Telecommunications: by xld14276


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									Main feature                 chapter II Ahead of our time

                                                  the network’s nervous system
                                                  Telecommunications infrastructure
                                                  is the nervous system of power delivery systems
                                                  today. But utilities’ requirements cannot be met
                                                  by business-driven mainstream operators,
           A control room where cutting-edge
           dedicated telecommunications systems   who do not have the industry-specific know-how
           assure reliable power delivery.
                                                  for a market they deem, in any case, too small.

24   Think T&D///Winter 2009-2010
chapter II

                                                                                                         >    MORE

                                                            Power system fault protection is the tra-
                                                            ditional VIP passenger of a dedicated
                                                            telecommunications network with the
                                                            most stringent performance require-
                                                            ments. To clear a network fault within
                                                            80 to 100 ms, the communications
                                                            channel must propagate in just 5 to 10 ms.
                                                            Moreover, the network’s availability and
                                                            integrity requirements are well beyond a
                                                            mainstream telecom service—and are
                                                            growing more demanding as differential
                                                            protection and network-wide integrity
                                                            schemes are used for more selective,                                 > Mehrdad Mesbah
                                                            precise, faster fault clearance. Inade-
                                                            quate communications can have drastic        areVa t&d’s adVanced telecoM
                                                            consequences.                                PortFolio

                                                            Energy management                            Mehrdad Mesbah explains: “AREVA T&D
                                                                                                         offers a portfolio of dedicated building
                                                            Energy management systems and their          blocks to meet the telecom needs of the
                                                            associated SCADA need not only more          power delivery system through in-house
                                                            and more bandwidth, but high resilience      R&D and external partnerships:
                                                            and flexibility. Many utilities currently    • MiCOM T390 Power Line Carrier terminal
                                                            implement backup control centers that          connects HV substations and provides
                                                            are geographically remote from the main        all required services, including LAN
                                                            control facility. Transferring substation      interconnections. It also provides
                                                            connections between control centers in the     backup connections for critical
                                                            event of a major incident—or as part of        substation applications (e.g., protection
                                                            normal operation—makes further demands         relays, SCADA). Advanced facilities for
                                                            on the communications network.                 remote supervision are among the
                                                                                                           T390’s differentiating features;
                                                            Wide area monitoring & PMU                   • DIP5000 teleprotection signaling
             A visitor to any power system installation                                                    equipment uses advanced signal
             is hardly ever attracted to the underlying     Deregulation has split the power delivery      processing and detection algorithms to
             telecom infrastructure, and there was a        system into complementary or competing         enable secure, reliable, high-speed
             time when power system communica-              entities, while growing numbers of spe-        transfers of protection commands across
             tions were no more than, say, a SCADA          cific ICT (Information and Communica-          digital, optical and analog communications
             (Supervisory Control and Data Acquisi-         tion Technologies) applications are being      channels in the HV substation;
             tion) or a substation subsystem. In today’s    dispersed across power networks. It has      • DXC5000 and eDXC substation access
             T&D environment, it has become a con-          become critical to have a comprehensive        platforms provide interfacing facilities
             solidated activity as utilities increasingly   view of the system’s status in real time       for all legacy and modern substation
             invest in their own dedicated telecom-         to ensure constant situation awareness         device communications requirements
             munications infrastructure. Secure, relia-     and power system stability. A key capa-        (protection relays, SCADA, voice,
             ble communications lie at the core of          bility in this respect is a whole spectrum     Ethernet data, etc.);
             today’s power delivery systems. Says           of “wide-area applications” using time-      • NMS5000 Network Management System
             Mehrdad Mesbah, AREVA T&D Senior               synchronized measurements across               provides a fault supervision platform for
             Expert, Telecom Solution Marketing,            the network. These applications rely           the entire portfolio and enables additional
             “Communications is the cloud you see in        on telecommunications to enable                existing equipment and facilities to be
             the middle of different power system           time-sensitive information exchange            connected. NMS5000 identifies and
             process and system diagrams. It enables        between substations, substations and           diagnoses network-wide faults and
             everything to work with everything else        control platforms, and control centers         impacted communications services.”

             across the entire power network.”              and generating plants.

