Thursday, April 9, 2015

Will Information Networks become the “Backbone” of the Power System?

Information sharing between any kind of intelligent devices is a crucial need for today’s an the future Power Delivery Systems. It requires a huge infrastructure to send information back and forth.

Who do you think will put a lot of efforts into the infrastructure to get control over the information to be shared? Will protection engineers or mechanical engineers (e.g., of wind turbines) gain control over the information infrastructure? I guess that it will work the other way around: The specialists of network infrastructure will have a big impact on how the information will be shared in future.

One of the many activities is supported by a special group within the IETF (Internet Engineering Task Force): Energy Management (EMAN)

Excerpt from the current Applicability Statement


The objective of Energy Management (EMAN) is to provide an energy management framework for networked devices. This document presents the applicability of the EMAN information model in a variety of scenarios with cases and target devices. These use cases are useful for identifying requirements for the framework and MIBs.

1. Introduction

The focus of the Energy Management (EMAN) framework is energy monitoring and management of energy objects [RFC7326]. The scope of devices considered are network equipment and their components, and devices connected directly or indirectly to the network. The EMAN framework enables monitoring of heterogeneous devices to report their energy consumption and, if permissible, control. There are multiple scenarios where this is desirable, particularly considering the increased importance of limiting consumption of finite energy resources and reducing operational expenses.”

Click HERE for the current “Energy Management (EMAN) Applicability Statement, draft-ietf-eman-applicability-statement-10”

From an information sharing point of view there is no difference between information of a router or Ethernet Switch and a protection, monitoring or control IED (Intelligent Electronic Device) in the sense of a Fieldbus, DNP3, IEC 60870-5-104 and IEC 61850.

Finally IETF could play a major role in the world of networked devices – including everything that is believed today as somehow special: Field devices on one of the hundreds of fieldbusses, IEDs in the Power delivery systems, etc.

If you are looking for a unique (single standard) that is accepted and used all over the globe: It is IEC 61850. Use the ORIGINAL. A mapping of the IEC 61850 objects (IEC 61850 Logical Nodes and DataObjects) onto a MIB and SNMP could make sense – especially when the structures are used unchanged. The same is true for a mapping of specific MIBs for Ethernet Switches and Routers. This is already happening in IEC 61850-7-4 Ed2 for some network related information, e.g., in:

LN LCCH: Physical communication channel supervision:


More to come.

The motto of NettedAutomation GmbH since 2000 is: “The Net is The Automation”.

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