T&D World Magazine

Cooper Power Systems, IBEC Form Joint Development & Supply Agreement for Rural Broadband Delivery

Cooper Power Systems, Inc. and International Broadband Electric Communications, Inc. (IBEC) have signed a joint development and supply agreement.

Through the terms of the agreement, Cooper Power Systems will incorporate IBEC’s BPL coupling technology into its own market-leading surge arrester products, to deliver efficient, high-performance signal couplers for the rapidly growing BPL marketplace. As a result, rural utilities across the country--using their own powerlines--will be able to deliver Internet broadband services to their customers no matter the location.

“Customers outside of large urban areas are limited to the slow and frustrating proposition of using dial-up services for obtaining broadband capabilities,” said Scott Lee, CEO of IBEC. “Combining our BPL coupling technology with Cooper’s market-leading surge arrester products, we will be able to deliver the world’s most cost-effective and reliable high-performance capacitive BPL coupler solutions. Even rural utilities looking to provide their customers with broadband access over powerlines will be able to do so cost-effectively.”

In 2005, the U.S. Federal Communications Commission approved the use of powerlines for delivering broadband services. Using capacitive coupling for signal transmissions over these lines, IBEC and Cooper will deliver the capabilities that allow rural utilities to provide this service. Ultimately, customers will simply plug a modem into a wall power outlet to gain access to broadband services.The IBEC BPL package will provide a simple, easy-to-deploy solution for BPL networks operating over medium-voltage distributions systems that range from 12 to 35 kV nominal line voltage. The IBEC and Cooper developed signal couplers will enable the most cost-effective deployment of BPL communication solutions. The signal injector arrester products will be manufactured exclusively by Cooper Power Systems and marketed exclusively by IBEC to the utility and broadband communications industries.

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