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Calix powers Smart Grid project

Tue, 09/28/2010 - 8:35am
Brian Santo

Calix announced a pair of new GPON installations, one a Smart Grid project with the town of Concord, Mass., and the other using a straight-up broadband network with the city of Highland, Ill.

In July, Concord issued a $4.5 million bond to fund a Smart Grid project for the local energy distributor, Concord Municipal Light. Concord Light's goal was to create a system to put in a two-way digital system equipped with sensors and controls that would allow the company to communicate with its customers, better control its network, help manage peak energy demand and encourage conservation.

  Concord Light Smart Grid System (Click to Enlarge)Contractors include Calix, Graybar, KGP Logistics and Wesco Supply. The two-way fiber-optic communications network will include the Calix E7 Ethernet Service Access Platform (ESAP) to deliver GPON to Calix 700GX/GE optical network terminals (ONTs) located at wireless collector sites attached to each transformer in the network. These collector sites are part of a wireless mesh network that includes smart meters and electrical devices, such as water heaters, in Concord's homes and businesses, Calix said.

Concord is putting into place a voluntary load management program; using Google's PowerMeter, residents will be able to monitor their energy and react accordingly.

Keith Ingram, telecommunications coordinator at Concord Light, said, "We are using advanced fiber access technologies from Calix to cost-effectively drive Smart Grid-enabled efficiencies in our electrical utility operations, but the real winners will be the residents and businesses of Concord, who will now have the tools to save money by monitoring and conserving energy in real time."

Highland, about 30 miles from St. Louis, is issuing $18.8 million in bonds to build its own broadband network. The city will deploy Calix's C7 Multi-service Access Platform (MSAP), E7 ESAP and the family of 700GX/GE ONTs.

The city expects to deliver broadband up to 1 Gbps to each customer via GPON and point-to-point Ethernet technologies.

Mark Latham, Highland city manager, said: "Due to the increasing importance of broadband to the quality of life of our residents, as well as the economic development of the city of Highland, we viewed the lack of broadband alternatives as a crisis and developed a strategic plan to address it head-on. By moving 'Fiber Forward' with a fiber access leader like Calix, we believe that we have put the city on the right path to a better future, and residents and businesses alike will soon be enjoying the advanced broadband services that they deserve."

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