The deployment of smart meters in businesses and homes across northern Illinois is continuing. The Chicago Tribune reports that ComEd is installing the devices across Park Ridge, which is the latest advance of a project that began in 2011.
The meters transmit data for an average period of three minutes per day. The smart meters end the practice of estimated billing. Despite these benefits, objections to smart meters exist. They include fear of radio waves, loss of privacy — though ComEd says that data isn’t sold — and the possibility that the meters start fires.
Smart meters services may be getting smarter. The National Science Foundation has awarded a three-year, $1 million grant to researchers at The University of Maryland-Baltimore County, Williams College of Williamstown, MA and The University of Massachusetts Amherst. The schools will work with Holyoke Gas & Electric to develop smart energy services. Smart meter research will be among the goals.