                                                                                                                         Think T&D///Winter 2009-2010    25
Main feature                 chapter II Ahead of our time

                                                 breaker operating information, for              Constraints beyond telecom operator
                                                 example, indicates the state of the net-        capabilities
                                                 work, while providing figures useful for
                                                 substation primary asset management.            Be it for safety, security, situation
                                                     This telecommunications-enabled             awareness, the environment or asset
                                                 flow of information across the network          management, telecom infrastructure is
                                    DXC 5000     enhances the operation and mainte-              hugely important in meeting special
                                      Access     nance of the power system and enables           power industry requirements. But the
                                    Platform.    it to function close to its operating limits.   business goals of market-driven tele-
                                                                                                 communications operators preclude
                                                 Security and knowledge                          sustained interest in utilities with their
                                                 management                                      market-unrepresentative needs.
                                                                                                 Indeed, utilities can be of only mar-
                                                 In recent years, mounting concerns over         ginal business interest to them. Recent
                                                 the security of national critical infrastruc-   U.K. figures show that time-sensitive
                                                 ture like power grids have led many utili-      critical communications of utilities,
                                                 ties to implement extensive remote video        when transported over public networks,
                                                 surveillance of their installations. The        account for a mere 0.02 percent of the
                                                 sheer amount of data traffic generated is       telecom operator market. Says Mesbah:
                                                 prompting major telecom network reha-           “Imagine a carrier actually willing to
                                                 bilitation, as is the deployment of remote      provide the service for power system
                                                 early-warning environmental monitoring.         applications with their long life expect-
      MiCOM T390                                    Another—intangible—asset is know-            ancy and high deployment costs. Who’s
      Power Line
      Carrier.                                   ledge. Experienced engineers are                to say if that carrier will still be around
                                                 repositories of knowledge and exper-            with the same policy 10-15 years on?”
                                                 tise. But as they age and retire, their         More importantly, operators simply can-
     Substation asset monitoring                 knowledge retires with them. Those still        not meet the increasingly stringent
                                                 working need to be strategically                telecom performance requirements of
     The pressures of cost-effectiveness and     employed (e.g., at national rather than         the T&D environment today. Dedicated
     regulations are compelling arguments        regional level) so that their understand-       systems can.
     for further enhancing installation relia-   ing and proposed solutions can be used
     bility. Remote condition monitoring of      across the grid by less experienced co-         A topology mapped over the power
     power system assets has a key role to       workers. Similarly, maintenance staff           network
     play. “Increasingly, substation primary     can access information on line wherever
     assets like circuit breakers and power      they work, instead of perusing on-site          It is precisely to fulfill such requirements
     transformers integrate dedicated con-       manuals. “With telecommunications,              that the topology of a dedicated commu-
     dition-monitoring electronics and so        the information goes to the user, not the       nications network matches that of the
     generate lots of data,” says Mesbah.        other way round,” comments Mesbah.              power delivery system. Particularly critical
     “Communications allow continuous
     transfer of the data to a central asset
     management facility, which in turn ena-
     bles optimized, timely maintenance and                                                        >      MORE
     can also produce health records for the
     regulator.”                                                                                 Questions to J.M. cornille, autoMation
        Indeed, all control platforms across                                                     business unit executiVe VP
     the network must be able to retrieve
     information captured in substations,                                                        Why is AREVA T&D involved in telecommunications?
     e.g., network status and power flow                                                         Automation solutions depend on reliable and
     information for energy management                                                           secure networks connecting substations, network
     platforms, or protection relay settings                                                     control centers and equipment. Protection,
     information for protection engineering                                                      control systems and network management
     workstations. It is also often very                                                         applications need to exchange mission-critical
     important to multicast the same infor-                                                      data to operate. The volume at stake is not huge;
                                                                      > Jean-Michel Cornille
     mation to different platforms. Circuit-

26   Think T&D///Winter 2009-2010
chapter II

                                                         Monitoring, Control and Supervision Platforms

                                                                        Power System
                                                                     Operational Telecoms
                         Dedicated                                                                                                 Dedicated
                         equipment                                                                                                architecture

                                                                   Power Process Installations

             however, it does demand specific solutions to     AREVA T&D maintains a dedicated portfolio and     strategic because they ensure secure, reliable
             enable the necessary reaction times. AREVA T&D    boasts powerful expertise in telecommunications   and fast communications between power
             has the expertise to deliver state-of-the-art     solutions for power system applications.          assets, substations and network operation
             telecom network solutions compliant with the      We adapt telecom technologies and                 applications for secure and stable power grid
             latest standards and practices, operating under   architectures to the performance requirements     operations; for renewable integration at large;
             power-grade KPIs, for turnkey substation and      and environmental constraints of power            for wide area energy efficiency control and
             network management projects as well as for        systems, and we build innovative solutions        monitoring; and for global market efficiency,
             dedicated stand-alone networks.                   when needed.                                      with active roles for all participants from
                                                                                                                 generation to consumers. Furthermore, power
             How can AREVA T&D compete against                 How do trends in T&D impact power system          industry–specific telecommunications are
             mainstream telecom providers?                     telecommunications?                               becoming even more critical as the volume
             They are more our suppliers than competitors.     Telecom networks will become even more            and variety of data exchanged increases.

