This wiki compiles research on technologies and policies relevant to economic development, with a focus on rural & smaller towns of less than about 10,000 people, which as of 2018 can begin to transfer technology pioneered in larger cities & advanced jurisdictions (South Korea, Chattanooga, TN, Norway etc.). Energize Bridgewater and BVU are two examples of projects for smaller towns.
These demonstrate advantages of a micro-grid: unified district utility systems as small as a housing district, campus or small town. See unified district utility business plan for an overview of why one provider unifying district services makes sense and micro-grid_controversies_and_choices for an overview of difficult problems/barriers/constraints that should be understood before considering deploying such projects. For more on this please contact Craig Hubley.
The fibre-heavy smart grid is an essential service
Electricity and fiber optic services in a modern smart grid are deployed together: utility grade fibre coextant with distribution grid infrastructure (poles, closets, conduits) which may or may not reach into homes.
During the 2020 Covid19 pandemic, rural broadband services were severely strained and failures caused immense hardship for rural persons in North America, who tend to be more elderly, less technically skilled, and more vulnerable to infection if they have to find alternative connectivity. Responsible governments made major investments in the 2010s, but in the 2020s, their use for public health, telework and telehealth make them an essential service on par with roads, hospitals and the power grid. Thus underlining the utility of upgrading power & data together.
An inherent part of such deployments is universal gigabit wired Internet - a front end gigabit guarantee to local transit exchange. Outside the US government (which has committed to it for all public (hospital, school, fire department, government) buildings), such a gigabit guarantee exists presently in North America only in Chattanooga, Tennessee which deployed a gigabit micro-grid in 2010-11. , see also the new grid and Wikipedia: fiber to the x especially regarding FTTC technologies that require no new wiring except between the poles. Outside North America leaders are Finland (which has a 100M guarantee to local transit exchange for every home) and South Korea (which has a gigabit guarantee for every household) and Switzerland (which has a 4 dark fibre guarantee to local transit exchange which service providers can use). See wikipedia for more on such plans.
On the back and middle mile, cities like Santa Monica, major buildings have 10G guarantee to local transit exchange and some are considering 100G guarantee to local transit exchange. State-wide projects such as Maine Fiber Company and Network New Hampshire Now have similar goals to form an open access dark fibre system to which any carrier can connect. The combination of the universal access to customers provided by the front end and the universal access to providers at a transit exchange creates a market similar to the electric grid in which wholesale and retail are separated.
Who cares and why?
From 2012 to the 2030s, the global (and specifically North American) power grid will go through changes more profound than any since its creation in the 1890s to 1930s. A once-in-a-lifetime change that requires power and communications to be increasingly managed together, and ultimately to be delivered to consumer devices on one cable. See who cares for why particular audiences should be interested.
Current activities include
- home-district-practices-metrics by capital asset affected for economists
- home grid 2010-20 for homeowners, investors and real estate developers (Santa Monica examples are particularly useful re real estate).
- incumbent utility policy for decision-makers in electric utilities
Real world studies
- MEUNS studies - rural and small town utilities in Nova Scotia, Canada, which already has strong e-waste and [[Broadband for Rural Nova Scotia initiative|a commitment to a 2.5 megabit download minimum] for "100% of civic addresses" wikipedia)
- Lunenburg Region broadband report, example of how broadband and grids relate, explained to local government officials as an economic development goal
- Riverport District study - an example of how a rural utility co-operative (in Nova Scotia, Canada) can be a strategic asset to a community
- Mahone Bay study - coordination with resilient community efforts and Blockhouse School Transition project.
- EPB Fi-speed], Chattanooga, TN, first example of universal gigabit guarantee to local transit exchange in North America (to every subscriber in a 600 square mile service area).
- native reserve study, e.g. First Nations Help Desk and related fibre infrastructure and renewable supply in Millbrook  (search)
- - outdoor
- - indoor/outdoor boundary
- - indoor
- why G.hn over BPL wins - should be renamed why IEEE P1905 over IEEE P1901 wins or Qualcomm Atheros 60GHz roadmap which assumes this in its strategy
- Smart Grid Interoperability Standards Framework - now IEEE 2030 and the US National Broadband Plan, with notes on customer owns energy usage data and secure telecom is electric utility problem
In your home
- home users setting up powerline networking at home, including VoIP phones, to reduce costs - see optimal home network advice
- commercial users migrating to the lowest-possible-footprint easiest-maintenance networking - see optimal office network advice
- unified district or apartment-complex utilities delivering electricity and data, facilitating energy service company services  using OpenADR technology - see optimal building power and data network advice
- any of the above advocating to vendors to support standards and interfaces, e.g. OpenADR and other Smart Grid Interoperability Standards Framework technologies - see vendor lobbying advice
- opening dialogues with utilities and ISPs on district smart grids and BPL/EoP in the home, with implications of competitive power and data provision on the individual building owner - see utility lobbying advice
- opening dialogues with public agencies on implementing these standards in their own operations - see public sector lobbying advice
- opening dialogues with government on legislation to require utility support for OpenADR where it is slowing adoption, and making this a condition of any grant of use of right of way - see government lobbying advice.
For basic advice on desktop and data LANs, see box.referata.com where the Zero E-Waste box 2012 and ZEW0 LAN 2010 are developed. These will produce final recommendations in May 2010 (ZEW0) and thereafter in December every two years (ZEW2 in December 2011, ZEW4 in 2013, etc).
If you have no idea what this is about, see the home grid briefing note or a step by step briefing on all the issues above. If you know it's beyond you, feel free to ask a question of experts by email. For a more detailed scope and discussion see advice paths.