Rushmore Electric Power Cooperative builds smart grid network with Exalt

Campbell, Calif., September 8, 2010 — Exalt Communications announced that Rushmore Electric Power Cooperative has deployed Exalt microwave backhaul systems to deliver T1 and Ethernet traffic throughout its network and support IP initiatives such as smart grid.

Rushmore EPC is an electrical generation and transmission cooperative providing wholesale power to eight distribution members in western South Dakota.

Rushmore EPC began deploying microwave radio links in 1990, but the early adoption of smart grid technologies by one of its distribution members provided an opportunity for Rushmore EPC to rethink its microwave radio infrastructure beginning in 2007.

The cooperative’s legacy microwave systems were at the end of their life cycles, didn’t have enough capacity, or were proving too unreliable to handle the mixture of SCADA, remote control, advanced metering infrastructure (AMI), voice, corporate e-mail, file sharing and other data traffic.

“We began buying Exalt systems because of their reputation for high reliability and performance, and they have never let us down,” said Kory Hammerbeck, operations manager at Rushmore EPC. “In the coming years, we will standardize on Exalt microwave backhaul systems as we build out smart grid infrastructure for the rest of our distribution members.”

The Rushmore EPC microwave network connects substations throughout its territory, as well as local member utility offices in Custer, Martin, Mission, Newell, Selby, Timber Lake, and Wall, South Dakota.

In addition to high reliability and performance, the Exalt systems provide secure SNMPv3 management, making it easy to manage the systems from a single console at the cooperative’s operations center in Rapid City, South Dakota.

Rushmore EPC has deployed Exalt fast Ethernet and gigabit Ethernet systems in indoor and split-mount configurations. The systems were provided by Exalt partner Calhoun Communications of Sioux City, Iowa.

“High performance and high reliability at the right price make Exalt microwave backhaul systems the preferred choice for utility companies deploying SmartGrid technologies,” said Amir Zoufonoun, president and CEO of Exalt Communications. “With low-latency native TDM and Ethernet supported in every Exalt microwave backhaul system, capacities from 100 to 1,000 megabits per-second, and indoor, outdoor, and split-mount configurations, Exalt supports every operational requirement, from single city deployments to complex smart grid IP networks with millions of nodes covering large geographic areas.”


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