Navy Yard, RF Mesh Metering Network

During development of the Philadelphia Navy Yard's Energy Master Plan, Burns identified the need to engineer and deploy an advanced metering infrastructure (AMI) to facilitate the eventual implementation of several microgrids across the Navy Yard's 1,200 acre campus.

A critical component of the AMI is the communications backbone designed to support real-time two-way radio frequency (RF) data transfer between smart meters, distributed energy resources, substation and distribution automation facilities, and the grid network operations center.

As lead consultant, Burns supported the development and specifications of an RFP to create an RF-based communications network with the following capabilities and functions:

  • Utilize two-way communications at all levels
  • Bandwidth to provide 5 minute meter-reading intervals for all meters
  • Bandwidth to collect at least 4 channels of 5 minute data, daily blocks of register reads, and ad hoc meter queries up to 4 times/day for all meters
  • Report unsolicited alarms and exceptions from all meters in real time
  • Support remote meter reconfiguration and firmware download, periodic collection of register data from the meters, and the collection of register data at pre-determined times
  • Support future addition of data acquisition and remote control traffic between SA data concentrators installed at up to 5 substations and a Grid network operating center (NOC)
  • The backbone network must be expandable to support future addition of data acquisition and remote control traffic between up to 20 DA devices (automated line switches, switched capacitor banks, voltage regulators, and energy storage devices) and the Grid NOC.

When the vendor and technology were selected, Burns continued in its role as owner engineer and provided project and construction management services to PIDC.

Location: Philadelphia, PA
Industry: Smart Infrastructure
Client: Philadelphia Industrial Development Corporation

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