                                                                                                                                    Think T&D///Winter 2009-2010   27
Main feature                 chapter II Ahead of our time

     is that adjacent substations should                 Says Mesbah: “Dedicated telecom-          some equipment, such as that for com-
     connect directly without intermediate            munications infrastructure, like that        municating over high voltage power
     switching nodes so as to meet time and           AREVA T&D implements, is able to             lines. The rest we procure and adapt,”
     availability constraints (e.g., for protection   survive eight, 12 or 24 hours, or even       explains Mesbah. “We benchmark on
     relaying) and provide entirely separate          longer, during a power outage.”              the mainstream market, find partners,
     routes between network access nodes to              Another important issue is techno-        test equipment, then use it as building
     ensure the fault tolerance necessary for         logy service lifetime and legacy inter-      blocks in dedicated solutions.”
     SCADA traffic. A standard telecom pro-           facing. Power utilities worldwide have          The AREVA T&D telecommunica-
     vider’s network, matched to its subscriber       hardware that may be more than               tions team brings further added value
     and traffic flow, cannot do this.                30 years old, and network deployment         in its comprehensive understanding of
        Similarly, a telecommunications infra-        cannot be done overnight. On the other       applications and constraints. One such
     structure must provide power independ-           hand, telecom technology change is           constraint is the harsh electromagnetic
     ence through adequately dimensioned              volatile and high-speed. “You’re con-        environment in which power grid
     backup batteries and generators. Yet,            stantly looking for solutions to integrate   equipment must operate. The team
     significantly, not all operators are willing     new technology into a legacy system          reinforces equipment protection and
     to do so, as illustrated by the aftermath        which is in a permanent state of migra-      makes sure it can be installed in such a
     of Hurricane Katrina that wreaked havoc          tion,” says Mesbah.                          harsh environment.
     in and around New Orleans in 2003.                                                               “And of course communications
     The U.S.-based Utilities Telecom Council         AREVA T&D: operational telecom               systems in substations must be user-
     (UTC), which describes itself as the             integrator and network architect             friendly,” emphasizes Mesbah. “Utility
     “voice of critical infrastructure commu-                                                      technicians don’t necessarily have
     nications,” posted an alert in August            Designing systems that meet operational      specific expertise in telecommunica-
     2007 to the effect that operators were           constraints is the job of architects and     tions. They must be able to operate
     “challenging vigorously” a recommen-             integrators, like those at AREVA T&D         and configure systems with no risk or
     dation by the Federal Communication              Telecommunications. “Sure, we develop        fear of error.”
     Commission (FCC) that “commercial
     operators beef up their networks so                                                           Invest to save and to increase
     that they are capable of operating                “Communications                             performance
     during power outages.” Some were
     actually asking the FCC to scuttle or
                                                            systems                                Utilities’ present inclination to maintain
     make major changes to the new rule.                 in substations                            dedicated networks despite the cost-
                                                      must be user-friendly.”                      conscious environment and ROI issues
                                                                                                   pushing toward outsourcing, confirms
                                                                                                   this approach. The ROI must be bal-
                                                                                                   anced against the cost or risk of not
                 The Jahra control room using                                                      investing. Communications for a power
      the latest telecommunications systems
       to operate and configure the network.                                                       utility is not a commodity or end product,
                                                                                                   but an integral part of each operational
                                                                                                   process. A dedicated telecommunica-
                                                                                                   tions infrastructure means keeping full
                                                                                                   control of all processes that require net-
                                                                                                   work-wide communications and adding
                                                                                                   new services and applications at incre-
                                                                                                   mental cost when and where needed.
                                                                                                      The case for dedicated networks is
                                                                                                   strong in terms of safety, reliability—and

                                                                                                   to KnoW More @

28   Think T&D///Winter 2009-2010

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