. "

http://www.bclocalnews.com/fraser_valley/missioncityrecord/news/125367333.html <- lawsuit served against the city


"Mayor James Atebe has publicly apologized for the 216 homes that were inspected and were found not to be controlled substance properties, including a personal apology for 15 residences that were initially levied fines before being overturned in a review based on insufficient evidence"

Note thats note a review process, thats just damage control after they suspended the program due to public outcry. And by outcry I mean the townsfoke storming city hall and protesting.

What about the nearly 300 homes that DID just pay up? How many of them where actualy 'grow ops' And how many just had some soil on the floor, a few code violations in the wiring, Some water damage, Curtains, Or any of the other things they find justifable to fine you 1/4 the cost of a new car for a 30 minute inspection?

"He said the three-year battle with the district to get them to acknowledge their concerns only began when they threatened a lawsuit."

What ever happened to innocent UNLESS proven guilty?
Now its 'Guilty based on circumstantial evidence that has many other valid and totaly legal explinations, With no judge or jury, No oversight, No review, And no direct evidence links. Oh, And the fines pay for the program, So if you don't charge enough people, your fired'

Arcane
08-03-2011, 03:31 AM
It's SOP here, and has been for a long time, for our billing computer to automatically check for reads that exceed high or low limits. Low reads could mean a stopped or slow meter (sometimes customer is just away on vacation too) and high reads usually were the result of a wrong read. Police would come to us to find out just how much power suspected grow ops were using but AFAIK the corp never narced anyone out to them, unless we caught them actually stealing power. (Some energy thieves were quite innovative in their methods..and quite the risk takers to boot!)

If the electric utilities management is claiming they "need" to install Smart meters to find grow operations, they are either out and out liars or stupid. I don't know which is worse.

From information a co-worker (ex Manitoba Hydro worker) told me, I know Manitoba used to, and probably still do, associate every meter they set with a transformer. When more than a certain amount of Kwhrs was used in a time frame, their system would automatically kick out a notice that resulted in attention given to that transformer which usually resulted in a capacity increase. I can't recall if he said they did similar with the demand.

I believe the big push for Smart meters is for reasons other than any we are being told. I believe we will start to see time-of-day usage fees and possibly demand charges where none exists presently...maybe even rates that reflect each individual customer's PF. I also suspect large commercial/industrial users to get their billing adjusted somewhat. Here most are on a monthly demand charge. I could see that changing to some other time frame, possibly daily along with time-of-day usage rates.

The electrical grid is becoming used closer to capacity every day and such fees would supposedly provide incentive to customers to even out their usage. This would help in the short run but sure as there are little green apples the day will come when capacity is maxed out and major rebuilding will have to be done (IMO of course).

OTOH, Smart meters with the on/off capability would be real time and money savers for electrical utilities in the long run.

Arcane
08-03-2011, 03:40 AM
Black_Moons, that is appalling!!!

dp
08-03-2011, 04:10 AM
What it comes down to is how much privacy do you wish to retain? Any? Unless you are willing to give ALL your privacy rights away then the line needs to be drawn as close as possible to NO intrusion on privacy.

That's how I feel about Google.

Mcgyver
08-03-2011, 08:18 AM
BM, thanks for all that, I thought you were on a bit of tear but instead looks like its real, wow, that is something.

Another aspect that is disturbing is the justice of peace thing....these people imo are just barely qualified to hear your parking ticket case and should not be making decisions like whether to issue a search warrant.

A.K. Boomer
08-03-2011, 08:38 AM
If it took grow lights to make meth then id be all for it,

I just hope they don't find out that im charging my capacitors and shocking my gerbils with them --- that's all I need is for peta to get involved --- they need their electric-shock-therapy or they start biting their finger nails down to the quick,

How ironic,,,
I believe their behavior is due to the EM fields that the electricity is creating in the first place...

Spare me the richard gear jokes - I said gerbils not hamsters...:p

Rosco-P
08-03-2011, 09:27 AM
[QUOTE=Black_MoonsWhen a property within the District of Mission is consuming more than the 93 kwh/day on a regular basis, BC Hydro passes this data long to PSIT. "

Thats 16A outta your 240v 100A (or 200A) service. Pertty damn small limit. If your in a well insulted house with electric heat like I do, 93kWh/day is about enough to keep your house at maybe 10c during the winter.. as long as winter does not get too cold, and you don't heat the shop/garage at all.. or the basement.. or bathroom... And don't do much laudry.. Or take baths.. showers... etc. [/QUOTE]

93KwH/day?? 93,000 watts? That's quite a bit. Even in an all electric house, I find that unbelievable. I'm in a different climate zone, but I can run my house/shop and have power to spare for my neighbor with my 25Kw generator.

Dr Stan
08-03-2011, 09:50 AM
I thought this was a machining forum, not one for conspiracy theories. Must have gotten the wrong idea when I signed up.:rolleyes:

aboard_epsilon
08-03-2011, 09:51 AM
93KwH/day?? 93,000 watts? That's quite a bit. Even in an all electric house, I find that unbelievable. I'm in a different climate zone, but I can run my house/shop and have power to spare for my neighbor with my 25Kw generator.
its ten times what i use ..yes agree, its high

but you could use that much in a day if you had a severe cold spell and you only had electric heating

all the best.markj

A.K. Boomer
08-03-2011, 10:13 AM
I thought this was a machining forum, not one for conspiracy theories. Must have gotten the wrong idea when I signed up.:rolleyes:



everyone seems to have a different perspective about that --- I didn't think it was a place for whining either:rolleyes: yet here we are...

Rosco-P
08-03-2011, 12:01 PM
If you live in the boonies and you're worried about the government "monitoring" your movements, why not bite the bullet and go off grid. Others have cut the cord, it can be done. You may not be able to live a life of electronic and electrical luxury, but if it reduces the personal stress and worry that the Federales, Men in Black or Mounties are going to swoop in, shut you down and evict you from your own home, it seems worth it.

tdmidget
08-03-2011, 12:49 PM
Moon 16 amps at 240 volts is 3840 watts, not 93000.

vincemulhollon
08-03-2011, 12:52 PM
93KwH/day?? 93,000 watts? That's quite a bit. Even in an all electric house, I find that unbelievable. I'm in a different climate zone, but I can run my house/shop and have power to spare for my neighbor with my 25Kw generator.

A KWH is a unit of energy, a kilowatt for one hour. You get about 30 of them from a gallon of gas or more or less any liquid petroleum fuel. A KW is a unit of power, your 25 KW gen makes 25 KW while it runs. Its probably burning about a gallon per hour at full blast within an order of magnitude...

93 KWH is a pretty pitiful amount of energy. That's less than 4 KW continuously and I can see how you could freeze to death in an electric house that only draws 4 KW. As a point of comparison, just the furnace blower in my house draws a KW... So just moving the cold air, not even heating it up, draws about a quarter of that.

I suppose theoretically you could build a house that can heat itself in winter with less than 3 gallons of heating oil or propane per day, theoretically. Assuming of course that you use no electricity for any other purpose whatsoever, like cooking, lights, TV, clothes dryer, fans, etc.

Evan
08-03-2011, 01:18 PM
If you live in the boonies and you're worried about the government "monitoring" your movements, why not bite the bullet and go off grid.

All I want is for them to not put a transmitter on my place. That will have the incidental effect of not allowing real time control of my electrical system. Too bad.

Black_Moons
08-03-2011, 01:57 PM
its ten times what i use ..yes agree, its high
but you could use that much in a day if you had a severe cold spell and you only had electric heating
all the best.markj

Wrong.
93kW/h means 93kW, used for an hour.
More to the point, Lets devide by 24 hours in a day = 3.8kW continious draw

Lets devide by 240v and we get.. 16amps! thats right, All it takes is ONE load of 16A running 24/7 to run over the 'limit'
For the record, JUST the 240v loads I have in my house:
Dryer: 30A
Stove: 50A
Hot water heater: 20A
Baseboard heaters: 15A, 15A, 10A, 10A, 5A
Lathe: 10A
Mill: 10A
Air compressor: 20A
Welder: 20A

So basicly, Any ONE of my major appliances running 24/7 would easily go over the limit, Combine a few hours of cooking, hour of cloths drying, 2 hours of heating hot water for the cloths, 2 hours for heating water for bath/shower, A few hours of lathe/mill use, and im over the limit before I even talk about warming the house, having any lights on, having my PC on, etc etc.

If using more then 16A was 'unsafe' as they say, Why do I have a 100A service thats allready been derated to 80% of the wiring capacity?

Since when is using 16% (8% if your a house with a modren 200A service) of what the countrys ELECTRICAL CODE says is safe, grounds for customary home invasion looking for anything that 'Could be evidence' of crime/unsafty, And then charging you a $5200 fine just for signs that there could be crime, but not nearly enough evidence to say... Stand up in any coart on earth, Hence why they don't arrest you, And theres no review process.

PS: "93KwH/day?? 93,000 watts? That's quite a bit. Even in an all electric house, I find that unbelievable. I'm in a different climate zone, but I can run my house/shop and have power to spare for my neighbor with my 25Kw generator."
a 25Kw generator can produce 600KwH/day. (25kW * 24 hours = 600 KwHOURS/day) So thats over 6 *times* the limit.

aboard_epsilon
08-03-2011, 03:32 PM
lol ..never been told off before for agreeing with someone :)

all the best.markj

Black_Moons
08-03-2011, 04:20 PM
lol ..never been told off before for agreeing with someone :)

all the best.markj

I highly doubt you only use 9.3kW/h a day, Unless you have gas heat, Gas hot water, gas dryer, gas stove and gas lighting. :P
Thats only 380W continous draw. My PC+monitor uses more then that. Modren large LCD's will use 200W. older large CRT's will use 300W+

aboard_epsilon
08-03-2011, 05:06 PM
just had a look

well im averaging 12.17 units a day on my last bill that was March 1st until June 3rd ..total used units 1157

since then ..i now turn the computer off at night ..so my next bill should be less units used ..but not necessarily cheaper as the greedy pigs have just put the prices up by 18 percent

for months ive been eating out ..and the fridge freezer is empty and turned off ..

if i didn't use my workshop ..that lot would be a lot cheaper

just lights ..TV and computer really..have an immersion heater 2.5 kw or there abouts ..that's on a timer that comes on for 20 mins at 7 am ..and 20 mins at 4:30 pm

i try

when i said ten times ..was just a wild guess

its actually 7.64 times smaller

btw that bill is with crt monitor ..my lcd one packed up in January

all the best.markj

topct
08-03-2011, 05:11 PM
Is there an antibiotic that can cure paranoia?

No Gene there isn't. There are medications that can mask it. But there doesn't seem to be an actual cure.

So we're stuck with it then?

Yes Gene, I'm afraid so.

I hear you.

You know their going to think your nuts?

So what?

You don't care?

No.

Willy
08-03-2011, 05:22 PM
Who was it that said:

"paranoia...gunna destroy ya"?

danlb
08-03-2011, 05:50 PM
This is from Itron, the company that is supplying the smart meters for BC Hydro. This is what they envision for the future. Talk about privacy invasion, it goes much further than that. If they manage your hot water availability they will be able to regulate when you get to have a hot shower or cook a meal.


It's interesting to see what people deem to be an invasion of privacy. It's really an artificial construct and therefor varies from one jurisdiction to another.

In my country, privacy is not what you WANT to be kept private, it is what you have a reasonable expectation to be private. By that definition any thing that you do not zealously guard is not private. Neither is anything that the authorities have specified to be fair game, like the trunk of my car.

So is it an invasion of privacy if the power company knows when you wake up? Probably not, since you turn on the lights (visible through your curtains from the neighbor's vantage point) and may even go outside to get the paper. It's not really private information.

Other countries have different standards. Often there are very strict rules about specific areas and very vague rules about others.

I'm much more concerned about the power company deciding to regulate my usage. That would suck, since I'm a power hog and hate when I have to reboot everything.

Dan

philbur
08-03-2011, 06:15 PM
Depends on where you live, the size of your house, how well insulated it is and how many people live there.

I'm sitting here looking at my electricity bill. My total consumption for the months of December and January last year was 2,700 and 2,250 kWh respectively. On average that's approximately 3.33 kw continuous. The house is on the west coast of Norway, 190 square meters and totally electic.

Phil:)

PS: Forgot the 35 square meter insulated workshop continuosly maintained at 18 deg C. 24/7.


A KWH is a unit of energy, a kilowatt for one hour. You get about 30 of them from a gallon of gas or more or less any liquid petroleum fuel. A KW is a unit of power, your 25 KW gen makes 25 KW while it runs. Its probably burning about a gallon per hour at full blast within an order of magnitude...

93 KWH is a pretty pitiful amount of energy. That's less than 4 KW continuously and I can see how you could freeze to death in an electric house that only draws 4 KW. As a point of comparison, just the furnace blower in my house draws a KW... So just moving the cold air, not even heating it up, draws about a quarter of that.

I suppose theoretically you could build a house that can heat itself in winter with less than 3 gallons of heating oil or propane per day, theoretically. Assuming of course that you use no electricity for any other purpose whatsoever, like cooking, lights, TV, clothes dryer, fans, etc.

Evan
08-03-2011, 06:55 PM
So is it an invasion of privacy if the power company knows when you wake up? Probably not, since you turn on the lights (visible through your curtains from the neighbor's vantage point) and may even go outside to get the paper. It's not really private information.


Nobody can see my windows and we don't have paper or mail delivery. No water meters, no garbage pickup, no street lights and no pizza delivery. Most of the people that live out this way like it that way. We all value our privacy and smart meters constitute a truly major invasion of that privacy from our perspective. It may be very different from the viewpoint of a city dweller but that isn't our viewpoint. Privacy is a relative concept and we live here with a high level of privacy. Even my internet connection provides a degree of privacy. Since I am on a satellite connection my actual physical location shows up as Vancouver which is where the base station is located.

Black_Moons
08-03-2011, 07:13 PM
So is it an invasion of privacy if the power company knows when you wake up? Probably not, since you turn on the lights (visible through your curtains from the neighbor's vantage point) and may even go outside to get the paper. It's not really private information.
Dan

I live in a very small city. My neighbors can not see my windows as I bought a property surrounded by trees and bush. I do not turn on lights when I wake up (its daytime), I do not check the paper first thing (Why bother?), When I wake up is my own business and I like it that way. I do not want anyone knowing when I am awake or when I am asleep, And If I wanted someone to know id put up a sign. I don't because it would not benifit me in any way, and could be used in numerious ways against me, By the government, by the power companys, and by criminals.

