19 Sep 2011 Redwood Shores - Oracle Utilities Customer Care and Billing 2.3.1 running with Oracle Exadata Database Machine X2-2 processed an unprecedented 16,500 bills per minute or 993,240 bills per hour. In tests, a typical night's billing run for a utility with one million customers - 47,600 bills - was processed in 2.87 minutes.
The test used 12 months of historical financial data for a typical distribution company with one million accounts: 80 percent residential, 18 percent commercial, 2 percent industrial (interval billing).
As utilities plan new service options and programmes including smart grid, responding to emerging customer and community needs is a top priority. Internally, utilities need to deliver, for example, pre-paid utilities services, demand response and near-real-time access to customer data while maintaining bill throughput for timely revenue flow. Thus, a utility using a monthly billing cycle typically needs to plan for approximately 21 overnight billing runs per month, in addition to unanticipated delays.
The high rate of throughput was achievable primarily due to the increased input/output capacity in Exadata, which features highly tuned and balanced elements of computing, storage and networking that adapt and scale predictably. Oracle Utilities Customer Care and Billing on Exadata required fewer input/output operations - only 48.5 per bill on average, while a non-Exadata server typically required 73.7.
Test results indicate ample room for additional growth (scaling), as the Exadata quarter rack database server with two RAC nodes was utilized less than 55 percent at the benchmark level.
Testing was completed on a quarter rack Oracle Exadata Database Machine X2-2 running Oracle Database 11g and Oracle Real Application Clusters with Oracle Utilities Customer Care and Billing 2.3.1 on the application tier running on Oracle's Sun Fire X4770 server.
Built using industry standard hardware components, and intelligent database and storage software from Oracle, Oracle Exadata Database Machine powers the largest and most important OLTP and data warehousing applications up to 10x faster than before.
"This benchmark demonstrates that Oracle software and hardware systems - engineered to work together, and available today - can process routine customer bills in a fraction of the time traditionally used by most utilities. It is a first step toward demonstrating Oracle's superior ability to help utilities handle the smart grid's anticipated 'data deluge'", stated Linda Jackman, group vice president of product management, Oracle Utilities.