INDIANAPOLIS — Carrier Corp. will supply approximately 40,000 ComfortChoice® thermostats to Oklahoma Gas & Electric (OG&E) for its SmartHours® program. The thermostats will be provided through the Silver Spring Networks smart energy network as part of an energy demand management program facilitated by OG&E. The SmartHours program aims to reduce peak demand for electricity and avoid building any new, incremental fossil-fuel-fired energy generation until at least 2020. Thus far in the program, OG&E residential SmartHours customers with programmable thermostats have achieved an average peak reduction of about 2 kW per home. The program achieved approximately 70 MW peak demand reduction from 40,000 SmartHours customers in 2012, reaching a total of 110,000 homes by the summer of 2014.

“Managing energy consumption programs like SmartHours is an exciting prospect and opportunity for Carrier to further establish our expertise in energy management,” said Chris Nelson, president, North America HVAC Systems & Service, Carrier, which is part of UTC Building & Industrial Systems, a unit of United Technologies Corp. “Carrier is committed to working with utilities across the country to create smart, sustainable communities where industry and utilities partner for the benefit of consumers.”

The program, which uses Silver Spring’s standards-based IPv6 network, contains dynamic pricing that signals customers when to shift their energy use to match usage to off-peak hours. Price signals are then delivered through the end-to-end Silver Spring CustomerIQ™ solution, providing customers with timely, decision-making information as well as automatic response from smart thermostat technology based on personal preferences. Customers receive notice of peak pricing a day ahead to manage their energy use more efficiently.

“Smart thermostats have enabled our customers to automate their responses to dynamic price signals and notifications and effectively reduce their peak consumption and the amount of their bill,” said Mike Farrell, senior manager of analytics and support, OG&E. “From the first customer study through our third year of deployment, the program and its supporting technology have sustained high-performance results. It’s proved to be an important contributing factor for reducing peak demand, a key goal that benefits our company and customers.”

Nelson added, “Homeowners benefit from lower energy costs while peak demand for electricity decreases. The combination of the SmartHours program and Carrier’s ComfortChoice thermostats is great for the environment and consumers.”

Publication date: 5/25/2015 

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