Georgia Utility Selects Southern Linc for Mission-Critical LTE
Thursday, October 12, 2017 | Comments

Southern Company subsidiary Southern Linc entered into an agreement with Dalton Utilities to transmit distribution data via Southern Linc's new CriticalLinc mission-critical Long Term Evolution (LTE) network. The multiyear deal will enable 11 substations in the Dalton, Georgia, area to use Southern Linc's mission-critical LTE network for wireless data transmission.

Dalton Utilities is the first Georgia utility to take advantage of the new CriticalLinc network outside of Southern Company utilities Georgia Power and Alabama Power. Today, Southern Company electric utilities have more than 3,000 wireless data modules currently using the highly reliable, highly secure LTE network for distribution and transmission data and controls.

Over the last two years, Southern Linc has been constructing a new 4G LTE Advanced (LTE-A) network to meet the growing mission-critical data needs of its largest customer, Southern Company's electric utilities. The highly reliable and secure network will also serve the most crucial data needs of first responders and organizations like Dalton Utilities.

"We are excited about the opportunity to use faster, more reliable and more secure wireless data services for Dalton's electric distribution system," said Dalton Chief Energy Services Officer John Thomas. "This is another step forward in our journey to continually improve services for our customers.”

Southern Linc's new 4G LTE-A network offers network encryption over the air. In addition, Southern Linc strengthened the network's emergency backup power capabilities with hydrogen fuel cell technology at key locations and added main power and complete data center redundancy to increase the reliability of the new network. Southern Linc plans to begin migrating existing customers to the new network in 2018 when voice over LTE (VoLTE) services are available.

"We think working with Dalton is an ideal fit for us because the new CriticalLinc LTE network was specifically designed to accommodate the reliability and security needs of our most important customers--utilities and first responders," stated Southern Linc CEO Tami Barron.

Dalton Utilities has operated as a public utility since 1889. The utility provides potable water, electrical, natural gas and wastewater treatment services to the city of Dalton and portions of Whitfield, Murray, Gordon, Catoosa and Floyd counties. Beginning in 1999, Dalton Utilities branched into telecommunications with broadband services to large industrial/commercial customers. Dalton Utilities serves approximately 78,000 customers and employs over 300 area residents.

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