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imageISLAMABAD: Ministry of Information Technology and Telecommunications (MoIT) is in process of developing a system to address various issues present in smart grid communication technologies.

A project has already been launched to achieve the purpose which presents a simple form of cooperative communication technique, known as Opportunistic Large Array (OLA), as a potential candidate for smart grid communications.

The principal investigator organization for the project, costing Rs. 7.42 million, is School of Electrical Engineering & Computer Science NUST, Islamabad. The project is expected to becompleted in 2016.

According to the Ministry here on Monday, sensors and sensor networks have an important impact in meeting environmental challenges. Sensor applications in multiple fields such as smart power grids, smart buildings/meters and smart industrial process control significantly contribute to more efficient use of resources.

Wireless Sensor and Actuator Networks (WSANs) are networks of nodes that sense and potentially also control their environment.

They communicate the information through wireless links enabling interaction between people, devices, or computers and the surrounding environment. The data gathered by the different nodes is sent to a sink, which either uses the data locally, through for example actuators, or which is connected to other networks (e.g. the Internet).

The Ministry said this project deals with the application of wireless sensor networks for smart grid communication systems which is an infrastructure that enables the delivery of power from generation sources to end-users to be monitored and managed in real time.

Smart grids must be deployed in both existing systems (which in some cases are over 50 years old) as well as within totally new systems. Nevertheless, significant barriers must be overcome in order to deploy smart grids at the scale they are needed.

It merits mentioned here that the OLA is a simple strategy that provides a Signal-to-Noise Ratio (SNR) advantage from the spatial diversity of distributed single-antenna radios.

A realistic and practical approach to deploy OLA in smart grid systems needs to be investigated thoroughly, designed, tested and then implemented.

Copyright APP (Associated Press of Pakistan), 2014

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