GMP is first utility to offer Span Smart Panel, replaces home electric panel

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GMP is first utility to offer Span Smart Panel, replaces home electric panel

Wed, 04/21/2021 - 1:21pm -- tim

New GMP Pilot Program Will Also Use the Smart Panel as a Meter, Transforming How Customers Use Energy, Accelerate Transition from Fossil Fuel to Clean Energy

Vermont Business Magazine Green Mountain Power (GMP) has launched a new pilot program to empower residential customers with new technology to simplify the transition to clean energy for home heating, vehicle charging, solar generation and energy storage. GMP is the first utility in the country to work with Span to offer the Span Smart Panel. The Span Smart Panel replaces the traditional home electric panel, and will give customers an easy way to understand and control energy use from anywhere, while helping all GMP customers as the technology can foster a more flexible, resilient, green grid.

Plus, the smart panel can do much more than a traditional home panel, including replacing the meter to also measure energy use.

“Most of us pay little if any attention to our electrical panel except for when we trip a breaker but these panels can be a game-changer for customers who are eager to gain more control over their energy use,” said GMP President and CEO Mari McClure. “Imagine there’s an outage at your home while you’re away. This device alerts you and you can immediately and easily access your electrical panel through an app on your phone to prioritize how to deploy the energy in your Tesla Powerwall or other backup battery. This type of technology is the future and we’re excited to be the first to share it with our customers.”

The panel is the first full replacement for the traditional home electric panel with all the functionality and safety features, plus smart technology for metering, monitoring and device control integration. The smart panel was developed by a team of former Tesla engineers who recognized that the main electric panel in everyone’s homes can also be a barrier to easy adoption of sustainable technologies like solar panels, electric vehicles, heat pumps and home batteries. By reinventing the panel to be intelligent and integrated with those devices, they aim to radically reduce the cost and complexity for customers to shift from fossil fuel to clean electricity-powered resources for their homes.

“Green Mountain Power is a leader in energy transformation, constantly innovating in ways that have a positive impact for their customers,” said Arch Rao, founder and CEO of Span. “We’re very excited to launch this pilot program with them and show the benefits to Vermont.  Our smart panel will help GMP and its customers continue to exceed clean energy goals.”

The pilot program will enroll 100 customers, who will receive a Span Smart Panel installed at no cost, to test electrical load management and metering capabilities, as well as integrating the panel with distributed resources like batteries, EV chargers and solar panels. Customers will benefit by seeing real-time circuit-level data on usage to empower them to make smart energy choices at home, while all GMP customers benefit through additional resources made available for grid flexibility, like reducing peak energy demand, when power can be dirtiest and most expensive for customers.

GMP will reach out to customers to form a representative sample, to help determine how the technology can benefit all GMP customers and the Vermont grid – including customers with solar panels, EV chargers and other technologies at home.

Local solar and battery companies are partnering with GMP to do the installations, and Green Mountain Solar of Williston, Vt. is the first to become a certified installer for the pilot.

“We’re so glad to work with customers and this new technology in partnership with GMP. We are all about helping customers control and optimize their use of energy and that’s what this panel can do. It is great that GMP is being forward thinking and offering this, as Vermont continues to lead the way on innovation,” said Paul Lesure, Green Mountain Solar’s founder.

More details about the Span pilot program are on GMP’s website.

About Green Mountain Power

Green Mountain Power (GMP) serves approximately 266,000 residential and business customers in Vermont and is partnering with them to improve lives and transform communities. GMP is focused on a new way of doing business to meet the needs of customers with integrated energy services that help people use less energy and save money, while continuing to generate clean, cost-effective and reliable power in Vermont. GMP is the first utility in the world to get a B Corp certification, meeting rigorous social, environmental, accountability and transparency standards and committing to use business as a force for good. GMP earned a spot on Fast Company’s Most Innovative Companies in the World list four years in a row (2017, 2018, 2019, 2020).  In 2021, the Smart Electric Power Alliance (SEPA) honored GMP as a nationwide leader in energy transformation, and in 2019 GMP earned the Deane C. Davis Outstanding Vermont Business of the Year Award from the Vermont Chamber of Commerce and Vermont Business Magazine.

Source: COLCHESTER, Vt. – Green Mountain Power 4.21.2021