Photo by David Tonelson, Dreamstime.
David Tonelson Dreamstime

Xcel Energy to Build Private LTE Network Across Eight States with Anterix

Oct. 31, 2022
Private broadband network to span service territory in Minnesota, Michigan, Wisconsin, North Dakota, South Dakota, Colorado, Texas and New Mexico.

Xcel Energy Services Inc., a unit of Minnesota-based utility Xcel Energy, will use Anterix’s 900 MHz spectrum throughout the company’s service territory in eight U.S. states.

The agreement provides Xcel Energy dedicated use of the 900 MHz spectrum for 20 years, with two optional ten-year extensions. Xcel Energy plans to use the spectrum to deploy a private LTE network to support its grid modernization initiatives for the benefit of its 3.7 million electricity customers and 2.1 million natural gas customers.

Xcel Energy has conducted an extensive investigation of LTE technology and Anterix’s 900 MHz spectrum. Beginning in 2019, Xcel Energy joined with Anterix, six other utilities, and the National Renewable Energy Laboratory in a “high impact” project that validated the performance of 900 MHz LTE in utility use cases.

About two years ago, Xcel Energy began a limited deployment of the 900 MHz private LTE at two Minneapolis sites. In addition, Xcel Energy is an active member of the Utility Broadband Alliance, which “aims to assist its members in planning, designing and deploying secure, reliable and resilient private broadband networks to support America’s transforming critical infrastructure.”

As part of the agreement, Xcel Energy has also committed to an ongoing collaboration with Anterix which includes joining the utility strategic advisory board of the Anterix platform. As a member, senior executives from Xcel Energy will share experiences on its evaluation and trials of the Anterix integrated Platform. Xcel Energy will support technology trials with Anterix spectrum solutions and management services and will also contribute to the Anterix Active Ecosystem on key initiatives that support and address the current and future needs of utilities.

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