Thursday, February 4, 2010

Grid ComForum Plenary Panel on "The Role and Benefits of IPv6 in the Smart Grid" by IPSO Alliance

"At the GridCom Forum, a panel discussed the roles of IP and IPv6. In the ICT area, IP is becoming (or has become) the protocol of choice. A consensus is forming for smart grid as well. NIST’s "Framework and Roadmap for Smart Grid Interoperability Standards, Release 1.0” lists IP as one of the standards that people can agree on.
The panel consisted of:

Moderator:
•Geoff Mulligan, chairman, IPSO Alliance, 6lowpan working group , and IETF

Panelists:
•Fred Baker, Cisco Fellow
•Gary Stuebing, strategic planning manager, Duke Energy
•Latif Ladid, president, IPv6 Forum

Geoff Mulligan

Mulligan first discussed the imminent depletion of IPv4 addresses, which are expected to run out in two years. The solution is IPv6, which provides plenty of address space and security. (IPSec is part of IPv6 and will no longer be independently implemented like for IPv4.) With IPv6 in place, DHCP or NAT will no longer be necessary to save IP address space, simplifying many things.

From left: Latif Ladid, Gary Stuebing, and Fred Baker

Baker’s talk was very convincing. In short, the original Internet stack consists of physical layers (OSI is layer 1, data link is layer 2, the Internet is layer 3, and transport is layer 4) and application layers (5, 6, and 7). But many smart grid protocols, such as ZigBee, are implemented directly on top of the link layer. Baker called this "1-2-7 architecture.” Each protocol with a different link layer must go through a gateway in order to connect to other protocols, which are also directly implemented on separate link layers. Using an abstraction of the IP layer ensures interoperability. IP is the common denominator, and it should be used in smart grid as well."

Read More: IP(IPv6): The Protocol of Choice for Smart Grid(?) - Zen Kishimoto
Image and article Courtesy: Tek-tips.nethawk.net

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