Lightning Protection: Protecting Communications Equipment in Substations

There is a lightning storm. Suddenly, the telephone line coming into a substation fails and communications equipment is damaged.

Can Utilities Build the Business Case for Broadband over Power Lines?

Broadband over power line (BPL) technology has matured rapidly over the last half-decade-from technology development, to trial deployments and now, in a select few locations, commercial deployments.

Conquering the Final Frontier: Using Satelite to Collect C&I Meter Data

Reliable access to large customer meter data is a core necessity for running a profitable and stable utility company.

AMR Communication Technologies 101: Four Ways Utilities Connect to Meters

You might expect meters to be the star of the automatic meter reading (AMR) business, but they actually share top billing with the communication technologies that impact system capabilities.

Lightning Protection: Improving Reliability Through the Use of Surge Arresters

Atmospheric discharges-better known as lightning-are still among the most common causes of outages on power systems in the world’s high lightning regions.

Thermal Inspections Prove Effective for Substation Maintenance, Safety

Utility companies first began performing infrared (IR) camera inspections in substations in the mid to late 1980s.


The Board of Trustees of the North American Electric Reliability Council (NERC) in early February unanimously agreed to adopt a comprehensive set of reliability standards for the bulk electric system.

BPL Shows Promise, but Still Faces Challenges

This month’s first feature article (pages 14-19) gives an overview of broadband over power line (BPL) technology-a technology that we’ve probably been remiss in not covering more lately. Interest in BPL has been rising rapidly the last year-and-a-half to two years as quite a number of utilities have conducted test deployments and a small handful have even rolled out BPL as a commercial offering to customers.


New six-port edge switches from GarrettCom Inc. provide high price-to-value ratios and more flexibility in utility substation Ethernet deployments.