Distribution Automation


  Download the Network Communications Platform brochure

GE's Network Communications Platform enables the mission critical applications required to meet power automation needs. The solution enables Utilities to build a single network infrastructure for connectivity to existing and emerging applications.

A solution capable of connecting the grid requires blending communications technology in a way that meets the varying needs for bandwidth and latency while at the same time providing uniform network management in a secure, end-to-end system.
 
Our real-world knowledge provides customers with solutions to effectively address operational needs, while proactively balancing risk management and adhering to compliance requirements. This experience is translated to provide Utilities a complete turn-key strategy including system design, integration, deployment and data management and analytics to ensure a successful implementation.

Whether it's a large AMI network deployment or a SCADA infrastructure upgrade, GE has expert-driven, end-to-end, multi-use networks that provide services to a rich set of automated applications, including:

AMI & Smart Meters

HAN

SCADA

Distribution Automation

Substation Automation

Fiber & Wireless Microwave Backhaul


Network Communication Devices

GE's industrial strength network communication devices are extremely scalable, utilize a common SNMP based network management system, and provide FIPS 140-2 compliant security standards to authenticate network users. The communication is built using a portfolio of IP-based networking devices, including:

Fiber and wireless high capacity backhaul products

Hardened Ethernet switches and serial extension

Narrowband licensed and unlicensed wireless access technology for non- real-time monitoring and battery powered applications


 
Smart Grid Communications Solutions


New, unified network and element management systems are required to manage larger and more complex multi-use networks that span a Utility's entire service territory. These systems use a policy-based approach to configuring devices and managing QoS and security. These systems also have a rich set of tools to perform fault, configuration, performance and security management, as well as facilitating network planning and risk mitigation.


Management characteristics of MDS PulseNET Enterprise

Fault Management

Real-time and configurable alarm monitoring

Graphic representation of alarms and severity levels including corrective action and probable cause

Alarm history log - up to 365 days can be stored

Alarm synchronization mechanism - including network elements and northbound interface


Configuration Management

Transaction and session management

Auditing and event logging

Role-based access control

Authentication over RADIUS and LDAP

Rollback management

Replication and high availability

Performance Management

Personalized reports easily viewed on any available point on the network

Performance history is maintained on 15-min and 24-hour resolution for up to 365 days

PM collection – user-defined, centralized scheduled network element polling – PMs, inventory, logs and alarm synchronization


Security

User-controlled levels and privileges

User access control

Secured channels and protocols

Authentication and encryption

NMS/NEs operation audits RADIUS client




GE's broad industry knowledge and technical expertise can provide Utilities with the services required to deploy a multi-use communications network. GE can manage the process from start to finish, generate system specifications, build network infrastructure and work with key strategic partners to help ensure interoperability and adherence to common standards.

Service Capabilities

Technology Strategy
GE works with Utilities to assess the business case for new technologies, perform market and competitive analysis, recommend the best network options, and oversee the RFP process necessary to evaluate and choose vendors.

Network Engineering Services
Integrate Advanced Metering Infrastructures, SCADA and Distribution Automation Systems into a single multi-use system. Design the wireless networks necessary to transmit data from smart devices.

Network Security Design
Provide expertise in all aspects of cyber security, create Grid Automation networks that are secure from end-to-end. Identify and evaluate security gaps and will define security strategies and plans to address any open issues.

Software Services
Integrate Smart Grid network applications and ensure the system has the performance and capacity to run enterprise scale Smart Grid applications. GE's Software Services Integration (SSI) team provides the tools needed to reduce cost and increase energy efficiency.

Network Deployment Services
Provide project management, construction management and installation services needed to deploy communication networks for smart meters, SCADA and distribution automation networks in the field, as well as maintain them in the future.

Program Management
Provides certified and experienced Program Management professionals to organize and lead every stage of a Smart Grid implementation to ensure projects are deployed in a timely manner.


Wireless Communication Solutions

Data Acquisition

LAN Extension

Backhaul
GE's MDS™ industrial wireless communications business is a global, single-source, end-to-end wireless solution provider. Our wireless devices are packaged for industrial environments and have been rated and tested to harsh industrial specifications. Our wireless networks carry serial and IP/Ethernet traffic, plus analog and digital I/O signals connected directly to field devices and sensors, accommodating an extensive array of industrial protocols.
JungleMUX Fiber Optic Multiplexers
The JungleMUX SONET and TN1U SDH Multiplexers deliver optical networking solutions with data speeds of OC-48 and STM-16 respectively. The equipment provides integrated transport and access capabilities for voice, data, Ethernet/IP WAN, video and utility teleprotection traffic combined in a single unit. Element and Network Management is provided by GE's VistaNET software suite.
Hardened Ethernet Switches
The MultiLink family is a line of industrial and substation hardened Ethernet switches that provide secure, reliable communications for critical infrastructure devices. The MultiLink Ethernet switches ensure communications networks are available, fast and secure. Additionally, they provide high speed network recovery of redundant Local Area Networks and include options to extend an Ethernet network to support serial devices and relays.
Field Area Data Gateway
The D400 is a hardened field area gateway with advanced security features including remote user authentication, access control and auditing to ensure compliance with NERC/CIP requirements. It provides a full suite of SCADA protocols that allow for direct communications with master stations and collects sensor, status, event and fault report data from serial or LAN-based devices.
Network Management Software
Covering GE's MDS wireless product portfolio, from data acquisition to backhaul, MDS PulseNET is capable of creating, storing and software trending derived metrics using built-in program logic. MDS PulseNET software provides warning performance thresholds that can trigger exception events, which in turn can trigger specific actions, such as sending messages to trouble ticketing systems or other management systems.