Patents Assigned to Itron, Inc.
  • Patent number: 12002342
    Abstract: Techniques for detecting a high gas pressure situation within a gas delivery system (e.g., for natural gas delivery to homes and businesses) are described. In one example, a device measures gas pressure. If a pressure over a threshold value is detected, a nearby device is messaged. The nearby device either confirms the over-pressure condition or indicates it may be more localized. If the condition is present within an area of the gas delivery system and/or within a group of devices within the gas delivery system, protective measures may be taken, such as closing valves providing gas to a number of service sites.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 7, 2022
    Date of Patent: June 4, 2024
    Assignee: Itron, Inc.
    Inventors: James Lee Kann, Janet Penz, Katrina Polk
  • Patent number: 11982373
    Abstract: Device(s) and techniques determine if a gas regulator supplying gas at a regulated pressure to a gas meter (e.g., the gas meter of a house or business) within a gas distribution system has one or more lock-up failure events or venting events, wherein gas is vented to the atmosphere. In an example, a sensor obtains information indicating a relative position of a stop stem of a gas regulator and a diaphragm pin of the gas regulator. As pressure increases within the regulator, the diaphragm pin moves toward and/or touches the stop stem. The gas pressure increase may result from debris in the regulator that prevents a valve from fully closing. A signal may be sent from the regulator and/or associated gas meter. The signal may contain information based at least in part on data from the sensor, and which may indicate a lock-up failure event or a venting event by the gas regulator.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 18, 2020
    Date of Patent: May 14, 2024
    Assignee: ITRON, INC.
    Inventors: James Lee Kann, Mark K. Cornwall
  • Publication number: 20240155348
    Abstract: A metrology device may include a processor and a non-transitory computer-readable media storing instructions that, when executed by the processor, cause the processor to perform operations. The operations may include generating a challenge message, the challenge message including a challenge; issuing the challenge message in a scannable undirected advertising message; receiving from the field tool a response solution to the challenge message, the response solution being calculated based at least in part on the challenge and a challenge key associated with the challenge, and verifying the response solution based at least in part on a secure hash algorithm (SHA). The challenge key may include a fixed value specific to a manufacturer of the metrology device and known to the field tool and the metrology device.
    Type: Application
    Filed: December 4, 2023
    Publication date: May 9, 2024
    Applicant: Itron, Inc.
    Inventors: ISAIAH MICHAEL WEBER, BRET GREGORY HOLMDAHL
  • Patent number: 11971291
    Abstract: Techniques for using data indicating if a gas regulator supplying gas at a regulated pressure to a gas meter (e.g., the gas meter of a house or business) within a gas distribution system has one or more lock-up failure events or venting events, wherein gas is vented to the atmosphere. The data may identify the identity of gas regulators at which the lock-up failure events or venting events occurred. Based at least in part on the identified gas regulators, a number of gas regulators having at least one of lock-up failure events or venting events that are connected to a same gas supply line may be identified. If the number of gas regulators having at least one of lock-up failure events or venting events on the identified gas supply line exceeds a threshold number this may indicate the presence of debris in the gas supply. Remedial steps may be taken, and the situation may be monitored and reassessed.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 18, 2020
    Date of Patent: April 30, 2024
    Assignee: ITRON, INC.
    Inventors: Mark K. Cornwall, James Lee Kann, Peter Clevenger
  • Patent number: 11971285
    Abstract: Techniques detect a low gas-pressure condition within a region without the use of pressure sensors. In an example, gas usage at a service site is disaggregated to show use by individual appliances. A flowrate of gas at an appliance (e.g., a gas hot water tank) having a generally fixed-rate of gas-consumption is determined. Based at least in part on the flowrate of gas at the appliance, and an historical gas flowrate at that appliance, it is determined if gas pressure at the service site is lower than expected. In an example, failure of the appliance to use its typical fixed-flowrate may indicate low gas pressure at the service site. Information is obtained from a second gas meter at a second service site. Based on the gas pressure at the first and second service sites being lower than expected, a low gas pressure situation may exist in a regional area.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 18, 2020
    Date of Patent: April 30, 2024
    Assignee: Itron, Inc.
    Inventors: Mark K. Cornwall, James Lee Kann, Peter Clevenger
  • Patent number: 11973831
    Abstract: Techniques determine if an appliance having a fixed-rate of gas-consumption is degrading over time. In one example, a flowrate of gas at a service site is obtained. The flowrate of gas is disaggregated to obtain a flowrate of gas corresponding to an appliance having a generally fixed-rate of gas-consumption. The flowrate of gas of the appliance is compared to historical gas consumption by the appliance. Based at least in part on the comparing, it may be determined that performance of the appliance has changed over time. For example, the gas consumption of a hot water tank may increase due to mineral build-up in the bottom of the tank. Responsive to the determined degradation of the appliance, warnings may be sent, repairs may be made, and/or appliance(s) may be replaced.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: February 27, 2023
    Date of Patent: April 30, 2024
    Assignee: ITRON, INC.
