This new technology, which uses available TV spectrum for broadband, could dramatically change the future of critical infrastructure industries such as utilities, power generation, pipeline, water, and gas industries. These industries need the support of advanced communications technologies that enable automation, control and data acquisition to:
- Manage the supply and demand of electricity
- Access critical data remotely
- Monitor substations, remote equipment and water reservoirs.
The TV White Space Advantage
Non-Line-of-Sight Performance over Long Distances
Miles of rural and rugged territory to cover? Remote smart grid applications will benefit from the RuralConnect, which works without line-of-sight to offer the capacity and reliability that utility operations require. TV White Space offers an abundance of unlicensed spectrum with a signal that can penetrate environmental obstacles, such as trees and walls. Non-line-of-sight wireless data needs cannot be met with any other existing wireless technology on the market.
While the 900 MHz spectrum is saturated and prone to interference, TV White Space makes use of unused UHF frequencies. UHF spectrum propagates better and with more reliability than 900 MHz, while providing an abundance of additional spectrum for critical utility networks. Utilizing a TV White Space network in place of 900 MHz means clients can connect to a Base Station in areas unavailable with current wireless technologies.
Connect Many Clients
Due to the long-distance propagation characteristics of the TV White Space spectrum, the RuralConnect requires minimal infrastructure to connect clients. One Base Station can connect as many as 50 clients in a 10 km radius for utility purposes.
RuralConnect is capable of achieving a download speed of up to 12 Mb/s per channel, which allows for rapid response and supervised control. This high bandwidth allows for automated two-way communications and feedback that can detect when a change has been made, request an action (such as flipping a switch), and send an alert.
SCADA Monitoring and Telemetry Equipment
Using TV White Space spectrum, SCADA applications can be vastly improved, updates can be deployed economically, and IP-based technologies can be implemented throughout the operation. The potential bandwidth and low latency of the RuralConnect allows for advanced real-time monitoring and control of pumps, switches, circuits, tank levels, etc.
Machine to Machine (M2M) and the Internet of Things (IoT)
The RuralConnect is capable of connecting many clients in a wide coverage area with minimal infrastructure. This spectrum provides an alternative to crowded microwave and 900 MHz spectrums, resulting in available space for devices to connect and send data with high throughputs and minimal latency. This potential can fuel the wireless digital function of machine automation, asset tracking, transfer switch operation, smart metering (current and voltage), video security, and feedback / control systems.
Smart Grid (Power Grid Control / Automation)
There are 50 million homes in the U.S. with smart meters, and 15 million homes that require non-line-of-sight smart-grid solutions. The RuralConnect solution is ideal to fuel this connectivity as it can support many devices (digital electricity meters for homes and businesses, home-energy management systems, power-grid automation switches) and provide backhaul for smart-grid applications in rural communities where traditional technology can’t reach.
Water / Wastewater Management
The RuralConnect is able to remotely and wirelessly operate a system that requires an advanced level of information and control. In a water management system, the RuralConnect would be linked with sensors that would allow an operator to read detailed information on pressure, volume, control valves, and pumps, and even monitor the operation through video surveillance. These tank sensors connect to the RTU, which then translates the data and backhauls the information through the RuralConnect to a control center, creating effortless communication with the system. The operator would then be able to read alarm reports, review and operate data, and manage the operation wirelessly over a digital connection for a modernized approach to water management.
Telemetry and Control Circuitry
The Trailblazer Leased Line radio connects phone lines to control switches to send simple messages for SCADA networks. In water management applications, sensors are connected to the RTU, which translates data then backhauls that data via the Trailblazer to a control center via an Ethernet, phone line or 4-wire connection. The Trailblazer Leased Line is capable of utilizing E&M (receive and transmit) circuits for operation management and control.
One of our most popular solutions is providing substation isolation and control using the Trailblazer Phone Line Extender or Hybrid systems. These radios can be used to provide a wireless isolation solution to bring dial-up phone lines to substations.
Electric Power Retrofit
Trailblazer systems are able to interface with legacy analog circuits to provide a new-and-improved and modernized approach to power grid control. The Trailblazer Star system is used to connect a multipoint network capable of operating transfer switches, reading currents and voltages, and managing power grid control utilizing minimal-interference licensed (4.9) and unlicensed (2.4 and 5x) frequencies.