And lets note that companys and the government have a VERY poor record of security for any of thier information, Even information that SHOULD be highly secure, So What makes you think they will have any security on information they don't think matters? They might put it all up on a public website for all you know. (Worse has been done with passwords/logins and personal identifyable information)

danlb
08-03-2011, 07:41 PM
Nobody can see my windows and we don't have paper or mail delivery. No water meters, no garbage pickup, no street lights and no pizza delivery.

My mistake. I could have sworn you had a thread where you altered the angle of a porch light to be nicer to your neighbors. I also was under the impression that there were public streets in your area where casual passers-by could see your house, even if from a distance. You must be even more remote than I thought.

I suggest that personal information (as opposed to private information) is not really that important to a third party unless they want to do you harm. If they are that serious, they are not going to rely on a smart meter to figure out when it's safe to break in an hurt you.

Now if you are REALLY paranoid about it, just obfuscate their readings with some simple timers and a few lamps or heaters. on-off-on-off My house is automated enough that things turn on and off all the time, even while I nap.

Dan

P.S. you don't get "privacy" by using a satellite unless it's encrypted, and that encryption ends at the satellite provider. It's no more private than any other encrypted connection. The location IS obfuscated, but your exact location is on file somewhere by virtue of being a publicly funded project.

Evan
08-03-2011, 09:22 PM
My mistake. I could have sworn you had a thread where you altered the angle of a porch light to be nicer to your neighbors. I also was under the impression that there were public streets in your area where casual passers-by could see your house, even if from a distance. You must be even more remote than I thought.

Nope, but I wish my closest neighbour would put a shade on his yard light so it doesn't illuminate the trees in his direction. My house isn't visible from the road.


P.S. you don't get "privacy" by using a satellite unless it's encrypted, and that encryption ends at the satellite provider. It's no more private than any other encrypted connection. The location IS obfuscated, but your exact location is on file somewhere by virtue of being a publicly funded project.

The connection is encrypted. My location is obfuscated. My address is a mailbox 3 kilometres down the road from here. I was however referring to my location as determined by IP address.

The fact remains that the information can be used for purposes other than intended. Once they collect that information they (think) they own it and are free to resell it for profit. The same thing happens when you buy groceries using a scannable discount card. To assume that the collected information won't be used for any other purpose is the height of naivety.



This isn't a matter of paranoia, this kind of information collection and exchange for profit is rampant. The advent of extremely cheap and powerful computers has made it possible to collect and collate virtually unlimited amounts of information on everyone. There are already numerous anecdotes relating to smart meters and negative consequences from their installation. They have a disturbing tendency to catch on fire for instance. Since they contain a considerable number of electronic parts that isn't at all surprising. The old Sangamo type meter contains no electronics other than a coil of wire, not prone to failure.

They can also fail in ways that may result in incorrect meter readings to the detriment of the power user. The mechanical type can only fail to the users benefit. There are a number of stories of smart meter failure resulting in ridiculous billing which the power companies refuse to adjust.

Read some more here about a Ham radio operator's experience with the local power company in Ontario. What is especially important is the power company's attempts at character assasination and threats.

http://www.ve3ncq.ca/wordpress/?page_id=10

Mad Scientist
08-03-2011, 09:40 PM
In my area they are trying to sell smart meters by say that it will help balance out the load by allowing the power company to remotely shut off our air conditioners, etc. Oh but they say they will only shut off power for 15-20 minutes at a time that way you probably will not even notice its not running.
Will at least up to the time they decide 15-20 minutes is not enough and go to maybe 1 or 2 hours or more. Of course there is a solution to this and that’s simply to build more power stations. But that would not allow bureaucrats to dictate how we are to live.

Black_Moons
08-03-2011, 09:58 PM
In my area they are trying to sell smart meters by say that it will help balance out the load by allowing the power company to remotely shut off our air conditioners, etc. Oh but they say they will only shut off power for 15-20 minutes at a time that way you probably will not even notice its not running.
Will at least up to the time they decide 15-20 minutes is not enough and go to maybe 1 or 2 hours or more. Of course there is a solution to this and that’s simply to build more power stations. But that would not allow bureaucrats to dictate how we are to live.

Just be glad you don't live with rolling blackouts to 'conserve power'.. Im guessing causing most people to turn the fridges and AC way cooler to compensate, hot water tank hotter, and just do everything they used to do in the time they have power.. Big diffrence would be.. you'd be out lights, And anything really critical.. Like, Fans to keep non AC houses from cooking. Oxygen consentrators for people with breathing problems. And seriously inconvianced.

'Rolling blackouts are a common or even a normal daily event in many developing countries where electricity generation capacity is underfunded or infrastructure is poorly managed. Rolling blackouts in developed countries are rare because demand is accurately forecasted, adequate infrastructure investment is scheduled and networks are well managed; such events are considered an unacceptable failure to plan and can cause significant political damage to responsible governments'

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rolling_blackout#United_States

'In many East Coast states (such as New York State and New Jersey), "brownouts" rather than rolling blackouts are implemented during power emergencies' Heh. "Down to only 90v today! damnit.."

lazlo
08-04-2011, 12:50 AM
Just be glad you don't live with rolling blackouts to 'conserve power'..

'Rolling blackouts are a common or even a normal daily event in many developing countries where electricity generation capacity is underfunded or infrastructure is poorly managed.

That's ironic, since the infamous California blackouts of 2000 were because Enron was shutting down power plants to manipulate the energy market :)

At the time of the blackouts, California had 45 Gigawatts of generating capacity, and peak demand was 28 Gigawatts. Ain't capitalism great? :rolleyes:

Black_Moons
08-04-2011, 01:09 AM
That's ironic, since the infamous California blackouts of 2000 were because Enron was shutting down power plants to manipulate the energy market :)

At the time of the blackouts, California had 45 Gigawatts of generating capacity, and peak demand was 28 Gigawatts. Ain't capitalism great? :rolleyes:

Yes. "such events are considered an unacceptable failure to plan and can cause significant political damage to responsible governments"

jkilroy
08-04-2011, 08:03 AM
Since someone asked about law enforcement requirements surrounding smart meters. The system had to be able to provide law enforcement agencies with *real time* access to data without allowing anyone working on the system to be able to know that anyone was being monitored or who was being monitored. Of course this monitoring could not be evident to the legit users of the data either. So, basically, we had to provide the feds a private gateway that would allow them to monitor anyone at any time, in real time, without anyone, including us, knowing about it.

wierdscience
08-04-2011, 08:54 AM
In the old Kremlin the Politburo living quarters were served by two elevators which connected to all the quarters on every floor.One was used by the tenants and the other by the KJB.People,sometimes entire families would go missing at night.

How long before they want their own back door into our homes?

Mad Scientist
08-04-2011, 08:59 AM
That is no different then your cell phone where the government is able to turn it on at any time without your knowledge and listen in on whatever you’re doing. Also it can download any information you might have stored and determine your location. But do worry the government is your friend it would never do anything to harm you, just trust big brother.

Rosco-P
08-04-2011, 09:04 AM
Edited for brevity:

Wrong.
For the record, JUST the 240v loads I have in my house:
Dryer: 30A
Stove: 50A
Hot water heater: 20A
Baseboard heaters: 15A, 15A, 10A, 10A, 5A
Lathe: 10A
Mill: 10A
Air compressor: 20A
Welder: 20A

So basically, Any ONE of my major appliances running 24/7 would easily go over the limit, PS: "93KwH/day??

I'm in a different climate zone, but I can run my house/shop and have power to spare for my neighbor with my 25Kw generator."
a 25Kw generator can produce 600KwH/day. (25kW * 24 hours = 600 KwHOURS/day) So thats over 6 *times* the limit.

You rent an all electric house? How unfortunate. You heating loads may be "on" 24/7, but they have thermostats and aren't consuming power 24/7. The electric heat cycles on and off, only on enough to make up for the heat loss in the house. Same for the electric range, washer and dryer and hot water heater, intermittant loads. Lathe, mill, welder? You aren't a production shop, are you? Your machinery isn't running at full load either, so those loads don't amount to a piss hole in snow.

Are you sure the trigger point isn't 93Kw in an hour? I can see where a "grow house" with twenty 1500w metal halide fixtures (250a @120vac), ventilation blowers, heating would start to present an steady load that would raise some red flags at the power company.

Mad Scientist
08-04-2011, 09:20 AM
How long before they want their own back door into our homes?
Don’t need the back door, they will just use the front door.
The Indiana Supreme Court decided that the police no longer require a warrant to enter your home and that you have no right to resist them.
Constitution? We don’t need no stinking constitution.:(

wierdscience
08-04-2011, 09:49 AM
That's ironic, since the infamous California blackouts of 2000 were because Enron was shutting down power plants to manipulate the energy market :)

At the time of the blackouts, California had 45 Gigawatts of generating capacity, and peak demand was 28 Gigawatts. Ain't capitalism great? :rolleyes:
Tell the rest of the story:rolleyes:

Cali had 45gw of capacity,but 15gw was idled and not producing.Coal is evil so they burned NG,the power produced was pegged to the price of NG which Enron was also a player in.When Davis refused to complete the deregulation process two things happened.It created a spot market where Calis IOU's could not engage in long term contracts with producers.And maintaining government price controls on Cali's public utilites meant they had to buy power in the spot market at the inflated price which bankrupted them.Davis even admitted this when he stated"if I could raise utility rates I could fix this problem in 20 minutes"
The final straw came when the drought hit the PNW,Cali had been buying excess hydro capacity from the PNW,but when the drought hit that excess went away.
In all 169,000 rate payers were effected by blackouts,small in comparison to the total number,but hey,objects in the media seem larger than they really are.
So,in a nutshell It would have been much more difficult for Enron to F--k Cali if Cali hadn't bent over and asked for it.Not defending Enron here,just not pretending Cali's stupidity didn't contribute.

lazlo
08-04-2011, 10:12 AM
Cali had 45gw of capacity,but 15gw was idled and not producing.

Your recollection is very different than every other account I've read Darin.
Enron owned most of the power plants (and PG&E), and there are audio transcripts and internal memos from Enron executives telling them to shut the power plants down.

Ken Lay (who was convinced of 10 counts of securities fraud) was famously quoted as saying:


"In the final analysis, it doesn't matter what you crazy people in California do [to re-regulate the energy market], because I got smart guys who can always figure out how to make money."




Edit: I just looked it up, and according to PG&E, California only had 10 coal-fired generating units at eight locations in 2000, with a combined total 439 Megawatts of capacity. That was 0.7% of the state's total electric generating capacity.

rowbare
08-04-2011, 10:19 AM
Are you sure the trigger point isn't 93Kw in an hour? I can see where a "grow house" with twenty 1500w metal halide fixtures (250a @120vac), ventilation blowers, heating would start to present an steady load that would raise some red flags at the power company.
Think of what the hydro bill for that would be. Let's use 10 cents a kilowatt hour as a base price... so $9.30 an hour, $223 a day, $6696 a month...

That's almost as much as forgetting to turn data roaming off on your smart phone when traveling!

No wonder the grow ops steal electricity.

bob

lazlo
08-04-2011, 10:32 AM
No wonder the grow ops steal electricity.

Plus, they keep forgetting to pay the bill :p

Willy
08-04-2011, 11:22 AM
Plus, they keep forgetting to pay the bill :p

Well maybe not directly, but in California alone it amounts to a 14 billion dollar boost to the economy.
That's a lot of....uh...ah...what were we talking about anyway?:D

Black_Moons
08-04-2011, 12:36 PM
Think of what the hydro bill for that would be. Let's use 10 cents a kilowatt hour as a base price... so $9.30 an hour, $223 a day, $6696 a month...

That's almost as much as forgetting to turn data roaming off on your smart phone when traveling!

No wonder the grow ops steal electricity.

bob

... WRONG.
When did I say 93kW HOUR PER HOUR?
I said 93kW hour per *DAY*
$9.30 per *day*
30 day month = $279 a month. Or about what it costs to electricaly heat most homes if its just 0~10c, let alone subzero.

Remind me never to let you guys do my taxes.

Black_Moons
08-04-2011, 12:40 PM
Edited for brevity:

Are you sure the trigger point isn't 93Kw in an hour? I can see where a "grow house" with twenty 1500w metal halide fixtures (250a @120vac), ventilation blowers, heating would start to present an steady load that would raise some red flags at the power company.

I am SURE.

Multiple news articles, and the citys own website CONFIRM:
http://www.mission.ca/psit/
"Properties, which exceed the mandated threshold of 93 kwh/day, would be reviewed and inspected."

danlb
08-04-2011, 01:01 PM
Tell the rest of the story:rolleyes:

Davis even admitted this when he stated"if I could raise utility rates I could fix this problem in 20 minutes"


Ok, let's do the rest of the story. I worked for PG&E at the time.

1) the local power companies were the ones that pushed for the deregulation that allowed Enron and other competitors to dominate supplies.
2) The industry was deregulated with the normal hobbles on the former monopolies so that they could not abuse their power. They had to sell all generating capacity and could not control the market by forcing long term contracts on suppliers. This is the same type of thing done to the telephone companies after AT&T was broken up.
3) Enron and several others created artificial shortages by scheduling generator downtime at the same time.


Davis had nothing to do with the legislation that allowed Enron to commit the fraud, and the governor had no power to change the laws that set up the situation. That was up to the state legislature. The fact that Enron was manipulating the interstate power transfer made the FEDERAL government responsible for stopping the fraud, which they eventually did.

It was really stupid to sell the generating capacity to private companies and then expect those private companies to willingly sell the power to PG&E at anything less than premium prices. I have no idea why the power companies pushed for that model.

Dan

aboard_epsilon
08-04-2011, 01:08 PM
i don't know anything about growing pot

but why don't the guys just do it in the summer months ..

ans seed hedge rows with it ..

that way ....no maintenance ..hopefully for them no one else knows where it is ..

and they can harvest it ..anytime it's ready ..

and not be directly connected with it ..cause its not in their home

so what am i missing

all the best.markj

Forestgnome
08-04-2011, 01:09 PM
Your recollection is very different than every other account I've read Darin.
Enron owned most of the power plants (and PG&E), and there are audio transcripts and internal memos from Enron executives telling them to shut the power plants down.

Ken Lay (who was convinced of 10 counts of securities fraud) was famously quoted as saying:


"In the final analysis, it doesn't matter what you crazy people in California do [to re-regulate the energy market], because I got smart guys who can always figure out how to make money."




Edit: I just looked it up, and according to PG&E, California only had 10 coal-fired generating units at eight locations in 2000, with a combined total 439 Megawatts of capacity. That was 0.7% of the state's total electric generating capacity.

Weirdscience is right. What Davis set up was a bastard child of regulation and deregulation. Sometimes a compromise is worse than either extreme.

