RLM & SLP Meters: Differences and Benefits of Electricity Meters


With electricity meters, a general distinction is made between SLP and RLM meters. What do the two abbreviations mean and what are the respective advantages of the meter types?

What does SLP mean?

The abbreviation SLP means standard load profile. The so-called standard load profile method is used to determine the expected electricity requirements of smaller consumers.

SLP counter

Source: Areva

With this statistical-mathematical process, the time course of the power consumption (or the performance of the consumer) is mapped. Smaller consumers are, for example, households, small supermarkets or travel agencies.

Standard load profiles are necessary about temporal and temperature-dependent fluctuations to track electricity consumption. This is to ensure that consumers with an SLP meter can always be provided with sufficient power as required.

SLP Counter - Standard Load Profile

Source: Wikipedia

Different groups of consumers are distinguished, which makes it easier to allocate systems to different profiles (commercial, bakery, household, etc.). For example, it is clear to the network operator that more electricity has to be provided on a Sunday afternoon than on a Wednesday afternoon (see graphic).

SLP counters can mostly not read remotely In systems with SLP meters, electricity consumption is billed via deductions based on the forecast consumption volume (i.e. based on estimated values) using the assigned profile. A consumer only receives an invoice at the end of the year based on the real consumption and performance values.

What are RLM counters?

RLM stands for Registered Performance Measurement. Since points of consumption with an annual consumption of more than 100,000 kWh are obliged by law to record power measurement, RLM meters have to meet different requirements than SLP meters. They serve, for example, to ensure grid stability.

RLM counter

Source: Areva

The special thing about RLM counters is that the counters

  1. measure the respective average power for each quarter of an hour and
  2. can be read remotely. In other words, the RLM counters can also be read remotely by the network operator via mobile communications, the Internet or the power grid.

The recorded average power values ​​enable the grid operator to individual load profile per customer to determine. The electricity provider receives the data monthly from the network operator and, in contrast to the SLP method of measurement, can access correct and measured values ​​and issue correspondingly “sharp” monthly bills.

What are the advantages of an RLM counter?

What is advantageous for the network operator can also be worthwhile for the customer: since the switch from SLP to RLM entails higher costs for meter and metering point operation, it can, however, conversely reduce network charges. Further optimizations may be possible in this context.

RLM or SLP in brief: Which electricity meter is suitable for whom?

In general it can be said that SLP meters are used for smaller points of consumption. RLM meters, on the other hand, are more for bulk consumers such as companies.

  • Points of consumption, their annual consumption below 100,000 kWh are usually equipped with an SLP counter. This is particularly the case for household customers
  • Points of consumption, their annual electricity consumption over 100,000kWh are required by law to have an RLM meter in accordance with the German Electricity Grid Access Ordinance (StromNZV).

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The value of 100,000 kWh is not set in stone. On request, consumers with, for example, 70,000 kWh annual consumption can also have an RLM meter installed. The specified kWh limit according to the StromNZV is therefore flexible. If the consumer wishes to use a different type of meter, the network operator must take care of this.

SLP and RLM meters: Differences in how electricity meters are billed

An important difference between the two types of electricity meter lies in the possibility of billing. While consumers who have an SLP meter installed, as a rule only once a year consumers with an RLM meter usually receive an electricity bill monthly A settlement.

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