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February 07, 2011

Pennsylvanian Utility Deploys Alvarion's WiMAX Solution

By Anuradha Shukla
TMCnet Contributor

Pennsylvania's PPL Electric Utilities is deploying Alvarion's BreezeMAX Extreme 3650 WiMAX solution as part of its smart grid communications network.

PPL Electric Utilities serves more than 1.4 million customers. This upgrade, according to a release, is enabled by a grant from the U.S. Department of Energy.

Upon completion, the first phase of PPL’s smart grid project will ensure initial coverage of more than 60,000 customers over 150 square miles in the company’s Harrisburg, Pa., operating region.

The utility will also deploy a new distribution management system and is planning future phases that will expand coverage of distribution automation to its other operating regions across central and eastern Pennsylvania.

Alvarion (News - Alert) offers standards-based as well as proprietary wireless broadband solutions in licensed, license-exempt and quasi-licensed frequencies for optimized smart grid connectivity and maximum return on infrastructure investments.

Its solution is being deployed as part of an agreement with Alcatel-Lucent (News - Alert), which is also providing a high-speed fiber-optic communication infrastructure for the project.

In addition, Alcatel-Lucent is ensuring end-to-end integration of these technologies on behalf of PPL.

“We are very pleased with the deployment progress of our next-generation smart grid communication network in our Harrisburg region around the state capital,” said Matthew Green, smart grid program manager, PPL Electric Utilities. “Alvarion’s standards-compliant wireless broadband products have helped us create a robust and secure communication infrastructure in our network. This project enables us to completely transform the electric distribution system and introduce efficient energy optimization and outage management techniques that will benefit our customers.”

“We are confident Alvarion’s field-proven 4G broadband wireless solutions will play a significant part in achieving PPL’s desired objectives,” said Eran Gorev, president and CEO of Alvarion. “We are very pleased to work with Alcatel-Lucent on this important project as well. By working together, we can merge our complementary product portfolios and expertise to create exceptional smart grid solutions for utilities around the world.”

Read a related article at TMCnet: “KeyOn (News - Alert) Inks Deal with Alvarion to Supply 4G to Nevada Communities.”

Anuradha Shukla is a contributing editor for TMCnet. To read more of her articles, please visit her columnist page.

Edited by Tammy Wolf

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