Sunday, 19 June 2011

Integrated Critical Communications Infrastructure for Smart Grid

Integrated Critical Communications Infrastructure for Smart Grid at Connectivity Week

On the 25th May 2011 at the Connectivity Week conference in Santa Clara, California USA , there was a very informative session and the main focus was on wireless networks to be used for Smart Grid Critical Communications.

“ Critical communications infrastructure that supports the likes of military , emergency services and law enforcement is protected to serve the public good and is not subject to everyday market focus.

Electricity is a strategic asset for all modern economics and adequate safeguards are needed to protect grid in much the same way.

One way of doing this is to allow utilities to share the dedicated spectrum and radio frequencies that support that support essential services.

The purpose of this session is to elucidate the rationale for utilities use of wireless to send and receive critical communications related to Smart Grid. “ [ Allan Weissberger ]

The key characteristics of the Critical Communications Infrastructure as highlighted by Kat Shoa from The Directive Group are :

    Supports military , emergency response and law enforcement
    Fundamental to public safety during emergencies
    Spans broad geographical areas
    QoS of utmost importance  Public vs. private networks  Security : physical security , data security  Integration / deployment timelines

Howard Liu , Network Architect , Southern California Edison (SCE)

His presentation shed light to what cutting edge utility has done to build and operate its own network.

His suggestions were :

               Utilities have to build their own integrated communications network for applications eg. Disaster recovery
                       They have to develop a road map for executing their network strategy
                       An integrating different sub-networks as a key issue

The other key points highlighted by Howard were :

SCEnet has been performing well for over 15 years SCE’s Unified Communications Architecture anticipates all enterprise communications needs

SCE’s Integrated Critical Communications Infrastructure has a vision of a Layered Communications Architecture

Utilities had to build their own Integrated Critical Infrastructure for Critical Applications

SCE will consider complementing that with a Telco company going forward

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