Ericsson opens utilities innovation centre in Texas

  • May 18, 2022
  • Steve Rogerson

Swedish telecoms company Ericsson has opened a utilities innovation centre at its facility in Plano, Texas, consisting of a purpose-built operating lab and demo environment to help utilities solve real-world connectivity problems.

“Private cellular networks are principal catalysts for utilities in their digital transformation journey to address multiple use cases, and utilities can now leverage our global utilities innovation centre to experiment with different 4G and 5G use cases and co-create with our ecosystem partners,” said Koustuv Ghoshal, vice president for Ericsson in North America. “We look forward to partnering with utilities around the world on their grid modernisation journey.”

The centre is integrated with Ericsson’s device testing lab a short distance from the Plano site, where energy utilities and OEMs can test the interoperability of their utilities field and IoT devices over mission-critical networks in a safe and secure environment. As a fully functional end-to-end operational lab, the centre contains a physical representation of an energy utility smart grid, enabling real-world demonstrations of end-to-end private network operations across the power grid from generation and transmission to distribution to end-users.

“Utilities require mission-critical networks that have to be secure, reliable and increasingly sustainable,” said Per Wahlen, head of business development at Ericsson in North America. “This centre is a state-of-the-art facility where we can work closely with utility companies, exploring new 4G and 5G use cases and delivering end-to-end solutions. At each point, you can see the benefits of the latest generations of cellular wireless networks in enhancing security, resilience, and efficiency of the power infrastructure.”

The centre creates an interactive, engaging experience to showcase Ericsson and partner products for utilities. The innovation centre environment is a learning platform for exchanging information and ideas between the utilities, Ericsson, and the entire industry.

The environment also allows for co-creation with Ericsson partners while utilities replicate their end-to-end use cases. The centre includes the firm’s experience centre in Plano and labs in Richardson, Texas.