Opelika Taps Alcatel-Lucent for FTTH, Smart Grid Project

  • Alcatel-Lucent
  • FTTH
  • IPTV
  • Microsoft
  • Smart Grid
OPELIKA, AL and PARISOpelika, Ala., a small Alabama city 100 miles from Atlanta, will soon become one of only a few cities in the state to build a communitywide broadband network. It plans to leverage that infrastructure to enhance economic development and attract new businesses to the community.

Residents will have the ability to monitor and manage their energy consumption, with the help of smart-grid technology from Alcatel-Lucent, and will also gain access to high-quality broadband voice, data and video services, including lightning-fast Internet, IPTV and video-on-demand services.

A new, high-capacity fiber-to-the-home network will bring these broadband connections to households and businesses and allow the municipal electric utility, Opelika Power Services, to extend the reach of its smart grid by supporting new power sensors and smart meters.

The new network will allow the utility to monitor and measure performance across the power grid in real time, helping to more effectively manage the flow of electricity, identify and resolve problems quickly, reduce repair time for outages and minimize impact to customers. A detailed picture of customers’ energy needs will help the utility balance power supply and demand, leading to more operational efficiency, reduced waste and greener power.

Smart Meters to Save Money for Utility and Customers
The use of remote sensors and smart meters will provide savings to the utility by automating operations, enabling employees to work more efficiently and helping to minimize the risk of human error.

Residents will be offered advanced meter reading devices that provide them with real-time information about the amount of energy used in their households. Those using smart meters will be able to identify opportunities to reduce consumption and save money.

Just as important, the new FTTH network will allow the city to address the demand of many Opelika residents for higher-quality broadband services. A common citywide network that securely supports both smart-grid communications and broadband services will use resources more efficiently than multiple specialized networks. In addition, the universal availability of high-speed connectivity is expected to support a variety of new business opportunities.

Opelika Mayor Gary Fuller says, “We are pleased to work with Alcatel-Lucent to offer all the residents of the city of Opelika, as well as business and industry, a consistent quality of broadband service, which is what they have been asking for. Additionally, the deployment of smart-grid technology will empower people to make their own decisions about energy usage to help make their homes greener, and put more money back in their wallets in the process.”

Under the three-year project, Alcatel-Lucent will deliver an FTTH optical backbone network in Opelika based on GPON technology. The project also includes full services and integration of the Alcatel-Lucent ‘Triple Play Express’ solution. Alcatel-Lucent’s optical network terminal will be deployed at residences, and its 7750 Ethernet Service Switch will provide service aggregation, bandwidth management and subscriber control. Alcatel-Lucent will also serve as the integrator for Opelika’s IPTV service, which runs on the Microsoft Mediaroom solution.

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