Telecommunications play a central role in the operations of energy networks. ENA's Energy Networks Strategic Communications Group (ENSCG) and allied bodies provide opportunities to exchange information and best practice in the key elements of telecommunications in Electricity and Gas Distribution networks. Issues covered by ENSCG's allied groups include safety, standards, use of internet protocol, cyber security, spectrum management and European Updates. [last updated September 2013]
Energy Network Strategic Telecommunications Group
ENSCG and its associated groups will endeavour to assist member companies make informed decisions on issues that are likely to affect any aspect of their essential Operational IT and Telecommunications Asset base.
The group provides a focus for liaison, co-ordination and information in areas of mutual interest to ENA member companies.
- It promotes the interests, growth, good standing and competitiveness of the UK energy networks industry's operational telecommunications and IT services in the UK and overseas.
- It provide a forum for discussion among company members and others of Telecom and IT issues and to pass informed opinion on these matters to Ofgem, Ofcom, government departments, and other institutions in the UK and the European Union.
Spectrum Allocation and Investment in Operational Telecommunications to Support Electricity Networks
Throughout 2018 ENA Strategic Telecommunications Group (STG), consisting of members of all UK Distribution Network Operators and National Grid, has been developing its narrative position statement on the current and future state of operational telecommunications used for electricity distribution networks. Significantly the narrative includes a review of what the industry considers to be required to support the development of smart networks driven by projects within the Open Networks development of the electricity network and including the introduction of active network management at lower voltage levels and the capabilities necessary to facilitate the Network Operator to System Operator transition for both Distribution and Transmission networks. It is intended that this document supports further discussion with government and regulatory authorities but also provides key information to other interested stakeholders.
Electricity network operators recognise the increasing complexity of network management when addressing the challenges of providing a leaner, more efficient network and how enhanced operational telecommunications are essential to achieving this. The narrative is the first step along this path to enhanced operational telecommunications capability and is intended to support the electricity network operators as they look to develop their business model to reflect the changing market context.
ENA STG welcome feedback and discussion with all interested parties while they continue to develop and deliver their 2019 work-plan and the longer term strategic aims of the electricity network’s operational telecommunications needs leading up to and beyond the RIIO ED2 regulatory period.
Download the Narrative Brochure here.
Download the Narrative Summary here.
Joint Radio Company Advisory Group (JAG)
The Joint Radio Company (JRC) is the spectrum management organisation of the UK Fuel and Power Industry. ENSCG liaises with JRC on convergence issues and other shared interests.
Energy Industry Telecommunications Committee
The Energy Industry Telecommunications Committee (EITC) has a watching brief on all aspects of telecommunications to identify and report potential threats and benefits to members. EITC incorporates all activities previously managed via the NGN, CCSG and ROEP forums.
EITC Area: Click for documentation
Rise of Earth Potential (ROEP)
Before carrying out any work or operation on, or in, the vicinity of a site containing electrical plant or an electric line, or on which electrical plant or an electric line is located, it is incumbent on the developer, operator or planner to establish who is in control of the site and make all necessary enquiries on the site's ROEP status. The list of ROEP contacts for ENA member companies can be accessed from the link below:
No assumption should be made on the condition or status of any site containing electrical plant or an electric line, or on which electrical plant or an electric line is located, of any company which is not listed on this contact schedule.
Developers must act in accordance with 2003 No. 2553 ELECTRONIC COMMUNICATIONS 'The Electronic Communications Code (Conditions and Restrictions) Regulations 2003:
The ICT Group will address operational ICT essential to the deployment of smart meters and operations of smart grids. Specifically the group will look at standards, communications, data management, control and the carbon footprint of technology associated with Smart Meters and Smart Grids.
Optical Fibre Standing Committee (CS5)
The Optical fibre standing committee (CS5) forum is for ENA member companies interested in the installation and maintenance of optical fibre telecommunications networks on HV overhead power lines. It is running two sub committees presently the ADSS [All Dielectric Self Supporting] group and the OHUG [Overhead and Underground] group both looking at common methods of provisioning, installation and maintenance of these technologies.
Power Line Carrier (PLC)
The Power line communications forum has been set up to represent the interests of the electricity industry on provision of telecommunications services over LV power lines. The activities of the group are now carried out in association with the EITC group.
Cyber security like other crimes such as drugs or illegal immigration is hard to quantify. All we can truly say is that it is out there. Collaboration and best practice is one of the best ways of defending against attacks, potential or actual. The grid will become more vulnerable as it grows smarter and the Cyber Security Forum engages with UK and European bodies and specialists in bringing best practice to the UK Grid. We are in progress with making a Network Industry Risk Assessment and are running two sub groups an Industry Benchmarking Working Group and a Risk Assessment Methodology Working Group.