2.6 IT NETWORK DEVELOPMENT

The Unified Electric Power Technological Network (UEPTN)

Cutting-edge telecommunications systems and state-of-the-art IT solutions are integral to Federal Grid Company’s successful performance. The Company realizes the importance of this factor and works to create and develop the Unified Electrical Power Technological Network (UEPTN).

The UEPTN is based on the widespread use of up-to-date digital communication lines and is delivered by creating fiber optic communication networks, radiorelay links (RRL), modernizing high-frequency communications, expanding the satellite communication system, digital mobile radio, wavelength-division multiplexing (WDM), synchronous digital hierarchy (SDH), time division multiplexing (TDM) and Internet protocol (IP) communications.

Strategic Telecommunications Planning

In 2009, Federal Grid Company’s Management Board approved the 2009-2015 Telecommunications Management Strategy. In line with this strategy, the key goals for managing telecommunications include: providing consumers with reliable telecommunications services, switching the UEPTN to digital technologies and optimizing capital expenditures to develop the telecommunications network, in addition to operation and modernization expenses.The set-up and development of the UEPTN will take place in four stages, as per the applicable schedule (General Schedule for the UEPTN Set-up and Development till 2015), which was approved by Federal Grid Company’s Management Board and the Government Commission.

In 2010 total financing for the Company’s maintenance, repairs and target programs was RUR12,436 million. During the reporting period, the Company met 106% of its technical maintenance and repair plan, which represents a 6.7% improvement compared with 2009. All necessary repairs and technical maintenance activities at the UNEG units during the review period were carried out in full and on schedule.

The first stage (2005-2008): setting up a digital backbone network for Federal Grid Company based on proprietary telecommunications platforms and establishing a unified electrical power digital network (UEPDN) on leased circuits.

The second stage (2009-2010): completing development of the UEPDN, allowing all corporate branches to communicate and use digital communication lines at substations (277 substations).

The third stage (2011-2013): creating a digital distribution network to fully switch the MES East electric grid units (69 substations) and the MES North-West electric grid units (103 substations) to a digital format. In addition, the Company plans to set up digital communication lines for electric grid units in other regions (184 substations).

The fourth stage (2014-2015): completing setting up principal telecommunications platforms for the electric energy industry, including digitalizing 86 electric grid units.

In 2010 Federal Grid Company’s Management Board decided to develop the UEPDN in conjunction with a leading telecommunications operator, due to Federal Grid Company’s switchover to telecommunications services provided via the digital transportation network, which is based on UEPDN resources and the operators’ telecommunications networks. As a result, in 2010 the Company outlined the main cooperation principles and set up a pilot zone at Federal Grid Company’s branches – MES Volga and Urals. To implement the telecommunications service provision model, Federal Grid Company decided to provide its 100%-owned subsidiary Moscow Communication Center of the Electric Power Industry (MUS Energetiki) with the functions of the Trust Operator, with its principal duty being providing the Company with a modern high-quality range of telecommunications services, in addition to maintenance and technical services for telecommunications systems and means.

In 2010 24-hour shifts for the Center for Telecommunications Network Control and Monitoring started operating on the basis of MUS Energetiki at Federal Grid Company’s branches.

Latest Changes in the UEPDN Structure

Fiber optic lines:
As part of fiber optic telecommunications network development, in 2010 the Company commissioned the 1st, 3rd and 5th launch sites for the Chelyabinsk – Novosibirsk – Tayshet – Vladivostok fiber optic line (with a total length of 5,285 km and 77 facilities).

By the end of 2010, the total length of the Company’s backbone and distribution fiber optic telecommunications networks stood at 26,564 km.

Radio relay network
The radio relay network is used in the backbone and distribution networks of the UEPTN, either primarily in a situation in which it is not economically rational to install a fiber optic line or when a telecommunications network is required urgently.

In 2010 Federal Grid Company was allowed to use radio frequency or radio frequency channels on 9 radio relay telecommunications lines in coverage areas for the Bryansky, Stavropolsky, Yuzhno-Uralsky, Severny, Chernozemny and Verkhne-Donskoy PMES (MES subsidiaries). The Company also provided the State Unitary Enterprise “General Radio Frequency Center” with 28 radio frequency applications with the source data to receive inspection results on the possibility of using radio electronic means and their electromagnetic compatibility with radio electronic means currently in operation or intended for future use.

Planned Scheme for Federal Grid Company’s Fiber Optic Line till 2015

Satellite network
The satellite network enabled Federal Grid Company to upgrade reliability and observability at its electric grid units.

In 2010 as part of the first stage of Federal Grid Company’s Program for Reliability and Observability Improvement, the Company set up satellite channels for dispatching and technological management and the transmission of telemechanics data from 20 substations in the coverage area of Federal Grid Company’s MES North West branch and 16 substations in the coverage area of Federal Grid Company’s MES Center branch to respective Grid Control Centers of Federal Grid Company’s branches and dispatch centers of SO UES. This involved installing 14 small terrestrial satellite communication stations (STSCSs).

As part of rolling out the comprehensive automated system for security management (CASSM) at Federal Grid Company’s MES South branch, the Company installed 29 STSCSs at electric grid units of said branch. The newly installed STSCSs, including those installed in accordance with the AMIS EPFA UNEG program, will enable the Company to ensure the performance of the CASSM and to set up reserve channels for dispatch and technological management and transmission of telemechanics data to dispatch centers.