    Inventors: Mark K. Cornwall, James Lee Kann, Peter Clevenger
  • Patent number: 11968252
    Abstract: Various embodiments disclose a method performed by a first node device in a mesh network that includes identifying a plurality of neighbor node devices that have one or more blocks of a dataset; determining quality scores for respective node devices of the plurality of neighbor node devices; selecting, based on the quality scores, a second node device from the plurality of neighbor node devices; and sending, to the second node device, a first request to receive at least one block of the one or more blocks.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: January 6, 2023
    Date of Patent: April 23, 2024
    Assignee: ITRON, INC.
    Inventors: Imad Jamil, Jerome Bartier, Fabrice Monier, Samuel De Vals
  • Patent number: 11965320
    Abstract: Techniques for controlling water pressure at a plurality of water customer service sites are described. In an example, a first plurality of water service sites having water pressure values greater than a first threshold value are identified. A second plurality of water service sites having pressure values less than a second threshold value are identified. Valves controlling water flow to respective customer service sites within the first and second pluralities of water service sites are adjusted. The adjustments increase water pressure in the second plurality of water service sites to a pressure above a minimal target pressure. The adjustment maintains the water pressure of the first plurality of service sites above the minimal target pressure. In an example, groups of water service sites are associated with respective water mains and/or water pressure sensors. Information shared between groups may assist in adjusting water valves within the water system.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 22, 2021
    Date of Patent: April 23, 2024
    Assignee: ITRON, INC.
    Inventor: James Lee Kann
  • Patent number: 11950324
    Abstract: Techniques for multi-data rate communications include receiving, by a first node device within a mesh network, an information element that specifies one or more communication modes supported by a second node device within the mesh network; selecting, by the first node device, a first communication mode from the one or more communication modes, wherein a first metric value determined for the first communication mode based on the information element is lower than a second metric value determined for a default communication mode by a threshold value; and configuring, by the first node device, a communication link between the first node device and the second node device according to the first communication mode.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: April 12, 2022
    Date of Patent: April 2, 2024
    Assignee: ITRON, INC.
    Inventor: Donald Eugene Sturek
  • Patent number: 11924879
    Abstract: Techniques for managing multi-mode communications between nodes in a network include initiating, by a first node in a mesh network, a carrier sense multiple access with collision avoidance (CSMA/CA) session while the first node is in a first mode. The CSMA/CA session is associated with a request to transmit a data message to a second node in the mesh network. Initiating the CSMA/CA session includes determining availability of a channel associated with a channel schedule of the second node associated with the first mode.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 4, 2022
    Date of Patent: March 5, 2024
    Assignee: ITRON, INC.
    Inventors: Khalid Maallem, Yacine Khaled, Jérôme Bartier
  • Patent number: 11924077
    Abstract: One embodiment of the present invention sets forth a technique for evaluating connections between nodes in a mesh network.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 13, 2021
    Date of Patent: March 5, 2024
    Assignee: ITRON, INC.
    Inventors: Thomas F. Uhling, Keith Wayne Barnes
  • Patent number: 11917546
    Abstract: Techniques for preserving battery life in poor signal conditions include an electronic device determining a coverage enhancement (CE) parameter associated with a link between the electronic device and a base station for a first point in time; determining, based on the CE parameter, that a signaling metric associated with the link for the first point in time is equal to or below a corresponding threshold; and in response to determining that the signaling metric is equal to or below the corresponding threshold, delaying transmission of one or more messages from the electronic device over the link until a second point in time that is later than the first point in time.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 20, 2022
    Date of Patent: February 27, 2024
    Assignee: ITRON, INC.
    Inventors: Robert Vernon Dusenberry, Richard Donald Maes, II
  • Patent number: 11906330
    Abstract: Techniques for efficient compression of sensor data are described herein. In an example, metrology data is received from a metrology device, the metrology data comprising one or more of: voltage (V) data; current (A) data; resistive power (W) data; and volt-amps reactive power (VAR) data. The metrology data is processed, wherein the processing comprises: performing peak-detection on the metrology data, to create data-signals comprising: a timestamped peak-values data-signal; and a peak-removed data-signal. Median-filtering is performed on the peak-removed data-signal, wherein a median-filtered data-signal is created. Level-shift detection is performed on the median-filtered data-signal, wherein a timestamped level-shift data-signal is created. The data is sent to a server. The data may include the timestamped peak-values data-signal and the timestamped level-shift data-signal.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: August 17, 2022
    Date of Patent: February 20, 2024
    Assignee: Itron, Inc.
    Inventor: Gokulmuthu Narayanaswamy
  • Patent number: 11902956
    Abstract: One embodiment of the present invention sets forth a technique for performing time synchronization within a network. The technique includes detecting a first scheduling conflict between a first transmission time associated with a first periodic beacon from a first node in the network and a second transmission time associated with a second periodic beacon from a second node in the network. The technique also includes determining a first alternate transmission time associated with the first periodic beacon based on a position of the first node in the network and the first transmission time. The technique further includes transmitting the first periodic beacon at the first transmission time, and transmitting an alternate periodic beacon at the first alternate transmission time.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 20, 2021
    Date of Patent: February 13, 2024
    Assignee: ITRON, INC.
