Companies are building out the smart grid with various broadband technologies — cellular, WiFi, WiMAX — so why not good ol’ DSL? For non-network geeks, that’s the high-speed broadband that your phone company offers over copper wire. This morning, smart grid sensor and software maker Current is touting a new smart grid partnership with DSL provider Qwest (s Q).
Current largely provides the sensors that monitor different conditions on the electrical network, like voltage and current, as well as the software that processes the sensor information for the utility customer. While Current is mostly focused on the distribution portion of the grid, it can also provide communication gear and sensors for smart meters and in-home gateways, which it is doing for Colorado utility Xcel Energy for its SmartGridCity rollout. Because Current needs to get its information back to the utility, it works with a number of companies that provide that network connection. The latest is Qwest, which Current started partnering with, and is currently working with, for Xcel Energy’s SmartGridCity plan (Qwest provides phone and broadband service in Colorado). The buildout of SmartGridCity is supposed to be completed soon, followed by an assessment of the network’s benefits.
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