Mobile radio network
The mobile radio network is intended for operational service, emergency repair teams and alternate communication lines.

In 2009 Federal Grid Company continued constructing the TETRA-standard networks in the Moscow and Nizhny Novgorod Regions, which are scheduled for completion in 2011. By this time, TETRA-standard networks will be commissioned in Moscow and the Moscow region, St. Petersburg, Nizhny Novgorod and the Nizhny Novgorod region, as well as in the Chuvash Republic.

Due to extremely high air temperatures, in August 2010, personnel from regular and emergency repair teams of the MES Center and MES Volga received additional mobile telecommunications means using different technologies, including: 95 satellite terminals and 463 GSM terminals with SIM cards from alternative GSM operators.

Carrier communication system (CCS) along transmission lines
In 2010 in conjunction with Russian Ministry of Energy and the Ministry of Communications and Mass Media, Federal Grid Company worked to determine standard procedures for accounting, distributing and controlling radio frequency ranges used in carrier communication systems along transmission lines.

Telephone network
The power sector telephone network provides reliable communication lines for the dispatcher and the administration of electric energy services. The network has been built on the hub principle and ensures communication between the System Operator and other electricity market subjects.

In 2010 Federal Grid Company launched more than 20 digital private automatic branch exchanges (PABXs) at its branches’ electric grid units – MES. The Company also introduced a registration scheme for operating personnel communications, wireless communication systems based on the DECT standard and public address and radio paging systems.

GLONASS-based systems
Federal Grid Company is actively involved in efforts to adopt GLONASS technologies. In particular, in 2010 the Stavropolsky PMES introduced a pilot zone for a system to monitor pedestrian staff and automobiles using the GLONASS/GPS technology produced by Russian Navigation Technologies.

As part of the program, 12 cars of the line service teams were equipped with personal trackers. Ten members of the line service teams received personal trackers. The Company also introduced five mobile units ensuring rapid control over vehicles not equipped with fixed vehicle tracking units.

In 2011 the Company plans to set up a pilot zone at the Lower Volga PMES. As part of the pilot zones and based on GLONASS technologies, the Company will roll out a control and monitoring system for PMES vehicles, creating a standard geo-locational system with navigational and informational support to line service and emergency repair teams and prompt control, as well as implementing a control and monitoring system for pedestrian staff at the Company’s branches. There will also be a system to monitor and forecast the condition of towers for overhead transmission lines crossing over water obstacles and mountainous areas. Performances at the pilot zones will enable the Company to identify a list of GLONASS-based services recommended to be introduced at Federal Grid Company’s branches.

Data on CCSs commissioned in 2010 is provided in the table below:

Federal Grid Company's branch Total number of CCSs installed in 2010 Total number of CCSs as of 1 January, 2010 Total number of CCSs commissioned in 2010 Total number of CCSs as of 1 January, 2011
MES Center 12 1 168 17 1 184
MES Volga - 359 - 333
MES South 16 424 11 572
MES Siberia 4 911 6 1 212
MES Urals - 980 - 1 305
MES West Siberia 17 299 15 335
MES North West 34 906 59 1 608
MES East - 302 - 806
Total 83 5 349 108 7 355

Enterprise Resource Planning System (ERPS)

The ERPS is an automated business-process and technological management system. As of the end of 2010, Federal Grid Company has launched commercial operation of 20 automated business management system as part of the ERPS project.

Automated Technological Management System (ATMS)

The ATMS is a single distribution hierarchical system that integrates the facilities and sub-systems of existing and independently evolving automatic and automated management systems. It is based on the UNEG center for information management (CIM) and the integrated information exchange model (IEM), which uses ATMS hardware and software package (H&SP).

In 2010 Federal Grid Company began a pilot test of the H&SP (ADTMS) project at the Grid Control Center (GCC) of the Kuzbassky PMES, at the 2nd launch site of the GCC of North West (ADTMS), H&SP of SCADA for the first stage of MES Siberia and MES East. As part of the Program for Reliability and Observability Improvement (PROI), the Company introduced data acquisition systems at 26 substations, developed projects for telemechanics and upgraded the data transfer system at 152 substations, completed tenders and signed agreements to implement the telemechanics and data transfer system at 161 substations, and started developing projects at 172 substations.

Automated Measuring and Information System for Electric Energy Fiscal Accounting (AMIS EPFA)

Federal Grid Company’s AMIS EPFA is a multilevel territorial distribution system for data and measurements with centralized management and a unified center for collecting, processing, storing and transferring electricity measurements, as well as a distribution function for electricity measurements. The Company reacted and launched an automated information and measurement system for electric energy fiscal accounting that covers substations with voltage of 330 kV and above. Efforts to create an AMIS EPFA UNEG at substations with a voltage of 220 kV and below are in their final stage.

IT Systems Outlook

Developing IT systems, which enables Federal Grid Company to manage its business more effectively, is of particular importance to the Company. In 2011 the Company plans to launch R&D efforts to set up an electricity quality monitoring system in the UNEG. This will mark the first stage of creating a unified multilevel information monitoring system to measure electricity quality compliance with existing norms, which will later ensure a transition to the electricity parameter management system.

An equally important IT area is establishing a comprehensive system for equipment management at Federal Grid Company. In 2011 the Company plans to consider principal approaches to building a comprehensive equipment management system.