Evan
08-04-2011, 01:25 PM
so what am i missing

It's easy to spot via satellite, even small plots. It has a particular colour.


Re unpaid power bills, BC Hydro estimates losses at over 150 million per year to grow ops. The new meters are able to detect a bypass even if the meter is removed from the circuit. The meter contains a large capacitor that powers the transmitter. If the meter loses power it immediately sends a "power loss" signal before it runs out of power. If it isn't removed from the circuit it also reports if the power consumption drops to zero. That is why I am wondering what will happen if I turn off my power for a while and run from solar.

Mcgyver
08-04-2011, 01:30 PM
Ken Lay (who was convinced of 10 counts of securities fraud) was famously quoted as saying:


"In the final analysis, it doesn't matter what you crazy people in California do [to re-regulate the energy market], because I got smart guys who can always figure out how to make money."
.

proferrng Enron as an example is more an indictment of regulation, soocialism and central planning than capitalism...the skullduggery comes from trying to thwart those systems....good old fashion capitalism would simply just look you in the eye and say pay up or freeze in dark :D

seriously though, someone convicted of 10 counts of fraud is not a good argument against capitalism or any other system; they're only iconic of only one economic approach to attracting wealth - that being the criminal way.

danlb
08-04-2011, 01:34 PM
Weirdscience is right. What Davis set up was a bastard child of regulation and deregulation. Sometimes a compromise is worse than either extreme.


I hate seeing a good guy being maligned unfairly. Please point to even one piece of legislation or one copy of committee meeting minutes that showed that Davis set up any of the energy deregulation. Extra points if you can find legislation that he actually authored or sponsored to set up the deregulation. Just one reputable source. Please?

Davis was shafted so that his opponents could kick him out. It was a masterful use of repeating propaganda and false allegations till it was believed. It only works when the voters don't know enough about the government. If they believe that the President can deliver tax cuts by himself, or that governors make the laws, then they are ripe for being used.

Dan (back to our regularly scheduled OT thread. Sorry about the rant.)

aboard_epsilon
08-04-2011, 01:36 PM
It's easy to spot via satellite, even small plots. It has a particular colour.

.

that's why i said hedge-rows ..you could plant one plant every say 10 yards ...or bunches of 5 or so, every 50 yards..but not consitant distances apart

thousands of miles of them in the uk

most looking like this

http://www.noticenature.ie/files/hedgeweb.jpg

all the best.markj

Evan
08-04-2011, 01:38 PM
Have you looked closely at any of the hedgerows lately? :D

lazlo
08-04-2011, 01:39 PM
Ok, let's do the rest of the story. I worked for PG&E at the time.

3) Enron and several others created artificial shortages by scheduling generator downtime at the same time.

Davis had nothing to do with the legislation that allowed Enron to commit the fraud, and the governor had no power to change the laws that set up the situation. That was up to the state legislature. The fact that Enron was manipulating the interstate power transfer made the FEDERAL government responsible for stopping the fraud, which they eventually did.

We keep having these laissez-faire capitalism debacles every 10 years like clockwork: we tried deregulating the savings and loan industry in the 80's, which led to Charles Keating and the Junk Bond/Savings & Loan Crisis, deregulated the energy market, which led to the Enron follies, legalized credit default swaps, which Warren Buffet famously called "weapons of financial mass destruction" and caused the world-wide financial meltdown of 2008, and deregulated deepwater drilling protocols, which led to the BP spill.

Corporations aren't evil, per se -- they're organizations created specifically to maximize profits. If you put your arm in the lion's cage, you shouldn't be surprised if he rips it off. If you deregulate a billion dollar industry, corporations will exploit it to the fullest extent. In all these cases, the corporations responsible for the damage paid millions of dollars in bribes to craft precisely targeted deregulation, and then exploited the loophole for billions. Great return on investment :rolleyes:

ENRON'S MANY STRANDS: THE POLITICS; Enron, Preaching Deregulation, Worked the Statehouse Circuit

http://www.nytimes.com/2002/02/09/business/enron-s-many-strands-politics-enron-preaching-deregulation-worked-statehouse.html?src=pm

danlb
08-04-2011, 01:40 PM
It's easy to spot via satellite, even small plots. It has a particular colour.


Re unpaid power bills, BC Hydro estimates losses at over 150 million per year to grow ops. The new meters are able to detect a bypass even if the meter is removed from the circuit. The meter contains a large capacitor that powers the transmitter. If the meter loses power it immediately sends a "power loss" signal before it runs out of power. If it isn't removed from the circuit it also reports if the power consumption drops to zero. That is why I am wondering what will happen if I turn off my power for a while and run from solar.

In MY area, they compare the load on a branch to the billed usage for the houses served by that branch. I forget how many houses are aggregated at the branch meter. If the branch meter shows 1000kwH of energy was used, and the bills total only 900 kwH they know there is a problem of some sort. Problems include high resistance shorts and malfunctioning meters.

Dan ( I wish I could remember the proper term for the 'branch'. Sigh)

macona
08-04-2011, 01:41 PM
i don't know anything about growing pot

but why don't the guys just do it in the summer months ..

ans seed hedge rows with it ..

that way ....no maintenance ..hopefully for them no one else knows where it is ..

and they can harvest it ..anytime it's ready ..

and not be directly connected with it ..cause its not in their home

so what am i missing

all the best.markj

People do that. Helicopters usually spot the fields. Or hikers find them.

There were three housed busted this morning in Portland. The were all owned by the same people (Chinese nationals) and the houses had been remodeled specifically for the operation.

http://southeastportland.katu.com/news/crime/442242-police-multi-home-pot-grow-busts-net-2000-plants?utm_base=storylink

garagemark
08-04-2011, 02:01 PM
Growing a plant here and there is not profitable. Don't believe everything you hear on TV that a single plant is worth thousands and thousands of dollars. That's hype. The only way for a grower to make any money is to grow as large a plot as can be 'hidden', and to work the plants as they are growing. It is also important to get rid of any male plant and to selectively trim the females in certain places to maximize the yield.

Being able to at least start plants indoors with grow lights is quite advantageous. But being able to pamper them for their life span is purely profitable.

Many years ago......

Black_Moons
08-04-2011, 02:08 PM
In MY area, they compare the load on a branch to the billed usage for the houses served by that branch. I forget how many houses are aggregated at the branch meter. If the branch meter shows 1000kwH of energy was used, and the bills total only 900 kwH they know there is a problem of some sort. Problems include high resistance shorts and malfunctioning meters.

Dan ( I wish I could remember the proper term for the 'branch'. Sigh)

Unless your smart meter says your drawing 1000kwH and the branch meter only says 500kwH, then they ignore it and do absolutely nothing while the money rolls in.

http://www.google.ca/#hl=en&source=hp&q=smart+meter+overcharging

http://www.reuters.com/article/2011/05/02/idUS406816379420110502
"Monday afternoon, the company announced it will replace 1,600 of its smart meters, which were manufactured by Landis+Gyr, because of a defect that causes the miscalculation of customer energy bills. PG&E says the faulty meters were occasionally running fast, and overcharging customers."

"PG&E will offer full refunds for customers that were overcharged, and PG&E says the average refund will be $40"

Not that it knows who was overcharged and for how much.

http://www.wfaa.com/news/consumer/Oncor-1827-overcharged-after-getting-smart-meters-89722737.html
"Some customers got charged for an extra 5,500 kilowatt hours or an additional $660 on their bills, based on $.12 per kWh rate, Schein added"
(And you only get a refund of $40 average! great)

http://www.khou.com/home/CenterPoint-5200-smart-meters-overcharged-Houston-area-customers-89018122.html
'CenterPoint: 5,200 smart meters overcharged Houston-area customers' (Diffrent then the other storys)


http://www.optimumenergy.com/how-to-test-your-smart-meter-for-accuracy/
"The problem now is that I’ve been reading many stories about Ontario Hydro customers discovering that their electric bills have nearly doubled since Ontario Hydro installed their new smart meters"

Oddly enough, the 1500+ case was when meters 'overheated over 100 degrees'.. Just when people start using air conditioning and EXPECT higher bills. Geee, What a conviant suituation!

Also read reports of more then 1 person being electrocuted after smart meter install, No 'certification' given after the work is done (Dispite it being law in most countrys that such wiring jobs be inspected and certifyed when doing work on the mains drops/meter)

Another guy who got his meter swaped (Without ANY notification) and a faulty install triped some 'safty switch' while he was away for a few days on vacation. Result? Slimey, smelly goo leaking out his unpowered fridge when he got home.

So not only is there theorical cause for consern, Theres multiple, MASSIVE *RECALLS* of faulty meters, Not just people reporting problems, but the power companys themselfs replacing thousands of meters after finding they where indeed faulty. (And not properly refunding people for incorrectly metered power, Technicaly you could only give a FULL refund while the meter was in operation, Since you have absolutely no idea how much was consumed and how much was faulty, As such charging anything more then 0 is fraud. Im pertty sure some weights and measurements trade act says as much...

wierdscience
08-04-2011, 07:11 PM
Ok, let's do the rest of the story. I worked for PG&E at the time.

1) the local power companies were the ones that pushed for the deregulation that allowed Enron and other competitors to dominate supplies.
2) The industry was deregulated with the normal hobbles on the former monopolies so that they could not abuse their power. They had to sell all generating capacity and could not control the market by forcing long term contracts on suppliers. This is the same type of thing done to the telephone companies after AT&T was broken up.
3) Enron and several others created artificial shortages by scheduling generator downtime at the same time.

That's my point,the IOUs as well as PG&E and SCE were not allowed to cut longterm contracts primarily because the job of deregulation wasn't finished.Davis didn't start the process,that was done by the previous gov and legislature.Davis simply didn't finish it and the result was a market that was buying power and gas on the day to day spot price.




It was really stupid to sell the generating capacity to private companies and then expect those private companies to willingly sell the power to PG&E at anything less than premium prices. I have no idea why the power companies pushed for that model.

Dan
Cali's public utilities had been selling power below cost for years before thanks to a price cap.With the artificially low market price there was no incentive for the public to conserve energy,and no capital to increase capacity.So they just bought excess capacity.That was fine so long as the excess capacity didn't experience a disruption such as the draught.

When you mix in environmental policy and choose to idle capacity it only makes things worse.

wierdscience
08-04-2011, 07:16 PM
Have you looked closely at any of the hedgerows lately? :D
Pffft...Pot now grows wild in the woods and ditches here nowThe only time the cops ever care is when it's in nice neat rows with irrigation and fertilizer:)

wierdscience
08-04-2011, 07:56 PM
Your recollection is very different than every other account I've read Darin.
Enron owned most of the power plants (and PG&E), and there are audio transcripts and internal memos from Enron executives telling them to shut the power plants down.

Ken Lay (who was convinced of 10 counts of securities fraud) was famously quoted as saying:


"In the final analysis, it doesn't matter what you crazy people in California do [to re-regulate the energy market], because I got smart guys who can always figure out how to make money."

Enron traded power moving across state lines,it's the only reason the feds had jurisdiction in the first place.

PG&E,SCE and the IOUs were not owned by Enron.They distributed power produced elsewhere that was bought by Enron and sold to them and they used NG that was produced elsewhere and sold to them by Enron.Enron was the classic description of a middleman.

Had the utilities been allowed to deal directly with the producers Enron would never have been involved.



Edit: I just looked it up, and according to PG&E, California only had 10 coal-fired generating units at eight locations in 2000, with a combined total 439 Megawatts of capacity. That was 0.7% of the state's total electric generating capacity.
I should have said fossil fuel plants instead of coal.A separate factor in that is the price of fuel credits which increased from $10 in June to $45in December of that year.
Another factor I didn't mention was Cali's legislature in 2000 passing a law to freeze retail electricity rates at 1996 prices which almost instantly bankrupted PG&E.
Like I said already I'm not defending Enron,but they were not totally at fault either.

About capitalism,you will never read a headline or see a news story on TV that says-"Millions back to work,economy soaring all thanks to capitalism"

It's only ever mentioned when TSHTF and a convenient scapegoat is needed,ever wonder why?;)

Evan
08-04-2011, 08:14 PM
Well, I discovered something even more interesting about our power company. They have known since 2006 that the federal government is planning to ban all imports of products containing more than a few milligrams of mercury per unit. The ban goes into effect next year sometime. BC Hydro is ordering all the meters they need in advance to squeak them in under the deadline. This is of course the company that is bragging how much better smart meters will be for the environment. They fail to mention that the meters in total contain about 1 metric tonne of elemental mercury.

Weston Bye
08-04-2011, 08:44 PM
...the meters in total contain about 1 metric tonne of elemental mercury.

I find this surprising. All the meters I've ever seen are of the induction type, using an aluminum disk near a coil. Indeed, I had to Google to gain a vague awareness of the mercury type, and they seemed to be antique technology.

Why would Hydro bother, given the environmental concerns. Are they more efficient or accurate than the induction type? Does the mercury mechanism fit better with the "smart" technology? The meters with mercury in place are not a hazard until one is involved in a wreck or fire - then the home is instantly a toxic waste site. Who then is responsible? The homeowner or Hydro?

I have doubts without more evidence.

Evan
08-04-2011, 09:15 PM
This is from the "Radio-Based_Endpoint_Disposal_Manual" at Itron. It is for the specific model being installed here.

Look it up on Google. It's the only hit.

It's the tilt sensor for the anti tamper system. Typically, such a switch contains a little under a gram of elemental mercury.

http://ixian.ca/pics9/mercury.jpg

J. Randall
08-05-2011, 12:02 AM
i don't know anything about growing pot

but why don't the guys just do it in the summer months ..

ans seed hedge rows with it ..

that way ....no maintenance ..hopefully for them no one else knows where it is ..

and they can harvest it ..anytime it's ready ..

and not be directly connected with it ..cause its not in their home

so what am i missing

all the best.markj

I don't know much about it either, but I have walked through miles of the stuff growing wild along the rivers and creeks while walking pipelines. I don't think it has much value unless it is tended.
James

Evan
08-05-2011, 12:41 AM
Wild weed is good only for fibre. The pot industry is full of highly talented biologists that have created entirely new strains of weed that are orders of magnitude stronger than the wild species. They use the same techniques as Monsanto with gene splicing to create strains that produce sterile seed and must be grown from cuttings. The leaves of the plant are nearly worthless as they don't contain much THC. It's the buds and the flowers that are valuable because the THC is highly concentrated in the pollen.

And no, I have nothing to do with the growing or using end but I have good friends in the RCMP.

