Calix counts on smart grid to feed fiber builds

Image representing Calix as depicted in CrunchBase
Image via CrunchBase

By Dan O’Shea

Energy management apps, more projects increasing GPON, Active Ethernet and VDSL activity

Broadband access gear vendor Calix announced a pair of municipal broadband projects this week, including one in Concord, Mass., that hints at the potential for smart grid projects to drive investment in fiber-based architectures.

Both the town of Concord and the city of Highland, Ill., are deploying the Calix Unified Access portfolio. The vendor claims that the $4.5 million Concord deployment, orchestrated by government utility Concord Municipal Light, is the first smart grid project in the U.S. that combines GPON and wireless technologies. The Calix E7 Ethernet Service Access Platform is being used to deliver GPON to the Calix 700GX/GE optical network terminals located at wireless collector sites attached to transformers in the network, Calix said. The configuration will allow the utility to better manage peak energy demand and allow residents to monitor their own energy usage using tools like Google’s PowerMeter.

Geoff Burke, senior director of corporate marketing at Calix, said long-anticipated smart grid projects may finally be driving a new round of fiber deployments. There are several reasons for the spike. “There is both federal and state funding available for smart grid deployments. As current or aspiring communications service providers are evaluating their fiber plans, it provides yet another source of funding,” Burke said, adding, “Along a complementary line of thought, it is a natural value added service to be deployed over a fiber network and can generate real savings or revenue for a service provider, depending on whether they are a municipality that run their own electric utility, or a traditional telco that is working in conjunction with the local utility and being paid for enabling the efficiencies.”

Lastly, Burke said, “Smart grid is proving to be a natural catalyst for pulling fiber forward in the access network, encouraging service providers to pull fiber incrementally out to at least the transformers, which are becoming wireless aggregation points for smart grid in their networks, thereby laying the foundation for future deployment all the way to the home or business.”

Article Continued on Connected Planet…

About Mark Milliman

Mark Milliman is a Principal Consultant at Inphotonics Research driving the adoption and assisting local governments to plan, build, operate, and lease access open-access municipal broadband networks. Additionally, he works with entrepreneurs and venture capitalists to increase the value of their intellectual capital through the creation of strategic product plans and execution of innovative marketing strategies. With more than 22 years of experience in the telecommunications industry that began at AT&T Bell Laboratories, Mark has built fiber, cable, and wireless networks around the world to deliver voice, video, and data services. His thorough knowledge of all aspects of service delivery from content creation to the design, operation, and management of the network is utilized by carriers and equipment manufacturers. Mark conceived and developed one of the industry's first multi-service provisioning platform and is multiple patent holder. He is active in the IEEE as a senior member. Mark received his B.S. in Electrical Engineering from Iowa State University and M.S. in Electrical Engineering from Carnegie Mellon University.
Bookmark the permalink.

Comments are closed.