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Term Definition

Pulse meter

A water, gas, or electricity meter whose output is a series of electrical pulses, each one representing a specific quantity consumed (e.g. 10 or 100 gallons of water). Pulse meters are less accurate but more affordable than Encoded meters.

RBC

An acronym that stands for Read, Bill, and Collect. Usually a company that contracts with property owners to manage their utility consumption and payment collection.

Receiver

In a Radio Frequency (RF) based AMR system, the device that receives the meter data transmissions. These transmissions can then be forwarded to either a WAN Gateway or a central data collection device.

Repeater

In a Radio Frequency (RF) based AMR system, the device that receives and amplifies the meter RF signals in order to transmit them to the Receiver.

Research

National Multi-Family Submetering and Allocation Study – A rigorous study, commissioned by a consortium of federal, state, and municipal authorities to research the effects that submetering and other types of allocation methods had on water usage. The study found that only submetering led to a significant reduction in usage, 15 percent in fact! All other systems methods simply did not work.

Maye et al - National Multiple Family Submetering Study (6.3 MB).pdf

RF

An acronym that stands for Radio Frequency.

RUBS

An acronym that stands for Ratio Utility Billing System, which is a calculation method that uses a compensation factor to allocate costs among users. It also stands for Residential Utility Billing System. In using RUBS, residents are not actually charged for what the amount of water they used, rather, a fairly crude formula is used to apportion a fragment of the total bill to them.

Service provider

Generally used to describe either a submetering/billing service provider or a provider of utilities.

Slow-leak

An alarm alerting the AMR site’s manager that a specific property’s usage appears to indicate the presence of a slowly leaking appliance, usually but not always a toilet. See also Unusual consumption alerts.

Submetering

The practice of using meters to measure mater-metered utility consumption by individual users. Also see, partial-capture submetering and total-capture submetering.

Telemetry interface unit

A device that translates meter data prior to transmission to a receiver. Also known as a Meter Interface Unit (see MIU).

Total-capture submetering

A type of submetering where all of the actual water consumption in each unit is measured.

Transmitter

A Radio Frequency (RF) system component that sends usage data from a Meter to a Receiver.

Utility

Used alternately to describe a provided natural resource, such as water, gas, or electricity as well as for the provider of the resource (also see Service Provider).

Utility allocation

Determining resident charges for utilities by means of a formula rather than measured usage.

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