Weston Bye
08-05-2011, 06:01 AM
Well, I discovered something even more interesting about our power company. They have known since 2006 that the federal government is planning to ban all imports of products containing more than a few milligrams of mercury per unit. The ban goes into effect next year sometime. BC Hydro is ordering all the meters they need in advance to squeak them in under the deadline. This is of course the company that is bragging how much better smart meters will be for the environment. They fail to mention that the meters in total contain about 1 metric tonne of elemental mercury.


I find this surprising. All the meters I've ever seen are of the induction type, using an aluminum disk near a coil. Indeed, I had to Google to gain a vague awareness of the mercury type, and they seemed to be antique technology...
...I have doubts without more evidence.


...the tilt sensor for the anti tamper system. Typically, such a switch contains a little under a gram of elemental mercury.

All is explained. It's not the actual meter, just a silly peripheral function within the meter. In a sane world, this gram of mercury, well contained will never be an issue, and disposal of these meters is more controlled than typical consumer electronics. Indeed, even a spill of this magnitude is not that big a deal, again - in a sane world...

aboard_epsilon
08-05-2011, 06:16 AM
Wild weed is good only for fibre. The pot industry is full of highly talented biologists that have created entirely new strains of weed that are orders of magnitude stronger than the wild species. They use the same techniques as Monsanto with gene splicing to create strains that produce sterile seed and must be grown from cuttings. The leaves of the plant are nearly worthless as they don't contain much THC. It's the buds and the flowers that are valuable because the THC is highly concentrated in the pollen.

And no, I have nothing to do with the growing or using end but I have good friends in the RCMP.

Aha ..that explains a lot ..the people who supply the seeds are the well disguised authorities ..

They know that the people who buy them can only sell them when mature ..so they track the plants right through to this stage , then pounce on the growers ..when they can get max payback..extrapolate the gain ..repossess the house, cars , savings ..huge fines .

manufactured crime .

I'm neither against pot or with it ..People can do what they want , it turns my guts to see people smoking it ..but i still think its up to them.

all the best.markj

Evan
08-05-2011, 12:47 PM
All is explained. It's not the actual meter, just a silly peripheral function within the meter. In a sane world, this gram of mercury, well contained will never be an issue, and disposal of these meters is more controlled than typical consumer electronics. Indeed, even a spill of this magnitude is not that big a deal, again - in a sane world...

Apparently the smart meters have a much greater tendency to burst into flames, as I explained previously. This isn't surprising since they contain many electronic parts compared to the hammer head simplicity of the old style meters. In a fire the mercury will be released in a very toxic form, as the oxide and distributed in the smoke. The fire needn't start with the meter either. Any amount of mercury spill larger than 500 mg is a reportable spill at the state/provincial level. In the US anything larger than a lb (about two tablespoons) is reportable at the federal level. Imagine a fire in a large apartment building with banks of meters.

What baffles me is why they didn't use a position sensing chip instead of a mercury tilt switch.

Black_Moons
08-05-2011, 12:51 PM
What baffles me is why they didn't use a position sensing chip instead of a mercury tilt switch.

For the exact opposite reason maxim-ic chips get used:

The designer is an old fart who has not kept up with modren technology over the past 10~20 years and may not really have a clue how to design things in the first place. Hence the bursting into flames, electrocuting people, and overreporting when the meters get hot. (Should'nt measurements/trade act people be spot checking meters and leving MASSIVE fines for inaccuracy, Like they do at gas stations?)

(Maxim chips get used because the designer is a young fart without a friggen clue how expensive and hard to supply maxim chips are)

Alternatively, someone got paid off to find a use for a few million mercury tilt switchs that NOBODY in the right mind wanted to buy due to the disposal costs alone costing wayyy more then any alternative solution.

Evan
08-05-2011, 12:55 PM
Aha ..that explains a lot ..the people who supply the seeds are the well disguised authorities .

Hardly. There are three main groups that take part in the activity, the biker gangs, the Asian gangs and the east Indian gangs. Of course, in some places they are the de facto authorities... There are also small mom and pop operations making ends meet but they dare not become too big or they will be entertaining visitors and I don't mean the constabulary.

Evan
08-05-2011, 03:14 PM
A very recent article underlines the type of vulnerability that these types of devices present. All we want to figure out is if you are at home or not, right?



Las Vegas (CNN) -- Don Bailey says he can unlock thousands of cars across the United States simply by sending a few texts from his Android phone.
And that's not even the scary part.
Bailey, a senior security consultant with iSEC Partners, said in an interview with CNN at the Black Hat security conference here at Caesars Palace that the same hack he has used to demonstrate unlocking and even starting a car via text message also could be used to attack industrial systems, the power grid and the water system.
"I could care less if I could unlock a car door," he said. "It's cool. It's sexy. But the same system is used to control phone, power, traffic systems. I think that's the real threat."
Bailey would not share details about which cars or which auto systems are vulnerable to the hack that he showed off publicly at the event.
The hack affects many kinds of devices that connect to cellular GSM networks, like the one used by AT&T. As cars and plenty of other stuff -- from pill bottles to trees, he said -- start connecting to cell grids and the Internet, Bailey said they become more vulnerable.
Certain electronic components that accept wireless signals are vulnerable to the hack, he said. Those components are in the cars Bailey said he can unlock remotely.

http://www.cnn.com/2011/TECH/mobile/08/03/black.hat.war.texting/index.html

topct
08-05-2011, 05:14 PM
Perhaps some concern of these smart meters is justifiable. I don't see a law abiding household having a problem with what a law enforcement agency would be looking for though.

The mercury tamper switch is just plain stupid as there are tidier methods for doing that. And since there is no way to bypass a meter and not have it show from the outside without removing the meter, that could easily be recorded. That and a proper one time use seal or two would defeat that possibility.

Yes currently meters are being bypassed. But if you look closely at a modern meter box and imagine how you would get at the service drop ahead of the meter without pulling it or even attacking it from the backside, you can see not only the difficulty but the very serious danger involved.

The indoor growers of pot should be very concerned even if they haven't bypassed the meter. A smart meter, if it is able to record and report real time use of power would of course record and report a fixed load that is switched on and off at fixed times. It would show that for a period of time that the load was on for, say eighteen hours, every day, and at the same time. It would also, of course, show a sudden, but again consistent on and off time change. And then a final, but again consistent change. If I could detect such a pattern I would know exactly what was happening.

Now around here that is not sufficient proof of illegal activity. And they would not be able to get a warrant at that point. They could be growing tomatoes. But it might be cause for investigation, and they don't need a warrant for that.

If they are going to use these meters here, and I can only presume it's just a matter of time. My concern is this for sure will increase those fees that can be justified by being fixed. The so called service fees. The fees that they can increase that are not based on actual use, but those that they can apply just for being connected. Or even an added "non use" fee. (You haven't used your minimum quota Clem!)

Finally, keep in mind that we are the consumers of their energy. And we do have a voice. Make yours heard or at least support those that are.

lazlo
08-05-2011, 09:02 PM
PG&E,SCE and the IOUs were not owned by Enron

PG&E was wholly-owned by Enron since 1997. That was the scam -- Enron was brokering power generated by their own power plants. As I said, you can listen to the audio recordings of Enron execs calling the PG&E power plants, and telling them to shut down, so they could scam the power market.

Enron totally screwed all the PG&E employees when they went bankrupt, because they converted the PG&E pensions to an Enron-sponsored investment fund, that washed out with the bankruptcy. Of course, all the execs left with hundreds of millions of dollars each.


About capitalism,you will never read a headline or see a news story on TV that says-"Millions back to work,economy soaring all thanks to capitalism"

That's because capitalism isn't creating jobs in the US. We don't make anything anymore, except semiconductors, weapons and collateralized debt obligations.

wierdscience
08-06-2011, 05:30 AM
PG&E was wholly-owned by Enron since 1997. That was the scam -- Enron was brokering power generated by their own power plants. As I said, you can listen to the audio recordings of Enron execs calling the PG&E power plants, and telling them to shut down, so they could scam the power market.

Enron totally screwed all the PG&E employees when they went bankrupt, because they converted the PG&E pensions to an Enron-sponsored investment fund, that washed out with the bankruptcy. Of course, all the execs left with hundreds of millions of dollars each.

You mean Portland Gas &Electric-I mean Pacific Gas & Electric,the latter went bankrupt after being forced to buy power at a greater cost than it's state mandated retail cap.But then why would the Cali legislature insist on a retail price cap in 2000 when they knew it would bankrupt two of Cali's largest producers???-Unless they were gaming the system for political reasons:rolleyes:
According to FERC-
"...supply-demand imbalance, flawed market design and inconsistent rules made possible significant market manipulation as delineated in final investigation report. Without underlying market dysfunction, attempts to manipulate the market would not be successful." "...many trading strategies employed by Enron and other companies violated the anti-gaming provisions..." "Electricity prices in California’s spot markets were affected by economic withholding and inflated price bidding, in violation of tariff anti-gaming provisions."
The major flaw of the deregulation scheme was that it was an incomplete deregulation—that is, "middleman" utility distributors continued to be regulated and forced to charge fixed prices, and continued to have limited choice in terms of electricity providers. Other, less catastrophic energy deregulation schemes, such as Pennsylvania's, have generally deregulated utilities but kept the providers regulated, or deregulated both.

As I said Enron was not the sole actor in this theatre,the Cali legislature is just as guilty.As to Ken Lay,he got shafted,it was Jeffery Shilling who was the real crook.He was the one who engineered Enron in to Mark to Market because as he said Enron "didn't need any assets"just the same as the dot.coms did.Justice was served however and he got 24 years.

As for the execs leaving with hundreds of millions each-more like tens of millions ,when Enron bought PGE they did so with $2billion in Enron stock and $1.1billion in assumed debt.The employee's 401k plans were already worthless when Enron made the deal,they just didn't know it yet.Both of Enrons PGE branch execs went to jail from they're involvement in Enron Broadband,so no they didn't get off.


That's because capitalism isn't creating jobs in the US. We don't make anything anymore, except semiconductors, weapons and collateralized debt obligations.

Capitalism is creating jobs just like it always has,only government is destroying them faster.The media leans left and by default believes that government is always right no matter what.As a result a slim majority of the public believes this as well and we have a Trillion dollars worth of "Jobs saved or created"to prove it,only nothing to show for it.

The Artful Bodger
08-06-2011, 06:01 AM
....The media leans left and by default believes that government is always right no matter what...


Reality has a leftist bias.

Weston Bye
08-06-2011, 06:15 AM
...That's because capitalism isn't creating jobs in the US. We don't make anything anymore, except semiconductors, weapons and collateralized debt obligations.

Come on, lazlo, I know you know better than that. Hyperbole.

Where I work we build auto and industrial machinery parts. Mostly fuel injector coils right now, but a lot of them, and tooling up for more. For every four or six or eight of these we build, someone else is building an engine - here in the United States. These go into locomotives, power plants, earthmovers, trucks, and automobiles.

We are tooling up one product right now to produce an injector coil every 10 seconds or so, three shifts. A complex product, wound, assembled and overmolded.

In the grand scheme of things, all this is small potatoes. But it represents a small tip of the apparently unseen iceberg that is American manufacturing.

And here I thought that all semiconductors came from Asia now. I guess it depends on a person's observation point.

Iraiam
08-06-2011, 07:55 AM
The USA still has the largest manufacturing base in the world, by far, it is just shrinking (jobs are leaving) because our government created an atmosphere that is unfriendly to it.

Rich Carlstedt
08-06-2011, 10:20 AM
We have those here who are convinced that the technology is an ulterior motive to evade privacy regulations and Constitutional Rights to self incrimination by the government, and those that do not.
Our arguments can both be true.
The simplest intents by our government, usually wind up completely missing the point, and costing you a price. the AMT (Alternative Minimum Tax) was written because 60 people did not pay taxes, and now it affects 60 Million.


What will you say when they outlaw money, and want all transactions by card ? ( This has been discussed, no printing costs, no copper usage!)
Every one has card readers, and an ID . money goes into and out of your personal bank account.
Is that an invasion ?
Some will say no, and some will say yes

The word 'Freedom" means "Unencombered"
Slavery has many definitions..your call

Rich

Rustybolt
08-06-2011, 11:05 AM
I don't think the gentleman in the video is a tinfoil hat. This is a lot like the iPhone tracking debacle, or Flash Super Cookies -- yes, they're collecting the data, yes people have been indicted based on the data (in the case of the iPhone and the power metering), but no they're not invading your privacy :rolleyes:

Not surprisingly, with all the negative press Apple got, they rushed out a patch to allow the users to clear the localization database.

And that's what the guy in the video is saying -- these big companies will exploit their infrastructure and violate your privacy unless enough consumers complain.


Well. If you look closely at the background, he is talking from chicago. That's Cook County Jail over his right shoulder.
Like our vaunted tollway system which uses electronic tolls, we were told the system was just to make collecting tolls easier. But, Oh my, it turns out that timing your tolls can lead to a speeding ticket.

Rustybolt
08-06-2011, 11:08 AM
There's a little rule of thumb I use when judging the action of others.
It's who benefits?
When it is the government mandating the action you can bet it's almost never for your own good.

Evan
08-06-2011, 11:21 AM
What will you say when they outlaw money, and want all transactions by card ? ( This has been discussed, no printing costs, no copper usage!)

Not likely, for one main reason. Printing money is a huge money maker for the government. It's called "seigniorage". Any time the money supply is expanded the government makes almost 100% of the face value on the money it prints. It costs maybe 35 cents to print a bill and the bill is sold to the banks at face value. Naturally, $100 bills make the most profit.

philbur
08-06-2011, 01:14 PM
Perfect solution to the current sovereign debt problems. I can't think why nobody has thought of it before.:confused:

Phil:)


Any time the money supply is expanded the government makes almost 100% of the face value on the money it prints. It costs maybe 35 cents to print a bill and the bill is sold to the banks at face value. Naturally, $100 bills make the most profit.

Evan
08-06-2011, 01:39 PM
Uh huh. The US is in a unique position though. Over half of the US currency in circulation circulates outside of the US and isn't involved in the US economy. The USD is the de facto world currency and the exchange rates vary dramatically around the world at the street level. The US government must decide how much to increase the money supply based not only on population growth and the state of the economy but also via estimating how much of that money will leave the country permanently. They can get away with printing much more than other governments because so much of the cash leaves the country and doesn't contribute to US inflation.

No other country can get away with that. The US will never give up that advantage if they can avoid it. Right now China is swinging their weight around and suggesting the world needs a unique world currency instead of the US dollar. If that happens and eventually takes hold the US will be in even deeper trouble and China knows that. It is the sword they are hanging over the USA's head to make sure that the US doesn't default on the 1.2 trillion they are owed.

