Aclara eTWACS™ Technology for Electric Utilities
Proven results for electric utilities
Aclara’s new, enhanced Two-Way Automatic Communications System (eTWACS) technology builds on the success of TWACS® by significantly improving the performance and capacity of an existing TWACS communications network.
The TWACS® technology has a long history of dependable performance and Aclara’s eTWACS technology dramatically increases the communication capacity. While other competitors and communications technologies may strand existing customers, Aclara is committed to maintaining backward-compatibility with existing, deployed TWACS equipment. It has always been and will continue to be backward-compatible with regard to previously installed TWACS equipment. Due to this commitment to backward-compatibility, many older systems are strategically being upgraded to include elements of eTWACS enhancements.
What is eTWACS?
eTWACS combines evolutionary advancements in each of the system’s components into a revolutionary advance in power line communications. eTWACS uses the improved capabilities of the UMT-R Residential Transponder along with the improved communications of the MIRA and SCPA-G2 to dramatically increase the capacity of the AMI system. And while the highest performance increase is achieved by simultaneously installing all of the improved components, the real benefit of eTWACS, is the flexibility with which a utility can deploy it. Even if a utility chooses not to install a full-featured eTWACS system, adding MIRA recievers and SCPA-G2 processors will increase system performance and capacity. Adding UMT-R transponders will make all the data and functionality of the new ANSI-based meters with multiple days of storage available.
How does eTWACS work?
- eTWACS enables simultaneous communication on all phases, feeders and buses in parallel
- eTWACS is able to read meters concurrently on all phases, feeders and buses by introducing new addressing modes and because of the introduction of significant communication enhancements in both the Substation Communication Equipment (SCE) and the endpoints
What does eTWACS mean to your operation?
- eTWACS reads all meters in the time it used to take TWACS to read the feeder with the largest number of meters on it
- eTWACS utilizes the same basic TWACS communication technology with increased parallelism
- eTWACS provides the same high reliability reads day in and day out, only now it is faster by reading all 3 phases and all feeders on each bus in parallel
- Because of its parallelism, eTWACS automatically scales to read substation buses with more feeders faster
- eTWACS capacity studies are available for your system on request
Field testing has demonstrated the strength of Aclara’s eTWACS technology, showing that upgrading a utility’s current system to eTWACS significantly increases communications capacity on all substations. After collecting AMI interval and daily consumption reads, available communications capacity of the TWACS system can be increased to as much as 90 percent on some substations utilizing eTWACS. This remaining available communications capacity of the eTWACS network allows for additional data and control. Clearly, the eTWACS system meets the smart grid requirements of electric utilities today and affords it the opportunity to meet increased smart grid data demands in the future.