Our customer - who is a smart grid communications leader - was using another vendor's management framework for managing the NAN and HAN part of their smart grid network. They were also using the EMS developed by Dhyan for managing the WAN part of the network. The customer had to access two different applications in order to manage their smart grid network and there were operational issues and additional hardware costs involved for their customers (Large utility companies in North America) to use 2 applications.
They wanted to have a unified solution to minimize the operational and learning issues in using two different EMSs. "Having a single UI to manage both the WAN and NAN part" was also considered. But this "introduced" complexities in terms of the disparate nature of the devices and "grouping them into a single view" would lead to bad user experience.
The customer also wanted to have a "scalable solution" considering the large scale utility deployments. Their customer - who is one of large utility provider in North America - was having around 1 million meters deployment across the state. Following were the challenges in managing the large scale network.
- Performance and bandwidth issues while managing those devices through an EMS.
- Datacollection tasks were generating huge load on the server during a datacollection cycle.
- Devices would be sending traps as much as one thousand traps per second.
Dhyan proposed a solution to customize SmartMan for managing the NAN, HAN and WAN devices using single EMS. Both the devices and SmartMan supported SNMP protocol to exchange data. SmartMan's flexibility helped in supporting different device types easily.
To address the single web interface problem, the "web interface" was split into two distinct views for NAN and WAN. The operators could connect to the EMS server through a browser and access both NAN management UI and WAN management UI. By clicking of an icon, users were able to switch between the "different" management views. This has also benefited our customer in terms of reduced operational costs & maintenance costs of two different EMS applications.
- To address the scalability problem, Dhyan SmartMan's capabilities were effectively utilized in the customized application.
- The datacollection problem was solved using a "time-sliced algorithm" such that the load has been evenly split-up with in the datacollection window.
- Dhyan SmartMan's fault management framework which has one of the world's best trap processing engines was able to handle thousands of traps per second.
- Today, the "SmartMan based EMS" has become the USP for our customer. The operators at the utility site are happy since they are able to troubleshoot the issues in near real time using the SmartMan based EMS.