Uday2294
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Joined: Thu Jul 05, 2018 2:57 pm

Utility meter reading using raspberry pi

Thu Jul 05, 2018 3:03 pm

Hello Guys, I'm new to raspberry pi and have been exploring this great product, I have a project to work on and thought I might need your help on this.
So here it is, I'm planning to make a utility meter reader using raspberry pi for gas,water and electricity, Is it possible to make something like that?
I'm trying the ultrasonic sensor for the water pipes but have not been successful yet, and I tried CT sensor for electricity. Any inputs from you guys would be much appreciated.

Thank You guys

wh7qq
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Re: Utility meter reading using raspberry pi

Thu Jul 05, 2018 8:21 pm

Gas flow will be hard and potentially dangerous but there may exist paddle wheel type sensors for this. I have no experience with the ultrasonic flowmeter for water but the low level of particulate matter in household water would be a problem. Ultrasonic needs something moving to reflect off. The paddle wheel type sensors might be easier to use. If you have 2 phase 220 service (as in US), you will need two CT sensors but there is a lot of info on them in the pages of https://openenergymonitor.org/. In general, it is easier to do this with an arduino as it has multiple A-D inputs and the output of the CT transformers is analog but it can feed the data to the RPi for easier data manipulation. An RPi would require an A-D converter to use by itself.

I have a CT sensor on my electrical feed to the hot-water tank but as the heater is driven with the two opposite phases, only a single CT sensor is needed. It still requires a burden resistance, rectification and filtering to be useful.

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Imperf3kt
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Re: Utility meter reading using raspberry pi

Thu Jul 05, 2018 9:44 pm

Modifying or tampering with your utility meters in any way can land you a massive fine in any country, including something as simple as putting rubbish in your meterbox.
Don't do it.
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PhatFil
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Re: Utility meter reading using raspberry pi

Fri Jul 06, 2018 1:16 am

where in the world are you?? do you have a smart meter? if so you may be able to hijack its home area network signal (2.4ghz zigbee mesh net?)
tho ive done little beyond google the subject.. ive avoided the complexity and cost of zigbee coms with my own home automation dabbles my home is small enough to fit within my wifi scope comfortably.

in the uk the terminology for a user owned device communicating on the meters home area network is a CAD Consumer Access Device, so there does appear to be some sort of open interface to third parties??
http://www.beama.org.uk/asset/EBA9BBB9- ... BC3EEEAB/

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thagrol
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Re: Utility meter reading using raspberry pi

Fri Jul 06, 2018 1:35 pm

Imperf3kt wrote:
Thu Jul 05, 2018 9:44 pm
Modifying or tampering with your utility meters in any way can land you a massive fine in any country, including something as simple as putting rubbish in your meterbox.
Don't do it.
Second that. Don't go messing with gas or mains electricity unless you have the apropriate training, qualifications, and certifications. You're in for a world of hurt if you get it wrong.

A hands off approach would be to point a camera at the meter and do image recognition and OCR to get the readings.
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PiGraham
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Re: Utility meter reading using raspberry pi

Fri Jul 06, 2018 1:56 pm

I agree with others' comments on not tampering with utilities. Reading the display on the meter is an option, but make sure to not obscure the display.

For Electricity you could fit a clip on meter. I bought a smart meter on eBay for a few pounds and that has a clip on sensor that talks to a display by radio. It doesn't affect the official meter and it doesn't require any direct contact with mains voltages.


This is what I got
https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/ONZO-Smart-E ... 0841462449

The remote display could help with a camera reader or you may be able to hck the radio comms to get at the metering data more directly. It won't be quite as acurate as the real meter because the clip on sensing only measures current and you need voltage and current to acurately measure power, but it's close enough for finding out what appliances use most power or tracking use over time.

maurice1
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Location: Dublin

Re: Utility meter reading using raspberry pi

Thu Jul 12, 2018 11:45 am

I just ordered one from ebay.

I note that there is more info from https://www.navitron.org.uk/forum/index ... 68.75.html
One of the guys there proves that it uses 433mhz and links to https://www.en4rab.co.uk/onzo/ which has some onzo downloads.
I think they are for windows not linux

I bought one of the efegy ones from Maplin £20 and I find it great as it has a phone app and shows historic usage just didnt get the display. So I will be using Onzo for display only.

I also use the Welsh company https://emoncms.org arduino shield £14 which I find successful and updates to their interface.

On another property I used Arduino+ethernet shield and 33ohm resistors +10 x Current Transformers www.tme.eu/en/details/az-1000/current-t ... rs/talema/. This also connects to the welsh lads and works fine for the last 6 months

To the best of my knowledge https://openenergymonitor.org/ have pi software

raspi_noob5
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Joined: Fri Jul 13, 2018 8:07 pm

Re: Utility meter reading using raspberry pi

Wed Aug 08, 2018 8:16 pm

I think the easiest way to do this is to use an software defined radio (SDR) and some opensource GO software to read electricity, water, and gas meters. Likely you'll be intercepting a lot more data than just your house/apartment, but you can filter to find which meter id you need.

This involves intercepting the 915 MHz AMR signal from the meters. Caveats here are that about half the country has upgraded to newer smart meters (especially for their electric needs). The new smart meters are on ZigBee signals and are encrypted.

Links:

https://hackaday.com/2017/12/21/read-ho ... h-rtl-sdr/

https://github.com/bemasher/rtlamr

raspi_noob5
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Joined: Fri Jul 13, 2018 8:07 pm

Re: Utility meter reading using raspberry pi

Wed Aug 08, 2018 8:22 pm

When I say half the country, I mean the US. Most of Europe already has smart meters installed...

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