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Unitil Smart Grid Pilot Program
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Lead Organization:
Unitil Corporation
HQ Location:
Hampton, New Hampshire
Project Contact Information:

6 Liberty Lane West
Hampton, NH 03842-1720
Contact: http://unitil.com/request-information

Project Summary:

Unitil is a public utility holding company with affiliates that include Unitil Energy Systems, Inc., Fitchburg Gas and Electric Light Company, Northern Utilities, Inc., and Granite State Gas Transmission, Inc. Together, Unitil’s operating utilities are serivng approximately 100,500 electric customers and 70,000, natural gas customers in Maine, Massachusetts and New Hampshire [1].

Unitil has submitted the petition for approval of a smart grid pilot program in April 2010 [2]. "Unitil proposes to conduct its smart grid pilot program during June, July and August of 2010 (Exh. Unitil-1, at 11). Unitil’s proposed smart grid pilot program consists of two components: (1) a Demand Reduction program that will evaluate the demand reduction impacts of different combinations of time-of-use rates and enabling technologies; and (2) a Distribution Automation program that will address distribution capacitor bank control, power quality monitoring, and Supervisory Control and Data Acquisition (“SCADA”) system development (id. at 8-12). The Company states that these smart grid pilot program components, in conjunction with the two-way communication capabilities provided by its existing advanced metering infrastructure, satisfy the requirements of the Green Communities Act (id. at 3)".

According to [3], Unitil, which already had installed an early AMI metering system for all its customers, completed their pilot program. Unitil used a TOU rate with and without enhanced technology and smart thermostats. They found power reductions (kW) with the TOU without enhanced technology of 21% on-peak and 42% during the critical peak period. The savings with the enhanced technology added increased to 35% for on-peak and 70% during the critical peak. The customer bill savings averaged 5% for the simple TOU and 7% with the enhanced technology.


[1] Unitil, URL: http://unitil.com/company/territory-map
[2] Petition of Fitchburg Gas and Electric Light Company d/b/a Unitil for approval of a smart grid pilot program, April 2010.
[3] "Massachusetts Electric Grid Modernization Stakeholder Working Group Process: Report to the Department of Public Utilities from the Steering Committee", Raab Associates, Ltd. & Synapse Energy Economics, Inc., July 2013. URL: http://www.mass.gov/eea/docs/dpu/electric/grid-mod/ma-grid-mod-working-g...