Clark
08-06-2011, 03:40 PM
Figuring out things form electronic activity has taken some strange twists.

Some of us that have designed things to meet TEMPEST requirements for secrecy:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/TEMPEST

Evan
08-06-2011, 04:35 PM
When I worked for Xerox I serviced dedicated word processors used by the RCMP. These were a combination of a daisy wheel printer with a full monochrome screen and associated software. They were tempest shielded and the requirements for working on them included strict adherence to the procedures to insure the shielding wasn't compromised. The CRTs used were coated with transparent tin oxide which is one of the very few materials that is fully conductive and transparent to act as electrostatic shielding.

It also turned out that the sound of a daisy wheel printer was unique for each letter because of the time it took to get the letter in position. All you needed to do was sync up and the rest could be decoded if you had a decent bug in the room.

Back in the day of 300 and 1200 baud modems it was discovered that on many models the activity LED on the front could be observed from a distance using a telescope and the data decoded as it flickered. That problem was easily addressed by putting a capacitor across the LED.

Evan
08-09-2011, 04:38 PM
See here for how to make a difference and influence people.

http://www.bclocalnews.com/bc_cariboo/williamslaketribune/opinion/127280473.html

Note: While it wasn't edited they didn't do a very good job on the paragraphs. Oh well. I am not a regular contributor but I have been published quite a few times over the years.

topct
08-10-2011, 06:38 PM
As far as I know they are not installing smart meters here. I would hope that those that make the decision to do so have studied the failures and /or problems that have shown themselves elsewhere.

There is no justifiable reason for a usage meter to report anything other than total use. It would be so very easy to design an accurate meter, to be read directly, and with a tamper detector and devices.

Such a device would not, and it should not, and it need not, be intrusive.

In any way. Imagined or otherwise.

Evan
08-10-2011, 06:54 PM
They have probably already started according to the time table. You can look up the plans for every state here:

http://www.edisonfoundation.net/iee/issuebriefs/SmartMeter_Rollouts_0910.pdf

Black_Moons
08-10-2011, 08:14 PM
As far as I know they are not installing smart meters here. I would hope that those that make the decision to do so have studied the failures and /or problems that have shown themselves elsewhere.

There is no justifiable reason for a usage meter to report anything other than total use. It would be so very easy to design an accurate meter, to be read directly, and with a tamper detector and devices.

Such a device would not, and it should not, and it need not, be intrusive.

In any way. Imagined or otherwise.

I can see a use for time period billing, But then, The meter only needs to have 2 (or 3 or 4 or whatever) 'Total use' counts, One for each period to be billed at a diffrent rate. It does NOT need to read and record the power usage every 5 minutes while simutaniously being able to turn off your AC, fridge and hot water heater, just because 'you don't really need them' right now and they want to rebalance random loads. (Hope nobody hacks your fridge and turns the fridges nation wide off for a few days. Famine anyone?)

darryl
08-10-2011, 09:21 PM
" It would be so very easy to design an accurate meter, to be read directly, and with a tamper detector and devices."

Yeah, that's the meter that's been on your house for decades already. We don't need the new meters- at all. The potential for abusing the system has already been proven, and so has the money coming out of our pockets for it. It's a bad deal for a hundred million people, and it should not be happening. Are we going to become a continent full of people with their heads buried in the sand?

Black_Moons
08-10-2011, 09:30 PM
I wonder what happens to a smart meter if your hobby is running large tesla coils.

Evan
08-10-2011, 09:42 PM
Or coin crushers in the room on the other side of the wall. I always wanted to build one of those...

Arcane
08-10-2011, 09:45 PM
Smart meters with the capability of turning the power off and on remotely in conjunction with obtaining reads would be a real time/money saving device for electrical utilities if they were installed on rental properties. Home owners tend to stay put in one place for quite a long time but renters in general are constantly moving.

Evan
08-10-2011, 09:53 PM
They already have that capability including the ones they are installing here. Not only can they cut your power remotely but when they turn it back on you have to pay a reconnection fee. They are also planning pay-as-you-use plans where you pay in advance and the power shuts off if you don't keep your balance topped up.

The shlt is really going to hit the fan when they turn off the power to some senior's apartment in the winter and they freeze to death. At least a human on site knows better than to do that.

JoeFin
08-10-2011, 10:00 PM
WOW - did this thread go out on a tangent

Smart meters track electricity and gas use and wirelessly transmit data to utilities, negating the need for meter readers.

We also have them for our water meters here too. They just drive down your street emitting a signal from the truck and the meters report back with the consumption. No more Dog Bites, No more Meter Reader Mistakes, No more magnets on the back of the meter. They can also instantly track water, gas leaks and electrical line loss

How anyone equates that with Big Brother reaching into your back yard or bedroom is a mystery to me

Mcgyver
08-10-2011, 11:08 PM
They just drive down your street emitting a signal from the truck and the meters report back with the consumption.


This may not apply everywhere,,,,however it has been stated many times here, the main reason is not labour saving from meter reading, its to facilitate time of use billing. They do not drive down the street, they collect the data and phone it in. Its how electric utilities, being denied rate hikes, will increase revenue....which they claim they have to do support an aging infrastructure. My info on that comes from a very credible source, can't get more credible....very senior bureaucrat. Pay for it one way or another or freeze in the dark; those are are the choices.

what is ridiculous about the thread though is that people protest it as an invasion of privacy. As a supplier the utility is perfectly within their rights to collect it..... That the info is being shared with third parties is what should enrage......but angst shouldn't matter whether its a smart meter or not. Put another way, who gives a crap that they collect the data, but as it was data exchanged as part of a private commercial transaction, how dare they share it. It's like VISA or Amazon or something sending the IRS or the police your monthly bill.....shouldn't happen without a warrant imo.

Your Old Dog
08-10-2011, 11:12 PM
A crime is committed at 3:30 pm. How can you find out who the suspects might be? How those families who are home at that hour? It's not such a stupid notion. Don't be so naive. As it is many of us can be tracked all through our daily comings and goings. You are photographed at most every purchase you make and cameras watch you all day long. One day we'll wake up with absolutly no expectation of privacy including the thermal imaging from outside your bedroom walls.

By the way, 1 watt of energy is a lot of power at very high frequencys so don't look at it as some little thing.

Evan
08-10-2011, 11:27 PM
How anyone equates that with Big Brother reaching into your back yard or bedroom is a mystery to me

Read the entire thread Joe. There isn't anything mysterious about it.

Evan
08-10-2011, 11:39 PM
This may not apply everywhere,,,,however it has been stated many times here, the main reason is not labour saving from meter reading, its to facilitate time of use billing. They do not drive down the street, they collect the data and phone it in.

They don't phone it in. It is collected in real time with a granularity of about 5 minutes although that can be adjusted to whatever they like. Power usage can be analysed at any level down to the individual residence and individual loads within the residence when a power gateway is added. That will be the next step after the smart meter is installed.

This is from the Glossary on the Itron website. It isn't just about time of use billing, not at all.



Advanced Metering Infrastructure (AMI)

A comprehensive utility metering and communications system built on bi-directional communications and open standards, offering functionality beyond AMR such as demand response and integrated turn on/off.

AMI consists of four main components:

A smart meter able to collect and store electricity interval data for its own service type plus interface with and collect and store data from other devices such as other meters and home gateways. It can also initiate and respond to two-way communications with the utility.


A home gateway device able to collect data from, communicate with and control various energy-using appliances throughout the home such as air conditioners and hot water heaters. A home gateway also has two-way communications with the utility.

A data collection network that provides bi-directional communication of data and commands between the home and the utility. The collection network can be publicly or privately owned and can operate using open and proprietary standards.

An enterprise meter data management (MDM) system that provides a single, scalable repository for metering- based data along with standard interfaces to other utility systems such as CIS, OMS, GIS and workforce management.

AMI systems also support advanced capabilities such as load control, Time-of-Use and Critical Peak Pricing, and outage and restoration reporting.

Your Old Dog
08-11-2011, 12:11 AM
Here's one more building block to my post above.

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/technology/news/8671256/US-spies-plan-photo-location-finder.html

darryl
08-11-2011, 12:33 AM
Here's where I'm coming from on this- I'm not against the use of technology, or specifically this technology, to help make reading your energy use more efficient, and help make you more aware of your energy use patterns. If you can adjust your time-of-use to more effectively use the power you consume, so much the better. We could help to stave off the need to build more power plants, etc if we could learn to use energy more wisely. If the power company can use this technology to help find and shut down grow-ops, great. Being able to find out where power is being stolen and shut that down, great. Should help keep our power bills lower, yes that would be nice.

But from all the reports so far, in places with smart meters, peoples bills have gone up. Problems with the smart meters have caused some people a great financial burden, apparently with no recourse to a correction of the situation. And if it's true that they have gone on fire or burnt up, it would seem that you would be SOL to collect insurance on your home if it went up in flames. Not to mention, you might die.

Loss of privacy, and protection of your data- show me where any electronic system has eluded a hacker. Even high security systems get hacked. Are you really willing to trust your lives to some for-profit company that doesn't give a shi- about you?

I'm a law abiding citizen with nothing to hide. But why should I put myself at even more risk of being 'hacked' than I am already in this electronic age? No, I don't want something on my house that can 'inform' on me- I already have the internet and get birthday wishes from people I don't know, and advertising to show me the new battery I need, just because I looked up batteries. If I happened to look up ladies dresses, for instance, I'd probably get pop-ups showing me the endless varieties of bras I could buy. (no, I'm not into ladies dresses, just using that as an example). There is an invisible invasion going on, and one which gets blamed a lot on the computer. The buck is passed. I do NOT voluntarily agree to open up more avenues for my private information to be sent out to anyone who could read it if they punch the right buttons.

It is probably already illegal for me to refuse the hydro guys to install the 'smart' meter. Am I not already being invaded by this- of course I am. I want no part of it, and I feel I'd be within my rights to kick them off my property.

The worthy points about the smart meter are far outweighed already by the negatives. I'll keep paying for the power I use, and it seems I'll have to keep paying for the power that California uses and hasn't paid for- and I'm likely to be having to pay for a new dam so I can continue to use electricity, which although we have enough generating capacity for our own provinces' use, we're giving away so much that apparently we're running ourselves short. I've already been ripped off because the power company that I owned a part of was sold out from under me. I cannot trust my government, and I cannot trust the utilities, the financial institutions, etc. How much bigger of a piece of my life should I be willing to throw away on government and business corruption and criminality?

The big picture here has me (and all of you) bleeding even more profusely than ever before.

Evan
08-11-2011, 12:43 AM
The smart meter system has already been hacked. It was demonstrated earlier this week at the Defcon meeting in Las Vegas. The methods were not revealed as it was a "white hat" security consultant that discovered how to do it. The problem that follows this sort of problem is that the power companies will do a cost vs benefit analysis to decide if the potential exposure of personal information is important enough to be worth fixing. They may likely decide that it isn't, especially if the the hacking cannot be easily tied to a crime that results.

Scenario: Drive by hacker intercepts smart meter signal from your house on a sunny summer weekend. It is apparent that the air conditioner is not running even though on a day like this day it should be. Ergo, you aren't home. B+E follows, shop tools all missing when you get home from your vacation.

Black_Moons
08-11-2011, 02:23 AM
Or how about the power company data mines everyones power consumption records, minute by minute, And extrapolates exactly what each load is by its consumption profile and power factor/current waveforms. (Large industral motors, Welders, Universal motor appliances/power tools, resistive heaters), Along with the number of unique 'load signatures' detected in each catagory.

Add to that, overall consumption records with track records, And you have a 'Who to hit' database for B&E's detailing assets of each house, When they are home and when they are away at work, Whose on vacation, Who only leaves for short periods at a time and to avoid.

And pertty much count on either the power company being hacked and the database leaked to everyone and/or the power company just selling the database to whatever advertisers/crooks think they can turn a profit on it.

We live in a digitial age of information is money.

aboard_epsilon
08-11-2011, 06:36 AM
Here's one more building block to my post above.

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/technology/news/8671256/US-spies-plan-photo-location-finder.html

seems google has a reverse image facility ..you press on the picture in images..then press similar

trouble is it's not working like it should ..and some 70 percent of the results come from branch of ebay called yakaz..and cant be opened, they seem to be pictures called kml files

yakaz results have swamped the Google image results.

all the best.mark

topct
08-11-2011, 07:41 AM
Found this at the local power companies site.

http://www.avistautilities.com/inside/resources/smartgrid/PublishingImages/smartgrid.pdf

I now believe that one of the items recently installed on the pole near my house is definately part of the system. Looking at the above image I have to wonder if they can install one of those meters on my house. I don't even have a 100 amp service, mine is a 60. There are no breakers used, just old fashioned fuses. It also looks like there is another device mounted inside the house for personel monitoring of your power.

If they where able to decide that in my situation the house I have lived in for almost 40 years is not upgradable, I would be very sad, and very mad.

This is their plan,

http://www.avistautilities.com/inside/resources/smartgrid/Pages/default.aspx

JoeFin
08-11-2011, 08:05 AM
This may not apply everywhere,,,,however it has been stated many times here, the main reason is not labour saving from meter reading, its to facilitate time of use billing. They do not drive down the street, they collect the data and phone it in. Its how electric utilities, being denied rate hikes, will increase revenue....which they claim they have to do support an aging infrastructure. My info on that comes from a very credible source, can't get more credible....very senior bureaucrat. Pay for it one way or another or freeze in the dark; those are are the choices.

I can't speak for your Utility Providers, but here with SMUD residential customers are not charged by "Time of Use" rates, just a flat rate. Same with PG&E. Commercial accounts can be charged Time of Use rates should they opt for that package, but then of course they're base line rate is lower too.

The idea (I Believe) behind "Smart Grid" technology was to allow residential customers to take advantage of "Time of Use" metering and "Smart House" technology if they so choose to do so. Dishwasher, clothes dryer, washing machine, would be programmed to turn on when reduced rates became available.

tdmidget
08-11-2011, 08:30 AM
I can't speak for your Utility Providers, but here with SMUD residential customers are not charged by "Time of Use" rates, just a flat rate. Same with PG&E. Commercial accounts can be charged Time of Use rates should they opt for that package, but then of course they're base line rate is lower too.

The idea (I Believe) behind "Smart Grid" technology was to allow residential customers to take advantage of "Time of Use" metering and "Smart House" technology if they so choose to do so. Dishwasher, clothes dryer, washing machine, would be programmed to turn on when reduced rates became available.
So, Joe, do you have an iron in this fire, or just too lazy to read the whole thread? It's not speculation, it is happening now.

tdmidget
08-11-2011, 08:36 AM
If I happened to look up ladies dresses, for instance, I'd probably get pop-ups showing me the endless varieties of bras I could buy. (no, I'm not into ladies dresses, just using that as an example).

