Helios is a Japanese company coordinating the deployment of an updated gas utility solution for the KGDCL Gas Company in Bangladesh.
3 Ignition servers (master-backup pair at the primary site, and a failover server at a disaster recovery site)
3 MariaDB servers, in a layout that physically matches the Ignition servers
Galera replication, to facilitate synchronization of data between databases
At scale, will receive historical data from up to 600,000 meters
The HIT System is an Ignition-powered application designed to facilitate more accurate gas utilities monitoring in Bangladesh. It includes a CRM for managing customers as well as a data storage and analysis portion that runs against incoming gas usage statistics.
Consumers of natural gas in Bangladesh currently pay a fixed-rate fee each month, based on the number of gas-consuming appliances on the property (stove, water heater, etc.). It is estimated that the error in gas consumption could be as high as 50 percent.
Kymera was contracted by Helios to design and develop the software portion of the solution to change gas utilities monitoring in Bangladesh from flat-rate billing to a pre-paid system. Under the pre-paid system, customers visit a manned point of sale (POS) connected to the HIT System, bringing with them an NFC card paired with their gas meter. When they purchase gas at the POS, Kymera reads the latest information about the meter from the card (like the consumption history, any alarms from the meter), and charges the card with the new volume of gas. The customer can then return to their meter and add the volume of gas to the meter, which will run until the gas is consumed.
The HIT System consists of three key parts:
The CRM drives the organization of all account information. It facilitates the creation of new accounts, modifying existing accounts, and the viewing of the account histories. This represents the bulk of the application in terms of the user interface.
The Card Reader is a custom Ignition module Kymera developed that provides several scripting functions and callbacks for interacting with a Sony NFC card reader. It ultimately powers all communication between the HIT System and the meters.
The Analysis is driven partially by Ignition’s reporting software, and partially by Kymera’s library of analysis scripts. In addition to providing data in aggregate (such as a customer’s purchase history or their meter’s consumption history), the Analysis also drives the detection of anomalies in the customer data. It automatically searches for deviations in the customer’s purchase frequency and volume, detects leaks in the meter, and verifies that the customer’s purchased gas is consistent with the gas being consumed by their meter.
The solution provides a web API for interface by third-party payment providers, the gas company’s existing management system, and a mobile POS app developed by another project partner.
Kymera plans to make this a “drop-in” software solution, as it begins to distribute it to other regional gas companies in Bangladesh.