FW: [BPLandHamRadio] Rural Electric Coops Likely to Use
Paul L Rinaldo
prinaldo at mindspring.com
Fri Dec 16 06:29:29 CST 2005
Gang, FYI. Paul
>From: BPLandHamRadio at yahoogroups.com
>[mailto:BPLandHamRadio at yahoogroups.com] On Behalf Of Ken Brown
>Sent: Thursday, December 15, 2005 11:38 AM
>To: BPLandHamRadio at yahoogroups.com
>Subject: [BPLandHamRadio] Rural Electric Coops Likely to Use
>Rural Electric Coops Likely to Use BPL-Satellite Combination
>14 December 2005
>Warren's Washington Internet Daily
>Volume 6; Issue 240
>Rural electric cooperatives likely will use a "patchwork" of
>technologies such as broadband over power line (BPL) and satellite
>rather than build out BPL alone for Internet operations, said Steven
>Collier, vp-emerging technologies for the National Rural Telecom Coop
>(NRTC). With pilot projects in Fla. and Md., the NRTC is running a BPL
>study, with a report on results expected this month.
>NARUC's BPL Task Force, studying BPL's potential to fill rural broadband
>holes, will use the NRTC results to make recommendations.
>Collier told us the study aims to gauge a BPL system's performance on a
>rural feeder, with emphasis on speed, latency and network functionality.
>"We weren't attempting to prove out economics or do a field trial or any
>of that sort of thing," he said: "It was to be able to say, 'Here is how
>far you can reasonably expect to reach with this [BPL] technology along
>a distribution feeder and still have acceptable performance.'"
>BPL is a "very interesting" concept for rural utilities, Collier said,
>but "I don't how many of our rural electric cooperatives would actually
>get into the ISP business." Many likely would act as landlords, leasing
>lines to ISPs, he said. Few cooperatives are pursuing BPL because "it's
>still a very early stage business,"
>Collier said. A couple of BPL trials by cooperatives haven't gone
>commercial yet, he added.
>As for internal utility uses, on which the BPL equipment industry is
>banking as a spur to utility embrace of the technology, Collier said
>while it interests rural utilities, internal applications such as
>automatic meter reading are "fairly low bandwidth applications."
>Most electric coops use slower power line carrier technologies known as
>PWACS and Turtle for functions like meter reading. "The expense of
>building out broadband over long rural distribution lines just for
>internal applications is prohibitive," he said.
>If BPL were available throughout an electric cooperative's service area,
>it might use BPL for internal tasks, Collier said, but "it's unlikely
>that it would build out broadband solely for the purpose of internal
>Little Internet-enabled distribution gear is available for internal
>uses, Collier said. Single-phase residential meters that would hook up
>to BPL aren't readily available, for instance. Making them work requires
>a modem, boosting costs, he added. But as more equipment is available
>for metering and internal utility controls, "that may move this [BPL]
>along a bit."
>Satellite broadband would work for rural areas unlikely to see
>facilities-based solutions such as DSL, fiber, cable or BPL any time
>soon, said Collier. Satellite with capacity limitations and "some
>latency" is an "edge play," he said: "But if it's all you've got in the
>middle of nowhere it looks pretty good." A rural electric coop likely
>would use satellite on the edges, with BPL, he said: "You can't justify
>building BPL all the way out." -- Dinesh Kumar
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