Not that there's anything wrong with that......:D

Mcgyver
08-11-2011, 08:47 AM
I can't speak for your Utility Providers, but here with SMUD residential customers are not charged by "Time of Use" rates, just a flat rate.

They need the smart meters out there before they can do time of use billing, but its the main reason for rolling them out. Smart meters are a bit stand alone from the smart grid or smart home. The smart grid allows rapid and automatic controls of the grid - would have prevented the huge blackout a few years ago covering ontario and most of the US north east. Smart home, integrating power using devices with an info network is installed and controlled by the home owner, lets you minimize costs (when there's time of day billing), see what you're using, control things remotely etc.

Evan, in remote areas I can't comment on what is done. Here, one of the largest distributors in North America, does call home using a cell phone. Data is collected 10 times per hour and relayed to a cell (1 per 300 I was told) and ONCE per day, not real time, transferred. This comes from direct discussions with the top people at one of NA's largest distributors who are leaders in rolling this stuff out.

JoeFin
08-11-2011, 08:50 AM
Even Nailed it

Yes they can and will be hacked. Except some kid with a laptop and USB wireless transmitter will be asking you how much you want to shave off your bill.

Evan: if the would be burglars wanted to use Smart Meter information then they would most likely need a fairly good parabolic directional antenna because once they ping the meter, every meter in the neighborhood is going to respond and only be distinguishable by a unique account number. Of course you guys out in the country side would be suseptable, but then why carry around a "Soon to be made illegal burglary tool carrying a 1 to 3 year penalty for having in your possession" compared to just driving around looking for lights out and no smoke from your chimney.

As for "Data Mining" the "Time of Use, Consumption" information it takes HUGE amounts of processing power to do that. As in Cray Super Computer types of processing power, and as cash strapped as the US is, I don't see local police dept. being able to sneak 1 of those under the budget review process.

As others have mentioned "Unique Signatures" of various machine tools. "Event Capture" was all the rage in the Semiconductor Industry back in the 90s and is incorporated in most facilities today. How ever these Big Bulky dedicated PCs and Highly Specialized full sized circuit cards with dedicated banks of RAM that roll over every 30 minutes. PG&E nor SMUD has even incorporated them in their own switch yards. The R&D required to make them reliable and fit into a residential utility meter that are subjected to extreme heat would be staggering. And to think the CEO of a Utility would consider such an undertaking and the increased per unit cost of the 100s of 1000s of utility meters he must provide so he could burglarize your home shop is highly unlikely too.

JoeFin
08-11-2011, 09:02 AM
So, Joe, do you have an iron in this fire, or just too lazy to read the whole thread? It's not speculation, it is happening now.

Depends what you consider an "Iron in the Fire"

I have worked with this technology since it's inception during the early 90s. Back then in parts of New Jersey you could have a couple cents per kw shaved off your residential base rate if you allowed the local utility to install their switch box on your panel. When the Utility would reach near peak output they simply sent out a signal through "Power Line Carrier Wave" to all the "Switch Boxes" they installed and shut off your Hot Water Heater, and Clothes Dryer.

In other post I described systems we installed in Thin Film Coating and Semiconductor facilities.

You guys should be more concerned about Utilities buying "Cheap Inaccurate" metering equipment a lot more then Sophisticated CIA Monitoring systems that can peek onto your garage or bedroom - Honestly

JoeFin
08-11-2011, 09:06 AM
They need the smart meters out there before they can do time of use billing.

Mcgyver - they have been doing "Time of Use" metering for over 25 years that I know of without "Power Line Carrier Wave" reporting. Look on almost any commercial digital utility meter with the flashing display and you will see the time and date stamp flashing too

Mcgyver
08-11-2011, 09:45 AM
they have been doing "Time of Use" metering for over 25 years that I know of

without a 'smart' meter, ie with the old style with wheels and counters, how would they know at what time of day power was being used?

its my understanding that what makes it a 'smart meter' is that it takes, stores and transfers data samples of power use in a time domain. There is at least one smart meter i know of where the cell/transmit component is an option and without that option its read through inductive coupling with a reader....no radio transmission device on board, but its still called a smart meter

JoeFin
08-11-2011, 10:09 AM
without a 'smart' meter, ie with the old style with wheels and counters, how would they know at what time of day power was being used?


Those Digital Meters have been used for "Commercial Accounts" for years and are programmed by the "Meter Shop" servicing the customer with their baseline rate and time of use contract information. I believe when the meter reader arrives it displays "Base" and "Peak" consumption. They also have a other features depending on the billing agreement such as "Peak Demand" and "Kvar" which can be read and applied to the billing depending on the billing agreement. Most Utilities have several commercial rate billing structures the customer can choose from.

My last PG&E residential billing agreement only offered 2 Residential Billing options - "All Electric" @ $0.11 or "Multi" @ $0.13 per Kw

I would like to add to this discussion

Utility Transmission equipment is not that sophisticated. They work in "Reliability" and have resisted changes for as long as I been working with them. This may come as a shock - but Utilities also use Meters in their Substations, which presently they have to send some one out to read if they want to know what is going on. From the Utility Provider's point of view he doesn't have a clue of what is going on down line other then he has a power sag and needs more. He might call up peakers in Nevada to make up for losses in San Francisco crossing Kvar rich Municipalities in Sacramento while leaving plants next to the Bay Area idle.

Additionally the Utilities don't have a clue what equipment they even have out in the field, power conditioning wise. Every so often they have to send out a contractor or soon to be retired line foreman to conduct an audit of their line equipment. Remember these guys are covering 100s if not 1000s of sq miles. These guys finding equipment on the poles the office had no idea existed is common.

They are still using "Time Clocks" to switch capacitor banks on line sets that have not been monitored for decades. The factories that increased the inductive load requiring Kvar correction / Capacitor Bank Pf correction have since moved on to China and are no longer there.

Power Generation Contracts include 4 levels of response. Your Utility is paying Peaker Plants to stand by idle and be ready should they call and need an additional 50 to 700 Megawatts because they have no accurate trending data. Yes they are looking at Data Acquisition but not in the same sense paranoia would suggest. They are looking at it by the Substation or Line Set

macona
08-11-2011, 11:01 AM
Or how about the power company data mines everyones power consumption records, minute by minute, And extrapolates exactly what each load is by its consumption profile and power factor/current waveforms. (Large industral motors, Welders, Universal motor appliances/power tools, resistive heaters), Along with the number of unique 'load signatures' detected in each catagory.

Add to that, overall consumption records with track records, And you have a 'Who to hit' database for B&E's detailing assets of each house, When they are home and when they are away at work, Whose on vacation, Who only leaves for short periods at a time and to avoid.

And pertty much count on either the power company being hacked and the database leaked to everyone and/or the power company just selling the database to whatever advertisers/crooks think they can turn a profit on it.

We live in a digitial age of information is money.

The meters are not that advanced.

lakeside53
08-11-2011, 11:32 AM
12 years ago PG&E changed out my gas and electric meters to the "rf" type - so they can be read from the street. But.. we have underground wiring so no pole mounted receivers. About 5 years ago they started driving the streets with a mobile data acquisition truck to pick up the meters in areas like ours, but... I'm a 900 feet from the road.

So 12 years later, I still get a meter reader about once every two months, with a estimate for the intervening month. He still eyeballs the meter - not using any handheld reader; maybe my batteries are flat by now? ;)

Evan
08-11-2011, 11:54 AM
Evan, in remote areas I can't comment on what is done.

Vancouver isn't exactly a remote area. The RF self configuring network with router meters and real time monitoring is being installed as we "speak" throughout BC. It is the only method used and there is no opt out.

Black_Moons
08-11-2011, 12:01 PM
You think it takes a supercomputer to tell your toaster from your lathe just based on power consumption?

http://www.theregister.co.uk/2011/07/27/chip_crypto_cracked/
"The attack could be carried out with off-the-shelf hardware at moderate effort."

Try 6~9 hours to crack a chip with MILLIONS of indivual power loads and figure out exactly what each one is doing, enough to crack crypto going on inside the chip, And thats on a chip that operates in excess of 500mhz.

Now lets drop that down to 60hz...

Im guessing it will take a modren PC all of 10 seconds to cross corrilate a few weeks power consumption records (With 1 minute sampleing intervals) into a report about what number of diffrent appliances in each catagory you most likey have. Remember, it doesnt need to be 100% accurate.. or accurate at all really. All it needs to do is point out whose using a lot of power on little variable load universal/inductive motors, and whose just pissing it into a swiming pool heater.

JoeFin
08-11-2011, 12:21 PM
Vancouver isn't exactly a remote area. The RF self configuring network with router meters and real time monitoring is being installed as we "speak" throughout BC. It is the only method used and there is no opt out.

Yes Evan

I've been seeing "Self Configuring RF Network Technology" creeping into every aspect of control systems for the last couple of years. But not so much in "High Resolution" critical control apps. Mostly fairly "Steady State" applications like Tank Levels and Temps in storage applications. They also have fairly sophisticated security measures

I might be a bit outdated concerning the requirements of "Real Time Monitoring" of "Events" or what others suggest are "Electrical Signatures" but from what they had available 15 years ago it is not going to "fit" into the footprint of a utility meter.

The top of the line Industrial use utility meters that stick out from the socket a good 12" were considered "True RMS" but lacked the ability to measure .pf or be accurate in low power factor applications.

But will they track your consumption (Kw) habits in 15 minute increments - absolutely. Will that include Kvar - No. Will that be applied and extrapolated to entire line sets, medium voltage (35 - 65Kv) distribution systems, High voltage grids, - absolutely, that is the whole idea

macona
08-11-2011, 12:30 PM
You think it takes a supercomputer to tell your toaster from your lathe just based on power consumption?

http://www.theregister.co.uk/2011/07/27/chip_crypto_cracked/
"The attack could be carried out with off-the-shelf hardware at moderate effort."

Try 6~9 hours to crack a chip with MILLIONS of indivual power loads and figure out exactly what each one is doing, enough to crack crypto going on inside the chip, And thats on a chip that operates in excess of 500mhz.

Now lets drop that down to 60hz...

Im guessing it will take a modren PC all of 10 seconds to cross corrilate a few weeks power consumption records (With 1 minute sampleing intervals) into a report about what number of diffrent appliances in each catagory you most likey have. Remember, it doesnt need to be 100% accurate.. or accurate at all really. All it needs to do is point out whose using a lot of power on little variable load universal/inductive motors, and whose just pissing it into a swiming pool heater.

Totally different than a power meter reading what is going on. The only thing they have in common is there is electricity involved.

And they used graphic chips to do the heavy lifting, which in themselves are supercomputers.

Black_Moons
08-11-2011, 12:31 PM
... It requires 12" just to store a microcontroller, ADC, flash drive and current shunt?

I could put those on a PCB 1" square. Course, the current shunt would be about 3x that, but existing meters need current shunts anyway.. Well. Technicaly no they don't, they could use something like this:

http://rocky.digikey.com/weblib/Allegro/Web%20photos/620-CB-5.jpg
State of the art hall current sensor, less then 1" square, good for over 100A

Or maybe this type:
http://img.weiku.com/waterpicture/2011/5/17/22/C2_Serial_Hall_Current_Sensor_634412664646973251_s .jpg

Little bulkyer at a few square inchs, But can be designed to handle 500A+ easily with 1A~ resolution, Just pass the wire to be measured through the hole in the center.

And thats without even considering current transformers.

Really, Size is of no consern to modren electronics. I could make you a cell phone sized device that could record the exact waveforms of current you are using that you would need to do nothing more then place it over top the wires. (Poor accuracy unless you wanna disconnect the wires and feed it through holes in the device, but really we need resolution not accuracy to determin exactly what type of appliances you have and how many)

Black_Moons
08-11-2011, 12:34 PM
Totally different than a power meter reading what is going on. The only thing they have in common is there is electricity involved.

And they used graphic chips to do the heavy lifting, which in themselves are supercomputers.

Yes, its a good thing the govnment outlawed people and power companys buying video cards then. Oh wait, they did'nt? Well, Damn.

Also how is this any diffrent? Its identifying exactly what load is running and doing what, at 500mhz+ speeds, Just based on power consumption.

A bit like tempest decoding exactly what is displayed on your PC monitor just by the RF emited.
Yea, it sounds far fetched, like it would never work... But then, someone went and did it, And it worked. Did'nt work great with 100% accuracy sure, But it worked enough to be a serious threat to anyone trying to securely display information.

JoeFin
08-11-2011, 12:55 PM
... It requires 12" just to store a microcontroller, ADC, flash drive and current shunt?

I could put those on a PCB 1" square. Course, the current shunt would be about 3x that, but existing meters need current shunts anyway.. Well. Technicaly no they don't, they could use something like this:


Yes without looking over the spec sheets I can say that would measure Kw, but your still a long way off from a "Multifunction Wave Form" which I consider to be an "Electronic Signature"

The supplier we used in the early 90s isn't making the exact series we used then but he has some thing very similar. and yes you need 1 for each line

http://www.keithley.com/products/semiconductor/parametricanalyzer/4200scs/?mn=4225-PMU

I don't argue if a corporation wanted to shrink this down to fit into a utility meter they most likely could. Just the R&D cost would be astronomical and the production facility so specialized they might as well buy it outright

lazlo
08-11-2011, 01:11 PM
... It requires 12" just to store a microcontroller, ADC, flash drive and current shunt?

I could put those on a PCB 1" square. Course, the current shunt would be about 3x that, but existing meters need current shunts anyway..

For the volumes they're talking about, the Smart Meter would be a custom mixed-signal ASIC. You could fit the microcontroller with ADC and flash, the BlueTooth/Zigbee radio and the current sensor in less than a fingernail.

Black_Moons
08-11-2011, 01:11 PM
Yes without looking over the spec sheets I can say that would measure Kw, but your still a long way off from a "Multifunction Wave Form" which I consider to be an "Electronic Signature"

The supplier we used in the early 90s isn't making the exact series we used then but he has some thing very similar. and yes you need 1 for each line

http://www.keithley.com/products/semiconductor/parametricanalyzer/4200scs/?mn=4225-PMU

I don't argue if a corporation wanted to shrink this down to fit into a utility meter they most likely could. Just the R&D cost would be astronomical and the production facility so specialized they might as well buy it outright

"at acquisition rates of up to 200 megasamples/second" , thats enough to ID every thing in your house from just the EMI it emits... without the damn thing even being connected to the power grid.

