ISPLC 2013 - Johannesburg, South Africa
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  • Johannesburg, South Africa

  • Johannesburg, South Africa

  • Lesedi African Lodge and Cultural Village

  • Rhino & Lion Nature Reserve

Keynote Speakers
Below you can find information regarding the two keynote speakers that will be presenting during the conference.
Session Session
Tuesday, 26 March 2013, 09h00-09h30 Wednesday, 27 March 2013, 09h00-09h30
Speaker Speaker

Mr. Andrew Goedhart

Util Labs (Pty) Ltd

South Africa

Title Title
Secure, Cost Effective and Reliable Communications: The Backbone of a Successful LV Smart Grid T.B.A.

Integrating the last mile in distribution with transmission and generation is critical for the success of the smart grid and the utilities as a whole. It is important that the LV Smart Grid function as an equal partner in the larger deployment. Deploying the Smart Grid into the LV network creates a number of challenges relating to the sheer size, cost, security and reliability of the network. If we are to obtain maximum benefit from the LV smart grid the network has to support both command and control as well as information retrieval. The focus up till now has mainly been in attempting to leverage AMI deployments to provide this functionality. This is problematic as the current protocols such as DLMS/COSEM are optimised for legacy information retrieval which perform poorly in other contexts.

It is important to examine communications in the context of the LV smart grid features it will support and enable. When looking at the current and future LV smart grid these include operations and maintenance, asset management, network planning, theft detection, customer communications, tariff structures, security, load management and matching. The regulatory and environmental conditions also contribute significantly to the design choices of an LV smart grid communications solution. The LV smart grid functions optimally only if it has significant and preferably blanket coverage. If we are to achieve ubiquity especially in developing countries, the total cost of the communications solution is important, this affects design choices including frequency band selection. Installation, operations and maintenance costs significantly out weigh equipment costs for most deployments. Protocols that support easy of installation and reliable networks are critical to containing these costs.

This talk covers the requirements of LV smart grids, focusing on the benefits and drawbacks of PLC in this current and future context. It looks at design choices around implementing PLC and how these affect both hardware and protocols. It also shares the experiences of Util Labs in overcoming some of these issues in rolling out a 3 year, 40 000 device, national field trial using PLC.

Andrew Goedhart obtained a B.Sc.(Eng) Cum Laude from the Univesity of Cape Town in 1995. He also has a B.Eng.(Hons) from the University of Pretoria and is currently enrolled for an M.Eng. at the University of Johannesburg. He has a background in electronic engineering, communications and computer science. He has spent the last 18 years developing large, highly available, performance and resource constrained systems for: GSM telecommunications (Siemens Telecommunications), tracking and telemetry (Zaptronix) and the LV Smart Grid (Eon Consulting and Util Labs). He is currently employed as Util Labs' System Architect. He has spent the last 6 years developing and implementing Util Labs' LV smart grid offering.