    Inventors: Thomas F. Uhling, Keith Wayne Barnes, Howard Neal Brace, Imad Jamil
  • Patent number: 11899068
    Abstract: Disclosed are techniques to conserve battery of an endpoint device. Example techniques include adjusting the size of messages transmitted by an endpoint device and/or adjusting the transmission rate of an endpoint device. In some configurations, the one or more criteria are used by an endpoint device to determine what data fields to include within a message and/or adjust a transmission rate associated with the transmission of messages by the endpoint device. For instance, the one or more criteria may include the battery level of the device, the time of year, whether the data has already been transmitted by the endpoint device, whether the data has been acknowledged as received by another device, whether the endpoint device has been instructed by another device to reduce the message size and/or adjust the transmission rate, and the like.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 7, 2022
    Date of Patent: February 13, 2024
    Assignee: Itron, Inc.
    Inventors: Mark K Cornwall, James Lee Kann
  • Patent number: 11898883
    Abstract: Techniques for obtaining and processing utility consumption data (e.g., gas, water, electricity, etc.) of a utility network to determine if a violation has occurred with respect to a restriction schedule associated with a service site. By way of example, a number of utility restriction schedules associated with a number of service sites may be generated that indicate, for example, a type of restricted activity and/or event (e.g., irrigation), seasons and/or which days activity is allowed or not allowed, duration activity is allowed, and/or mitigation to take place if a violation is detected. A device (e.g., a smart utility meter, a router, etc.) may monitor utility consumption and detect a particular usage activity (e.g., irrigation) via data disaggregation. The device may compare the activity to the restriction schedule for that particular service site and perform automatic mitigation if a violation is detected.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 2, 2022
    Date of Patent: February 13, 2024
    Assignee: ITRON, INC.
    Inventor: James Lee Kann
  • Patent number: 11888748
    Abstract: Techniques are directed to controlling access to resources on a message bus of a network communication device. The techniques may include, by the network communication device, processing a message bus access policy file uniquely corresponding to a process. The message bus access policy file may include a certificate securely associating the message bus access policy file with the process. The techniques may further include, by the network communication device, based at least in part on the processing the message bus access policy file, exposing one or more resources of the network communication device to the process on the message bus, in a manner corresponding to at least one resource access permission indication contained within the message bus access policy file.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: December 30, 2022
    Date of Patent: January 30, 2024
    Assignee: ITRON, INC.
    Inventors: Scott Dale Brown, Andrew Keats, Matthew Rockey, Jason Estes
  • Patent number: 11882201
    Abstract: Techniques for data compression for efficient network management are described herein. In one example, for each byte of input data, either: (1) a value of that byte is added to a first-instance array if the value of that byte has not yet been seen in the input data; or (2) an index value is added to an index array, wherein the index value points to the appropriate location in the first-instance array. An “address-bit array” is created with one bit for each byte of the input data. Each bit in the address-bit array indicates whether information of a corresponding byte of the input data was put into the first-instance array or the index array. When the input data file is smaller, the index values in the index array tend to be mostly small valued bytes. Accordingly, the number of zero-valued most significant bits (MSBs) present in all bytes may be stripped from the index array, thereby compressing the input data.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: March 30, 2022
    Date of Patent: January 23, 2024
    Assignee: ITRON, INC.
    Inventor: Sunilkumar jagdishbhai Prajapati
  • Patent number: 11880380
    Abstract: Techniques for contextualizing utility visualization patterns in a utility infrastructure environment are described herein. A utility meter data dashboard associated with a type of event may be displayed. A selection of a portion of a first utility visualization displayed in the utility meter data dashboard is received, the portion being associated with a subset of utility data. One or more previously used utility visualizations may be determined from among a plurality of additional utility visualizations. One or more candidate utility visualizations associated with the type of event may be determined from among the previously used utility visualizations. A ranked list of one or more candidate utility visualizations may be displayed. A second utility visualization may be displayed based at least in part on a selection from the ranked list.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: September 20, 2022
    Date of Patent: January 23, 2024
    Assignee: ITRON, INC.
    Inventor: Curtis Christman
  • Patent number: 11882599
    Abstract: One embodiment of the present invention sets forth a technique for performing time synchronization within a network. The technique includes detecting a first scheduling conflict between a first transmission time associated with a first periodic beacon from a first node in the network and a first listening window associated with receiving a second periodic beacon from a second node in the network. The technique also includes determining a first alternate transmission time for the second periodic beacon based on a second transmission time associated with the second periodic beacon and a position of the second node in the network and calculating a second listening window associated with transmission of the second periodic beacon from the second node at the first alternate transmission time. The technique further includes listening for the second periodic beacon during the second listening window.
    Type: Grant
    Filed: May 20, 2021
    Date of Patent: January 23, 2024
    Assignee: ITRON, INC.
    Inventors: Thomas F. Uhling, Keith Wayne Barnes, Howard Neal Brace, Imad Jamil