Converged networks optimize costs and streamline network management. However, electric utility protection engineers often have to sacrifice using their high-speed communications-assisted protection schemes. The ICON Integrated Communications Optical Network with virtual synchronous networking (VSN) solves this challenge so that information technology (IT) and operational technology (OT) traffic both get the benefits of being part of a converged network.
There’s a lot happening in a converged packet network, from buffering to packet delays to jitter across the network. These cause significant increases in latency, asymmetry, and failover times, which means you can say goodbye to running superior protection schemes like line current differential.
ICON VSN is a breakthrough technology because it preserves deterministic time-division multiplexing (TDM) performance over packet transport with under 1 ms latency, which is good news for protection traffic. This means OT traffic can more effectively traverse the core network, guaranteeing critical protection messages always arrive at their destination—on time. And, ICON VSN works with any packet technology you’ve adopted in your core IT network (including Carrier Ethernet or Multiprotocol Label Switching [MPLS]).
With the increased traffic inherent in a converged network, you’ll need appropriate bandwidth allocation for each circuit.
Without ICON VSN, you might have to provision 20 Mbps for ten IEEE C37.94 circuits. However, with ICON VSN, you’ll only need 2.1 Mbps for the same ten IEEE C37.94 circuits. This kind of efficiency makes it easier to allocate the necessary bandwidth for all your applications.
When passing protection traffic across the core network, it’s important to configure the proper quality of service (QoS) setting to ensure protection is given the highest priority.
Without ICON VSN, you need to individually configure a QoS setting for each protection circuit. With ICON VSN, you can configure the QoS settings for all your critical protection circuits in just one step, saving you time and ensuring consistency.