Im talking sampleing rate of just a few khz to 1mhz, to capture indivual cycles. Don't even need to capture every cycle, Just a few cycles every minute or so is more then enough.

http://gizmodo.com/5252774/diy-pocket+sized-oscilloscope-kit-for-33
Something like that, + current shunt, + a few more bits resolution. Not bad for $33. Prebuilt for $49.

http://www.robotshop.com/productinfo.aspx?pc=RB-See-66 12bits, 1MSPS, Color display, waveforms saved to SD disk (I got a 8gig one the other day for $20..), $90 cost.. in quanity 1.

Thats enough to take 16,000 samples of a single 60hz cycle, with 0.02A resolution, Assuming 100A max. Thats enough resolution to detect exactly what SIZE light bulb you just turned on/off. (resolution of 2.4W)

More then enough to figure out exact power factor and seperate loads such as SMPS loads that general draw from the peak of the waveform only, active power factor corrected loads that will generate high amounts of HF noise, Resistive loads that are 1 power factor, CCFL loads that are JUST drawn at the very peak of the AC waveform due to no power factor correction, inductive loads with poor power factor, universal motors with sparking brushs and odd consumption waveforms depending on the current RPM, etc.

Also realise that typicaly if you measure every minute (or every few seconds) only one load will turn on/off during any perticular minute, So you have a baseline reading and a new reading, subtract the two and you have the current draw of whatever was just turned on/off.

Now, what was that about it costing huge amounts of money? Considering these sold what, maybe a few thousand? Compaired to the fact that every damn house in canada AND the usa 'needs' smart power meters? Meaning MILLIONS apon millions of guarenteed sales?

Black_Moons
08-11-2011, 01:22 PM
For the volumes they're talking about, the Smart Meter would be a custom mixed-signal ASIC. You could fit the microcontroller with ADC and flash, the BlueTooth/Zigbee radio and the current sensor in less than a fingernail.

Yep, Exactly. Well, Maybe the current sensor would be seperate, And ADC for noise reasons, but basicly yea. Monitoring 60hz power waveforms is a cakewalk compaired to data aquasition boards running at 200msps (Good for monitoring 20,000,000hz waveforms with detail) after you take into account RF/noise/layout/data bandwidth/etc.

I was talking about if I had to make one from off the shelf ADC's/microcontrollers and flash chips etc that I can buy off digikey for aprox $3~10 each IC quanity 1, would result in a 1" square pcb, minus the 1" square hall current sensor or current shunt.

Any blind monkey can do PCB layout at 1Mhz. It takes a pro to do 200Mhz layout.

Not to mention, your example was a board thats sold what, maybe 100? 1000? And is a throwback to how many years ago? And designed to do about 200x as fast as needed for this application? For industrial applications? I think my macro scopes are a LOT closer to whats needed for this application, And the price and size shows its really no problem at all.

PS: I have designed circuits in the past, Including high speed FPGA circuits that interfaced with car ECU's. You would be suprised how simple it is to make an accurate, high resolution data loging 1msps current meter.

Evan
08-11-2011, 01:30 PM
I might be a bit outdated concerning the requirements of "Real Time Monitoring" of "Events" or what others suggest are "Electrical Signatures" but from what they had available 15 years ago it is not going to "fit" into the footprint of a utility meter.

It doesn't need to fit in the meter. The meter does have some analysis capability including power factor measurement. The rest of the package is the "Home Gateway" device that will be installed after the meter network is complete. Look at my post above with the Definition of an Advanced Metering Infrastructure (AMI). The Gateway has the analysis capability and control system for on/off control of individual devices.

JoeFin
08-11-2011, 01:38 PM
Will maybe I'm dating myself. The Miniscope you showed would do it but you would need 4 of them. Also you would some how need to address the Heat issues and shielding requirements for the environment. To asses .pf or Kvar accurately you need a sample rate 60 x 360 x 4 or roughly 10ms. Easy enough to reduce the scale to 30 volts sampling only voltage between 90 and 130v.

Now add all the data together (8 bits per input plus 2 calculated variables = 6) and assemble that into packets and times the number of meters on the utility grid

Its kind of a lot - at least too much to hide

Black_Moons
08-11-2011, 01:54 PM
Will maybe I'm dating myself. The Miniscope you showed would do it but you would need 4 of them. Also you would some how need to address the Heat issues and shielding requirements for the environment. To asses .pf or Kvar accurately you need a sample rate 60 x 360 x 4 or roughly 10ms. Easy enough to reduce the scale to 30 volts sampling only voltage between 90 and 130v.

Now add all the data together (8 bits per input plus 2 calculated variables = 6) and assemble that into packets and times the number of meters on the utility grid
Its kind of a lot - at least too much to hide

... 10mS? Check your math buddy. 10mS is a freqency of 100hz. You can't sample 60hz with a 100hz sampleing rate and expect to get any useful information.
60hz * 360 samples (1 for each degree? Not that degrees are needed...) * 4 (... what? Where did * 4 come in?) = 86,400hz. My sound card samples at a faster rate then that!

And really that was just a demo of how cheap and small the parts can be.. that has a whole color screen and UI for $90. How much do you think the ADC cost? And its got a friggen 32bit cpu on it, that could surely handle the data from a few more ADCs.

In a day and age where I can download 100megs in under 10 minutes, Why is a meter sending a few megs/day (it really only needs to send data on 1 full cycle every few minutes) hard to believe?

And what do you mean 'sampleing only beween 90 and 130v' thats quite silly, when say... Two resistors in a voltage devider can drop 120v ac down to 12v ac or whatever your ADC's perfered scale is (More likey 3v max or less).

Address the heat issues? Most electronics is rated for 100c min, More like 125~150c for most stuff. Also last I checked the EXISTING 'smart' meters have been reading very wrong when hot, So its not like the power company is conserned about heat or shielding with the current models apparently.

I have absolutely no idea how the power meters 'read high' when hot either, At best the tempco would throw the readings off a couple %, and could be compensated by a $1 tempature IC wired into the uC with a correction lookup table. I would suspect more that the meters where designed to read high when hot. ie: when people turn on there AC and expect higher bills.

And who said the power company would try hiding anything? Infact, who would even trust the power company to sufficently secure all the data they collect? I sure would'nt.

Apparnetly even the police can't figure out how to secure thier own radios. http://blogs.wsj.com/digits/2011/08/10/security-flaws-in-feds-radios-make-for-easy-eavesdropping/

For some more math, Lets say every minute, we sample one full AC waveform, 360 times (Again, 100times is likey more then enough, but i'll use joefins 360 number for fun) at 12 bits. We sample both phases and voltage just incase voltage isent sine
360 samples * 12bits * 4 channels = 17,280 bits = 2,160 bytes.
1,440 minutes per day = 3,110,400 bytes a day = 93megs after 30 days.
My monthly internet limit is... 80,000megs.
Even if the thing had to dialup on a 56k phone line, it would only take aprox 5 hours to send an entire months data, About the same speed over 2G phone networks... 3G, what the networks are being upgraded to, is good for 20mbps upload.. or about 46 seconds to upload a months data.

JoeFin
08-11-2011, 02:23 PM
Well "Excuse me" I meant 10 microsecond obviously.

The 4 came in because you would need to sample 2ea Amperage inputs and 2ea voltage inputs to see the type of events you are talking about. And without throwing rocks - only sampling between 90 - 130v lowers the resolution requirements of your device. Lets say you have a 60,000 count A/D now you can apply that across a 40v range as opposed to a 130 volt range because when the voltage dips below 90v your in a brown out anyway.

As for 100c thermal range of ICs - well err - my cell phone shuts off around 95F as do most modern ICs. 150F ICs were considered Military Grade back in the day and if you leave you phone on the dash of your car on a 80F day (under glass JUST like an electrical meter) its going to shut off in 20 - 30 minutes.

Like I said you would need to address the thermal and EMF issues for what you say to be true. And then fit it in a meter footprint

Not saying it couldn't be done - just saying on the massive scale we are discussing it would be extremely cost prohibitive

Now think about "Sneaking" all that data past paranoid types who insist this is the prelude to 1 world government. I'm a little skeptical to say the least

Tell you what - I'll send the neighbor kid around the corner to fetch me 1 of the Smart Meters installed 4 months ago from an abandoned/foreclosed home - smash it open and post pictures and we can all see whats inside

<On Edit>

360 samples PER Second x 4 is what you would need - I get 1.1 Gig still not a lot by today's standards

Not throwing rocks - just honest hypothetical analyst

Black_Moons
08-11-2011, 02:34 PM
Well "Excuse me" I meant 10 microsecond obviously.

The 4 came in because you would need to sample 2ea Amperage inputs and 2ea voltage inputs to see the type of events you are talking about. And without throwing rocks - only sampling between 90 - 130v lowers the resolution requirements of your device. Lets say you have a 60,000 count A/D now you can apply that across a 40v range as opposed to a 130 volt range because when the voltage dips below 90v your in a brown out anyway.

As for 100c thermal range of ICs - well err - my cell phone shuts off around 95F as do most modern ICs. 150F ICs were considered Military Grade back in the day and if you leave you phone on the dash of your car on a 80F day (under glass JUST like an electrical meter) its going to shut off in 20 - 30 minutes.

Like I said you would need to address the thermal and EMF issues for what you say to be true. And then fit it in a meter footprint

Not saying it couldn't be done - just saying on the massive scale we are discussing it would be extremely cost prohibitive

Now think about "Sneaking" all that data past paranoid types who insist this is the prelude to 1 world government. I'm a little skeptical to say the least

Tell you what - I'll send the neighbor kid around the corner to fetch me 1 of the Smart Meters installed 4 months ago from an abandoned/foreclosed home - smash it open and post pictures and we can all see whats inside

AC is.. a waveform, If you only sampled down to 90v, you'd be missing most of the waveform and hence most of the data.

As far as IC's shuting down... They don't, Not without deticated thermonitors that detect tempature and shut them down. No, most work happilty to 100c+. Iv seen semiconductors in operation that you can littarly pour water on and it boils. It used to be you where told to lick your finger before touching ram chips.. Thats because if they where over 100c you would hear the sissle and know not to grab it.

Your cell phone shuts down for one simple reason: it does not want the lipo blowing up, Lipos can NOT handle 100c. Thankful a power meter is... connected to power.

CPU's shut down because the internal die tempature has past 100c+ by time the heatsink tempature hits 50c due to thermal resistance.

As far as sneaking the data past them... They allready are just going around and replacing meters with no consent or notification. They can just say "You either take this new fangled meter, Or we cut your power off. Your choice"

Massive scales make things CHEAPER. much cheaper. Look at all the electronics at the local dollar store (or deal extreme) for under $10, You can't even buy the cases for most of that stuff in quanity 1, let alone half the other parts its made outta.

When things are done in massive scale, propritary ASIC's can be designed and used, Entire computer systems with the power of a desktop of just 10 years ago can easily fit on a single die so small, if you where to put it into your pocket, you would lose it among your pocket lint. And said IC's only cost a couple dollars in quanity million. (Factoring in the million dollar~ cost for development, one off litho masks, etc)

How many houses in the USA? how many in canada? Im sure theres more then a million power meters given the USA has 300,000,000 people and canada has 33,000,000.

So whats cheaper, puting $2 IC's in every power meter to monitor (And as evan says, eventualy remotely shut down your appliances as needed), Or making more $100,000,000 dollar power plants just to service peak demand? Not to mention the value of the data to be sold to 3rd partys, Likey again with the option of "you let us sell your personal information to 3rd partys, Or we cut off your power."

Weston Bye
08-11-2011, 02:38 PM
I don't want to get into the tinfoil hat discussion surrounding these smart meters, other than to point out that Joe is right about the temperature ratings of ICs and other electronic devices.

*Most* have two grades of temperature rating; 85°C and 125°C. in vehicle applications we can usually get away with the lower temperature devices almost anywhere on the vehicle except the engine compartment. In special applications like in engines and transmissions the requirements are higher. Where a device does not exist, that is, the manufacturer will not certify the part for an extreme temperature, we are sometimes able to use the part anyway if we certify through testing that the part will survive and function in the application for the life of the vehicle.

JoeFin
08-11-2011, 02:40 PM
perhaps you can provide a link to a CPU data sheet that states it can operate in 100c environments

Honestly I would like to see that

Mcgyver
08-11-2011, 02:51 PM
Totally different than a power meter reading what is going on. The only thing they have in common is there is electricity involved.

And they used graphic chips to do the heavy lifting, which in themselves are supercomputers.

that's what I thought....it stores a sample every few minutes of consumption so they can bill. What they get is a 10:00 you're using x watts, and 10:06, your using y watts etc. Once a day it ups it. How do you tell what's running from that?

I would think it takes a very different technology set to look for things like signatures of an induction motor among resistive loads like toasters and light bulbs. Sophisticated electronic test equipment is big bucks, 10's of thousands. Your utility buys a smart meter for $68. Even if smart meters were 100k, I'd still wonder whether even with a van load of equipment that they can tell one resistive load from another to the point identify the item consuming power.

Most importantly, why would they bother? There are opt in programs that say let the utility turn on or off your air conditioner.....however this is done via a device installed on the air conditioner. The smart meter might be used as a data relay, but it doesn't know or care whats turned on/off

Weston Bye
08-11-2011, 02:56 PM
Certain Microchip microcontrollers are rated for 150°C operation.

http://www.microchip.com/stellent/idcplg?IdcService=SS_GET_PAGE&nodeId=2844&param=en544822

While not full-blown CPUs, these devices are intended for dedicated applications as would be found in power monitoring equipment.

Black_Moons
08-11-2011, 02:59 PM
perhaps you can provide a link to a CPU data sheet that states it can operate in 100c environments

Honestly I would like to see that

Sure:

http://www.atmel.com/dyn/resources/prod_documents/doc7701.pdf
Standard automotive avr microcontroller
Page 4 shows its rated -40c to +125, automotive tempature grade (the only grade that uC comes in)

Page 188 shows graphs with specs for 125C operation.
Page 189 has graphs with -40c, 25c, 85c and 125 operation curves for power consumption.
Page 205 shows internal RC freqency from -40c to +125c, graphed by tempature.

page 214 shows ordering information clearly listing: OPERATIONAL RANGE: -40c to 125c, standard automotive tempature range.

Power disipation in micrcontrollers is minimal (a few 100mW) so unless i/o's are heavily loaded, they can operate to the very top of thier operational range in ambiant conditions with no consern about the die being that much hotter then the heatsink/ambiant tempature.

