- Behind The Scenes
(STARKVILLE, Miss.) (WCBI) -Starkville Electric Department crews have started work on what could one day turn the city into a hi-tech information highway within itself.
The city is installing fiber optic lines that will be the foundation for new automated electric and water meter reading system.
But one day, those same lines could mean everything from wi-fi service for all citizens to new opportunities for business.
Traveling at two miles per hour, Starkville electric department workers kicked off phase one of a sophisticated communications system within the city.
It's first use will make the city more efficient.
But eventually it could mean much more.
"With this communications we won't have to get into a truck and drive out to each resource and gather data that way. The data gathering will be streamlined, be much faster. It will be real time. And allow us to make decisions to minimize losses on the system," said Tommy Sullivan, Engeneering Operations, SED.
"But this really becomes the back bone of our communications network that'll allow us to tie our substation together, provide reliability. But it also creates a back hall option as we go into our automatic meter reading," said Terry Kemp, SED GM.
That meter reading project is expected to start later this year.
Making things more efficient, timely, and be able to collect more data.
"The other good thing as we go into our automatic meter reading arena, it really provides a better customer interface, so that the customer themselves can be more aware of their usage patterns when it's used. And then those cost implications," said Kemp.
The fiber optic cable might be traveling at a slow pace but as these workers prepare to take the city into a higher tech status, all citizens will be applauding better communications throughout the city.
"And also it provides a good platform with the fiber itself because we'll have good capacity and it creates opportunity to carry a lot of data for other departments inside the city that we can work together on to even again improve the overall service to the city," added Kemp.
In addition to regular customer, businesses, and hospitals will also benefit from these fiber optic connections.