Demystifying LTE and Cellular IoT Technology for Utility Companies


Discover how LTE cellular networks can help improve grid intelligence, operations and data management, and explore the future evolution of connected IoT for utilities.

See Guide for Utilities Considering Cellular IoT Technology


4 out of 5 of the Top 20 Power Utilities use Sierra Wireless Solutions to connect critical infrastructure and vehicle fleets

Logo - conEdison
Logo - Duke Energy
Logo - Duquesne Light
Logo - Eversource

The shift to cellular networks has transformed how utility companies manage assets, infrastructure and operations and serve their customers. The IoT provides them with the data and control needed to better monitor and manage supply, demand and grid operations.


LTE Applicability Across Functions, Technologies, and Geographies

Mobile Applications

With the IoT, utilities can extend the enterprise network to the field, turning the vehicle into a remote mobile office, and allowing all critical application to be run in and around the vehicle. With vehicle-ready I/O, GNSS location technology and inertial navigation systems, networking routers deliver detailed vehicle and location information - critical for field workers and central teams and fast response times.

Connected Utilities:

Maximize response times

especially after natural disasters

Track their fleets

hundreds of vehicles including bucket trucks

Remotely manage their fleet

to optimize usage and maintenance

Keep workers safe

and track /report unsafe behavior

 

Give field workers all the information

they need at their fingertips by connecting them to enterprise and enabling them to work in and around their vehicle

Record work

at job site to protect from litigation

Reduce operating costs

linked to multiple cell plans, tracking platforms

Fixed Applications

IoT solutions enable grid modernization and maximize business outcomes by providing the connectivity needed to connect grid equipment (reclosers, capacitor bank controllers, fault locators) to central /SCADA systems used to monitor real-time line condition, retrieve load data and interact with field equipment.

Maximize uptime

and reliability of their electrical distribution system

Improve the quality of power

and optimize Volt/VAR (voltage levels and reactive power flow)

Better serve their customers

(and improve revenue) and avoid regulatory penalties

Reduce overhead and maintenance costs

and streamline network operation

Private Networks

Private LTE offers a game-changing advantage to connected utilities. It addresses traditional concerns about reliability and security and provides flexible and extensible capabilities that facilitate increased productivity and improved grid operations.

Deploying a private LTE network can benefit utility companies in several important ways.

Coverage

A private LTE network is a virtual guarantee your organization will have consistent, reliable coverage across your entire footprint. Full control and ownership of your network ensures clear communication—even in remote areas.

Reliability

Keeping communications online is essential to running your business efficiently and effectively. Private LTE networks can be designed to withstand catastrophic events, keeping your system online during emergencies—when you need it most.

Uptime

With private LTE network deployment, you own and control your entire system. You can schedule maintenance, upgrades and any other interruptions or outages to minimize their impact on your operations.

Security

The growing threat posed by hackers and cyber criminals to utilities is well-documented. Security, regardless of your choice of network solution, must be a top priority. Deploying a private LTE network allows your organization to add new and redundant layers of security without compromising the quality of service you offer your customers.

Application Variety

No two utilities have the exact same requirements. A private LTE solution allows you to support a wide variety of applications and use case scenarios as needed.

A growing number of utilities are transitioning to a private LTE network solution as they work to realize the potential of smart grid modernization and digital transformation initiatives, including smart meters, gas sensors, voltage regulators, distributed energy resources and new applications to connect remote sites and workers.

Read Harness the Power of Private LTE

Watch Increase Capacity with Extended Broadband Priority Service for Utilities


Smart Energy Solutions

Icon - Smart Grid

Smart Grid Modernization

Governments and utilities worldwide are transitioning towards a low-carbon economy and changing the way power is both produced and consumed. The traditional power grid is seeing a revolutionary transformation that will unlock the integration of renewable energy sources, meet growing usage demands, increase power efficiency and quality, and enable new services to meet environmental targets.


Icon - Distributed Energy 

Distributed Energy Resources

The widespread introduction of renewables (solar and wind generation) has been a tremendous benefit in helping to reduce greenhouse gases and diversify the energy supply. However, integrating these new distributed energy resources (DERs) into the grid is not without challenges.

Ongoing retirement of copper lease lines is forcing operators of distributed electricity grids to find new ways to deploy Direct Transfer Trip (DTT), an essential technique for clearing faults. LTE cellular delivers the performance and security DTT needs, at a cost dramatically lower than that of fiber-optic cabling. LTE cellular is supported by management systems that create a solid foundation for complete grid modernization.


Icon - Smart Metering

Smart Metering Solutions

Smart metering benefits utilities by improving customer satisfaction with faster interaction, while giving consumers more control of their energy usage to save money and reduce carbon emissions. With power visibility all the way to the meter, utilities can optimize energy distribution and even take action to shift demand loads. The Internet of Things (IoT) transforms traditional energy infrastructure into interconnected “smart grids.” Smart metering is an essential element—and usually the first milestone—in smart grid implementations.


Icon - Remote Asset Monitoring 

Remote Asset Monitoring

Utilities have embraced the IoT with applications like demand-side management, Advanced Metering Infrastructure (AMI), Distribution Automation, and more. Most of these IoT applications connect traditional grid assets and are associated with the direct delivery of energy. Utilities also own and operate many other assets that do not directly deliver energy but are just as critical to the safe and reliable delivery of energy—such as power poles, weather stations, environmental sensors, underground facilities and more.

Want more information about Sierra Wireless' Utilities Solutions?


Thank you for your interest in Sierra Wireless. A sales representative will contact you shortly.
Welcome back {{ model['emailAddress' + key] }}
This resource is temporarily unavailable. Please try again later.
Loading...
Submitting...
By checking this box, you consent to receive commercial electronic messages from Sierra Wireless Inc. such as newsletters, event invitations, promotional and educational content, product update, transaction-related emails, and customer service emails in accordance with our privacy policy.
Related Resources