I've walked our dog in the blocks around Southeastern Sioux Falls for years. For some reason, for the first time, I looked up and noticed a large metallic box with antennas hanging from the top of a light pole.

Have you seen one of these hanging in your neighborhood? There was a phone number on the side that read “Call 1-800-597-2809 if this unit is damaged or prior to removal”. So I called the number. Why wouldn't cha?

A nice recorded voice said, “Thank you for calling Landis & Gyr Technology, Roseville (Minnesota) where we help the world manage technology better.”

Get our free mobile app

It turns out that those grey metal boxes with antennas are part of a “Smart Grid”. They collect data from smart utility meter systems on area homes via radio signals. They transfer your home's electric power usage data.

A smart meter is like a conventional power meter in that it also measures your electric power usage, but it has other capabilities, such as the ability to be read remotely without sending a person out to your meter.

According to arrl.org the modernization of the electric power grid, often called the "smart grid" by its proponents, is an important goal. Efforts such as the Advanced Metering Infrastructure, Automated Meter Reading, and the other phases of intelligent grid management are all part of a smarter grid.

Apparently, there are smart meters that have been deployed all over the United States and in many other countries.

Falls Park Pics Show Very Dry Drought Conditions In Sioux Falls