Want some more? Pick one! http://www.atmel.com/dyn/products/devices.asp?category_id=163&family_id=607&subfamily_id=1723&source=left_nav

Including some higher end 32bit microcontrollers, incase reading an ADC, storing the value on a flash chip and then sending the data off without any processing at all, somehow requires more then the absolute min processing power you can buy.

http://search.digikey.com/scripts/DkSearch/dksus.dll?Cat=2556109 Also lets you search by tempature range. I really wonder about those uC's specing -55 to +225C, course they are $400+ in cerdip.
http://www51.honeywell.com/aero/common/documents/myaerospacecatalog-documents/Missiles-Munitions/HT83C51-_High_Temperature_83C51_Microcontroller.pdf
"these microcontrollers provide guaranteed performance supporting operating frequencies in excess of 16 MHz over the full -55 to +225ºC temperature range. Typically, parts will operate up to +300ºC for a year, with derated performance. " ... I could of sworn silicon melts around 175c... but whatever. Im not gonna argue with milspec part specs.

JoeFin
08-11-2011, 03:13 PM
I want to thank everyone for allowing me to engage in the conversation

It has been a wonderfully eye opening hypothetical analysis - but now respectfully I'll have to disengage.

While I still have my doubts the current revision of Smart Meters can detect, record, and transmit the data in question as to determine type of loads being consumed. Black Moons, Evan, and this thread certainly have awoken the realization in me that soon a future revision of Smart Meters may indeed be able to do this in the near future.

Which raises the larger question and 1 which is being posed more and more frequently in our society "Should they be allowed to gather such information". Every thing from computer cookies to security camera / face recognition software intrudes into our lives at an ever increasing frequency with little or no oversight. Sadly all to often this goes unchecked under the guise of "Loss Prevention" and "Security". In the words of Benjamen Franklin - "Those that give up Freedoms for Security have neither"

Respectfully to the site administrators - my thoughts have now wondered to the political nature of personal freedoms vs: corporations and respectfully I'll disengage

:) Joe

Black_Moons
08-11-2011, 03:24 PM
I want to thank everyone for allowing me to engage in the conversation

It has been a wonderfully eye opening hypothetical analysis - but now respectfully I'll have to disengage.

While I still have my doubts the current revision of Smart Meters can detect, record, and transmit the data in question as to determine type of loads being consumed. Black Moons, Evan, and this thread certainly have awoken the realization in me that soon a future revision of Smart Meters may indeed be able to do this in the near future.

Which raises the larger question and 1 which is being posed more and more frequently in our society "Should they be allowed to gather such information". Every thing from computer cookies to security camera / face recognition software intrudes into our lives at an ever increasing frequency with little or no oversight. Sadly all to often this goes unchecked under the guise of "Loss Prevention" and "Security". In the words of Benjamen Franklin - "Those that give up Freedoms for Security have neither"

Respectfully to the site administrators - my thoughts have now wondered to the political nature of personal freedoms vs: corporations and respectfully I'll disengage

:) Joe

Not saying the current revision of smart meters can do this, but they very well could, and the fact is they are very close, getting thier foot in the door and building a network for the next generation to use, And the lack of proper spec information on them does not help anyones fears, And the fact once they install these meters, Whats to stop the next revision from doing exactly what I say?

"Just upgrading your power meter, Don't mind us. Turns out the last one was a few % inaccurate, you'll really like this new meter! And don't worry, we'r only.. raising your rates a few % whenever your consumption goes over 1kW... to help pay for the new meters.. that will save you THOUSANDS! im sure.... assuming the meter shuts off power to your house (and fridge) while your away for the weekend"

Just look at airports for a great example of a slipery slope to totaly lack of any privacy, Including but not limited to: Full body cavity searchs based on absolutely no evidence, Ionizing radiation 'through cloth' scans by machines well known to store and record images (dispite everyone being told they cant) mandated for EVERYONE, And being arrested for just 'acting suspicious', with no real definition or qualification what that is.

Honestly, if modren airport security was shown as a movie to people 20 years ago, they would laugh at the insane sci-fi movie you where showing them.

Now, you'd be arrested for laughing too loudly in the airport, And maybe sentenced to 10+ years after they find a corrupt file on your laptop (or mp3 player) that MUST be encypted, else they would be able to open it, but you won't surrender the password. (Or maybe its just a file made by a program from a company who went out of buisness and you long since deleted that program)

lazlo
08-11-2011, 03:42 PM
http://www.atmel.com/dyn/resources/prod_documents/doc7701.pdf[/url]
Standard automotive avr microcontroller
Page 4 shows its rated -40c to +125, automotive tempature grade (the only grade that uC comes in)

In the old days (up to around 1990), there were three general grades of semiconductor operating temperatures:

Commercial grade: 0 to 70° C
Automotive grade: −40 to 85° C
Military grade: −55 to 125° C

But microprocessors have so wildly exceeded the process geometries and transistor switching speeds of automotive and military semiconductors that those ratings are now meaningless.

With state of the art process geometry, the chip lifespan is proportional to the Tj (transistor junction temperature). So consumer microprocessors are normally rated up to ~ 85° C, and server and mobile (laptop) microprocessors are rated up to 100° C. Note that's the transistor junction temperature -- the Commercial/Automotive/Military ratings are ambient ratings.

But mixed-signal devices usually are several process generations behind, and can afford to run much hotter...

Black_Moons
08-11-2011, 03:54 PM
But mixed-signal devices usually are several process generations behind, and can afford to run much hotter...

Most microcontrollers are actualy mixed signal these days as they have onboard ADC's/compairitors/RC clocks etc.

But more to the point, when doing quanity million stuff, you can economicaly have ASIC's (Application-specific integrated circuit) made, Where you can basicly get whatever temp range you are willing to afford/make other tradeoffs for, And have it done in whatever process size/type you want.

But yea, bleeding edge stuff has much lower max tempature limits, Especialy CPU's and such as they disipate so much heat, even though the case might be only 50C before shutdown, the internals of the die might be 100C+ allready.

In this case, bleeding edge is hardly needed, All thats needed is to read ADC's at 100khz (Some uC's come with ADC's that fast!) and store it to flash. Processing can be done after the data is sent to the power company. (Or light processing can be done during the 59.9 second periods beween 1 minute 1 cycle sampleing periods)

Nowdays if you look at simpler semiconductors like mosfets, Tempature grades for +125/+150c/+175c are rather common.
Capacitors are actualy the biggest problem with high tempature circuits, Electrolytics fail within a few 1000 hours at rated tempature, And most are only rated 85c or 105c. Don't recall seeing much if any in +125c or higher, But im sure there are 150c+ caps if you look hard enough and have a deep enough wallet.

Thankfuly in this application I doubt too many capacitors would be needed due to the limited processing power required and lack of any large loads being switched on the circuit itself.

PS: I really like this thread. It has been about facts, What can/can't be done, While a little off topic, we have kept it from being locked dispite 19 pages by keeping it clean and to the point of power meters.

On topic threads are great, but I think george needs to let us rant a little more now and then about socity and whats going on outside our shops, Especialy when it can affect what goes on inside our shops. Its good for blowing off steam.

lazlo
08-11-2011, 03:54 PM
In the words of Benjamen Franklin - "Those that give up Freedoms for Security have neither"


"They who can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety, deserve neither liberty nor safety."

That's why I was so irritated with the Patriot Act, warrentless wiretaps et al.

Black_Moons
08-11-2011, 04:04 PM
"They who can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety, deserve neither liberty nor safety."

That's why I was so irritated with the Patriot Act, warrentless wiretaps et al.

I allways liked: "If you want total security, go to prison. There you're fed, clothed, given medical care and so on. The only thing lacking is freedom." - Dwight Eisenhower

Anyone who wants more security, Please, Go to prison, I'll happly pay for your food/clothing/etc just so long as you leave the rest of us alone with our freedom. :rolleyes:

Oddly enough, both these quotes can be found on the front page of a news site I visit often.

lazlo
08-11-2011, 04:05 PM
Most microcontrollers are actualy mixed signal these days as they have onboard ADC's/compairitors/RC clocks etc.

Meaningless techno-babble to most, but you can build ADC's, PLL's etc in bulk cmos, which I thought is what most microcontrollers are manufactured on.

Edit: Just checked, and AVR, for example, is manufactured on standard low-power bulk cmos process. The TI MSPxx series are mixed-signal.


But yea, bleeding edge stuff has much lower max tempature limits, Especialy CPU's and such as they disipate so much heat, even though the case might be only 50C before shutdown, the internals of the die might be 100C+ allready.

Yah, that 250° C microprocontroller you linked from Honeywell is hilarious: it's a 8051 in a DIP package. That's (literally!) over 30 years old :) I'd ballpark it at around 250K gates. The part I just finished working on had a billion gates :)

In any event, I'm in complete agreement -- not only is a cheap data logging line monitor totally feasible, I'd be shocked if that isn't what they've built and deployed.

It's a lot like the RFID chips in the new passports and driver's licenses. You have no idea what data is being kept, and since it's non-contact, you have no idea when and what someone is reading from it. When the Mythbusters started to do an episode on the RFID's, Discovery Channel was the subject of a massive smackdown from the credit card companies, and the episode was never aired.

http://www.youtube.com/v/-St_ltH90Oc

Black_Moons
08-11-2011, 04:18 PM
Yah, that 250° C microprocontroller you linked from Honeywell is hilarious: it's a 8051 in a DIP package. That's (literally!) over 30 years old :) I'd ballpark it at around 250K gates. The part I just finished working on had a billion gates :)

In any event, I'm in complete agreement -- not only is a cheap data logging line monitor totally feasible, I'd be shocked if that isn't what they've built and deployed.

It's a lot like the RFID chips in the new passports and driver's licenses. You have no idea what data is being kept, and since it's non-contact, you have no idea when and what someone is reading from it. When the Mythbusters started to do an episode on the RFID's, Discovery Channel was the subject of a massive smackdown from the credit card companies, and the episode was never aired.

Yea, Mil spec parts are a riot. Most of them are so old its like caveman techonology.

8051 is still kinda widely used, suprisingly enough. Cerdip is a good package for insane envorments. I don't think SMD works well during impact events etc. PS: that chip is $500 at digikey. lol (non stocked!)

Don't get me started on RFID! Worse yet, RFID payment systems like fastpay. I like my muggers to at least have to pickpocket me to get my credit card, Not just walk by within 3' smiling, without it ever leaving my pocket, leaving no evidence its even stolen.

As far as the mythbuster ep: Remember credit card companys: If you have nothing to hide, you have nothing to fear... Oh.. you do have something to hide? Like the fact even electricaly braindead mythbusters could easily crack your RFID system? Well then, That is a problem!

macona
08-11-2011, 04:33 PM
The 68HC11 is still around too, popping its head up where you least expect it.

JoeFin
08-11-2011, 04:36 PM
I know I promised - but I have to leave 1 more thought for this conversation

Back in the early 90s when we did Event Monitoring, Kw, Kvar substation work in a digital platform, we had the WHOLE 100 acre 18 building site controlled under a network of PLCs and Microcontrollers and controlled 1000s facility loads such as cooling towers, chillers, process pumps and even all the air conditioners servicing all 18 buildings. We logged and recorded via networked SCADA temps, run times, vitually every thing except proprietary process controls for the process.

They went Ape Sh$t

All the data logs were dumped to the Mainframe every night and some Bean Counter was taking the raw data and imputing it through excell spread sheets and by monitoring the production area temp increases vs: Elec load decreases he was able to determine when and how fast each production Thin Film Coating machine was turned around by the shift operator

I only found out because I had to take one of the SCADA processors offline for a couple hours and he complained through the VP of the Corp of the "Loss of HIS Data"

aboard_epsilon
08-11-2011, 05:05 PM
they are using Bluetooth on ours ...this i take is not RFID

all the best.markj

Mcgyver
08-11-2011, 06:23 PM
they are using Bluetooth on ours ...this i take is not RFID

all the best.markj

why couldn't you call it active RFID? Its communicating via radio frequencies and has a unique ID that it broadcasts

macona
08-11-2011, 06:44 PM
why couldn't you call it active RFID? Its communicating via radio frequencies and has a unique ID that it broadcasts


RFID is pretty specific to one kind of technology. Kind of like the PLC discussion that took place many months ago.

I am surprised they would use bluetooth. Short range, about 30 feet. Maybe 100 on a good day. It may be for configuration.

Mcgyver
08-11-2011, 06:57 PM
RFID is pretty specific to one kind of technology. Kind of like the PLC discussion that took place many months ago.
.

don't remember that one. I know most people think of RFID as a passive tag stuck on a box as moves through a supply chain or a chip in a ID badge....but that's just because its a common use for the term. There are a bunch of different active, passive and inductive coupling technologies that their respective industries call RFID.... point being whether you call it RFID or not doesn't matter; its doing the same thing - automated RF broadcast with a unique ID.

Call me anything you like but don't call me late for dinner :D

Evan
08-11-2011, 07:04 PM
This is the blurb about the meters being installed here. For detailed info see here: https://itron.com/na/PublishedContent/OpenWay%20Centron%20Meter.pdf

http://ixian.ca/pics9/centron.gif

There is a lot of processing power built into the meter and it has a lot of storage capability too. The meters can also act as relays for other utility meters. They are definitely capable of determining power use profiles with default resolution of 15 minutes. That can be changed to whatever they want including 1 minute and still have plenty of storage. Because it is in realtime communication even less than one minute granularity is possible.

The question I have is what sort of flag will be raised when they see a load cycle that doesn't fit any profile they have in their database. For instance, my heat treat oven set to cool down at a few degrees per hour for several days.

Black_Moons
08-11-2011, 07:24 PM
There is a lot of processing power built into the meter and it has a lot of storage capability too. The meters can also act as relays for other utility meters. They are definitely capable of determining power use profiles with default resolution of 15 minutes. That can be changed to whatever they want including 1 minute and still have plenty of storage. Because it is in realtime communication even less than one minute granularity is possible.

The question I have is what sort of flag will be raised when they see a load cycle that doesn't fit any profile they have in their database. For instance, my heat treat oven set to cool down at a few degrees per hour for several days.

They likey send the RCMP over to check exactly what the load is. Yaknow, Not violating your civil rights or anything, just a.. Safty inspection! Cough. Cough. I need to get that cough looked at.

I wonder what happens when enough EMI occures to trip the 'tamper' switch.

Im guessing.. they send the RCMP over to arrest you. And use the meter itself as 'evidence'... Maybe pulling it right from your house, So you have no power till.... Well, Till the hydro company charges you for a new meter and you pay up. Then likey charge you for how much power they 'think' you might of stolen, Assuming you don't just get convicted of power theft and sent to jail, Because the meter says so, And it surely can't be wrong. you must of just done a really good job of hiding your tampering job.