Electric utilities of all sizes can benefit from the cost savings, efficiency, and safety gains enabled by smart devices for remote, real-time grid management. But these new grid devices are only as “smart” as the communications network they run on—and the most intelligent network for the job is Rajant Kinetic Mesh®.
Smart devices place new strains on existing utility networks. In constant bi-directional communication with the operations center, they demand high throughput that even newer SCADA communications systems still running on low speed, low-capacity telephone circuits cannot provide. Utilities also have little control over these leased lines, and any operating benefits of applications like automated metering and remote substation monitoring can be quickly negated by long network outages—even resulting in regulatory fines when lack of network reliability impacts the ability to continuously deliver and rapidly restore power.
To truly modernise their power grid, utility companies need a smarter network solution, engineered from the ground up to support their demanding uptime requirements and the exponential growth of smart grid devices with resilient, flexible, high performing functionality.
These compact, lightweight nodes are built to operate in harsh outdoor environments and can be easily affixed to static or moving equipment. Each BreadCrumb can hold multiple connections over multiple frequencies simultaneously, and work peer-to-peer to form a Kinetic Mesh network with hundreds of potential paths over which to direct traffic.
If new BreadCrumbs are added after initial configuration, they automatically begin communicating with other nodes in the area, making the network seamless and scalable. That means with one platform, Rajant can provide support for the wide-reaching coverage required by investor-owned utilities (IOUs), the focused communications requirements of specialist utility groups, and the urban and rural connectivity needs of municipal utilities and cooperatives in between.
InstaMesh works intelligently to select the fastest path or paths among the BreadCrumbs for delivery at multi-Mbps speeds. If a path becomes unavailable or blocked—from storm conditions for example—InstaMesh will dynamically route communications via the next-best available path to ensure they reach their destination in real time.
Because InstaMesh always has multiple paths and frequencies to leverage, utilities gain the high capacity they need to communicate with their multitude of deployed smart devices. And, because all BreadCrumbs can be mobile, this high-performance, ultra-reliable coverage can be easily extended to bucket trucks and other work vehicles to support the connectivity requirements of field personnel…
Click here to continue reading this article from Rajant.