Non-Contact Encoder utilizes optical character recognition.

Press Release Summary:

Housed in bronze or polymer housing, absolute encoder register reads water meter's odometer digits. Powered by interrogation equipment, InVISION reading technology incorporates strategically placed LEDs to illuminate meter register's odometer digits. Multiple retinas focus through lenses onto odometer digits for absolute meter reading. Error-free readings pass to hand-held or AMR device. Installation is accomplished via quick-connect, screwless design.

Original Press Release:

ABB Water Meters Launches Absolute Encoder with InVISION(TM) Technology for Near-Perfect Meter Reading

Non-contact Encoder Utilizes Optical Character Recognition

Ocala, Florida, September 29, 2002 - At the 2002 Automatic Meter Reading Association Symposium, ABB Water Meters today launched InVISION(TM) technology in its new non-contact absolute encoder register, utilizing optical character recognition (OCR) to read a water meter's odometer digits. Developed by ABB Water Meters with ABB's Corporate Research scientists, ABB Water Meters introduces the first absolute encoder to mimic readings taken with the human eye. ABB Water Meters' absolute encoders with InVISION technology will be available for C700 positive displacement meters in November 2002.

Powered by interrogation equipment, InVISION reading technology incorporates strategically positioned light emitting diodes that illuminate the meter register's odometer digits for vision. Multiple retinas focus through lenses onto the odometer digits for an absolute meter reading. Virtually 100% error-free readings are passed to the hand-held or AMR device.

"We're very excited about expanding OCR technology to meter reading. Our engineers were driven to develop the perfect encoder, one that would interface to all current and future reading technologies, would extend register life and be compatible with all metering principles," commented Joakim Weidemanis, ABB Water Meters President. "This technology revolutionizes encoder design and offers unequalled benefits to water utilities."

Incorporating customer feedback, the new encoder design simplifies installation by replacing clumsy screw connectors with a quick-connect, screwless design.

While improving functionality, ABB Water Meters' engineers were challenged to retain all of the benefits of its current absolute encoder, which has successfully served utilities for over fifteen years. For both indoor and pit settings, ABB Water Meters has retained its encoder register's permanent seal with a glass lens, rubber gasket and copper can. The InVISION absolute encoder's low flow/leak detector retains its high sensitivity by a 1:1 ratio with the meter's magnetic drive. The encoder register's odometer digits are the same height as in previous designs. The register's thin sweep hand still allows clear sighting of odometer digits, and the test circle at the register's circumference has been made more distinct to simplify testing.

ABB Water Meters' InVISION encoder is housed in a streamlined bronze or polymer housing introduced in August for direct read meters, and is backward compatible with all 3-lug design waterworks and low lead bronze C700 meters. A redesigned adapter ring that mates to the C700 body locking lugs secures the new register and housing.

ABB Water Meters is the world's leading water meter supplier, producing over 8 million water meters each year. Ruhrgas Industries (RGI) has reached an agreement with ABB to acquire ABB's global water and electricity metering division to create a new global leader in utility metering. The acquisition is expected to be completed in the 4th quarter this year, following customary regulatory approvals, joining a world leader in water and electricity metering with $480 million in revenues and 3,900 employees in 50 countries with RGI's gas meter manufacturing unit to form the largest utility metering company in the US and the world with global metering revenues of over $1 billion.

Additional information on ABB Water Meters' absolute encoders with InVISION technology can be found at [select Water Metering, North America, InVISION] or by contacting the Customer Service Team, P.O. Box 1852, Ocala FL, 34478. In the U.S. Outside Florida, please call 800-874-0890 or inside Florida 800-356-6829. In Canada please phone 800-263-9110, in the Caribbean 787-872-2006 or in Mexico 525-55-203-8002.

InVISION is a trademark of ABB Water Meters.

For more information, please contact:
Diane Palmer
Marketing Manager
321-409-8352 phone
321-409-8353 fax

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