New telecom networks integrated into electric and water utilities

New telecom networks integrated into electric and water utilities | Courtesy of shutterstock.com

Electric and water utility companies are adapting to new telecommunications networks at a rapid pace, with approximately 60 percent planning for upgrades, replacements or new communications infrastructure within the coming five years.

“This change is challenging utilities to adapt to transformative technologies, and to place a heightened focus on security and regulation,” Dean Siegrist, director of Black & Veatch’s utility telecommunications business line, said. “Utilities must also manage an aging workforce that is being asked to adjust to – and find efficiencies in – a disruptive environment.”

Sixty-three percent of electric providers who participated in a survey stated that they are moving forward with new telecommunications systems, and 59 percent of water utilities said that are planning to do the same.

“A key driver is the need to support capacity demands for future smart grid/smart utility projects,” Siegrist said. “This is a clear sign that providers are developing systems designed to meet today’s communication and asset management expectations, while at the same time keeping an eye on how these systems will integrate with future expansion.”