Radio Provides UHF Capabilities to S&C’s Smart Grid Solutions

March 2, 2015
The SpeedNet SDR will be used in S&C’s self-healing distribution automation systems around the world

S&C Electric Co. has announced the new SpeedNet SDR Software Defined Radios, which combines S&C’s mesh-radio technology with the software-defined radio platform from XetaWave. The SpeedNet SDR will support ultra-high frequency (UHF) bands, between 406 – 430-MHz and 450 – 470-MHz, and will be used in S&C’s self-healing distribution automation systems around the world. The new radios are being deployed on the Isle of Wight, off the coast of the United Kingdom, where they are being used with S&C’s IntelliRupter PulseClosers and IntelliTeam to reduce the frequency and duration of power outages on the island.

“Smart grid solutions like self-healing grids, energy storage and volt-var control need a means to communicate quickly and over long distances,” says Donivon Hettich, director – Grid Connectivity, S&C Electric Co. “The new SpeedNet SDR offering will help expedite smart grid deployments globally, and ensure these solutions reach full potential backed by a reliable, effective communication network.”

The SpeedNet SDR has received its FCC and IC certifications and CE conformity mark allowing it to be used in smart grid applications wherever the UHF 400-MHz bands are available. Subsequent certifications for South Africa, South America and Central America are in the approval process. The SpeedNet SDR will be used where S&C’s SpeedNet™ 900-MHz mesh radio operations band is not available or when licensed frequencies are preferred by utility customers.

The radio offers reliable Ethernet and serial connectivity, layer3 wireless mesh bridging and highly available mesh connectivity. The SpeedNet SDR has modulation levels up to 32QAM that provide the industry’s highest level of data throughput using licensed 12.5-KHz channels.

“This level of speed and reliability is essential to achieve the fault isolation and circuit restoration times provided by S&C’s self-healing solutions,” says Hettich. “The UHF frequencies in the licensed spectrum also offer a higher level of interference protection and improved communication range.”

XetaWave’s software-defined radio platform is incredibly flexible and scalable, allowing for multiple data speeds, channel sizing and modulations such that customers can optimize throughput and range. XetaWave is manufacturing the radios in its 17,000 square-foot facility in Louisville, Colorado, with S&C serving as a value-added reseller.

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