RAD's Megaplex platform supports Brazilian utility CELPE

CELPE, a Brazilian power utility in the state of Pernambuco, says it has nearly completed the second phase in the upgrade of its communications network by extending its digital backbone to the city of Serra Talhada, 415 km from its corporate headquarters in Recife.

CELPE, a Brazilian power utility in the state of Pernambuco, says it has nearly completed the second phase in the upgrade of its communications network by extending its digital backbone to the city of Serra Talhada, 415 km from its corporate headquarters in Recife.

To accomplish this, CELPE acquired and installed fourteen Megaplex-4 multiservice access nodes manufactured by RAD Data Communications. The Megaplex units, a prime component of RAD's Service Assured Networking toolkit for power utilities, were integrated into 12 sites: CELPE’s main network core situated at its integrated operations center and 11 substations.

In the first phase of the project, which was completed about a year ago, CELPE replaced its old 2-Mbps PDH infrastructure with RAD’s Megaplex-2100 platform. In this way, the original optical transport network became a 155-Mbps Ethernet ring with central management of all legacy and new packet-switched Ethernet services. This enables the eventual migration to an all packet transport infrastructure and the implementation of all smart grid compatible projects.

In addition to extending the optical network to Serra Talhada, the new phase of the project and the deployment of the Megaplex-4 increases CELPE’s network speed from 155 Mbps to 1 Gbps, and sets this higher speed as the standard for the company’s new projects.

"RAD's multiservice Service Assured Networking solution provides seamless migration from SDH to the new model of intelligent networks with full utilization of old serial circuits such as TDM voice and RS232," said Mauricio Santos Moraes Lobo, CELPE's telecommunications manager.

Megaplex also enables CELPE to adhere to the power sector’s new security and automation protocols, he added. In fact, CELPE is replacing its current DNP3 protocol to be compliant with the requirements of IEC 61850, a new standard for automation and security that is designed for the smart grid.

Using the upgraded infrastructure, CELPE can deliver guaranteed services for production and mission-critical systems. These include SCADA traffic information and telemetry channels for the electricity that enters and exits the substations that are connected to the network. CELPE also transmits qualimetry applications (which monitor power quality) over the Ethernet network, as well as all data and voice services.

Counting the 14 new Megaplex-4 units, CELPE's installed base of Megaplex access nodes will reach 40 devices connected over fiber-optic lines. The new IP network also supports quality of service applications and power distribution automation. CELPE expects that by the end of 2015, at least 25 additional substations will be integrated into the Ethernet ring network.

RAD says its utility customers also include AES, Endesa, Enel, Eskom, Hydro Quebec, IEC, Kepco, Meralco, E-on, Elia, Nampower, National Grid USA, Novosibirsk Energo, Powercor, and Terna Italia.

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