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A Smart grid is characterized by two-way flows of power in electrical networks and information in communication networks . The characteristics of communications in a smart grid vary for different applications that exist between control centers and power generating stations, distribution stations and consumer areas. For effective communications, proper communication network design and the selection of technology is essential. In this paper, we analyze the communication requirements of smart grids in electrical power distribution areas and in consumer places. As the communication in a Distribution Area Network (DAN) integrate the AMIs payload from the consumer area, it is necessary to analyze the data flow from the consumer area to control centers through a DAN. Few communication technologies are available to implement the DAN. Among that, WiMAX and LTE are more suitable than other technologies, as they satisfy the communication requirements and the cost. Little research has been conducted on analyzing and simulating the DAN by considering various applications that exist in a DAN. In this paper, we measure the smart metering capacity and the Quality of Service (QoS) performance (packet loss and latency) of DAN using WiMAX technology. From the obtained results, we also suggest that the 4G technologies are (WiMAX and LTE) more suitable candidate than existing cellular and wire line technologies for implementing the DAN in smart grids.
Date of Conference: 27-31 Aug. 2012