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PALAS - Powerline as an Alternative Local AcceSs


Power Line Communications, PLC, is a recent and rapidly evolving technology, aiming at the utilisation of the electricity power lines for the transmission of data. PLC technology opens up new opportunities for the mass provision of local, last- mile access at a reasonable cost. The PALAS project aims to develop and test a complete service and commercialisation package to potential players in the PLC market. This package comprises technical simulation and consulting tools, initial business and turn-key service models as well as concrete roll-out strategies. In addition PALAS will provide a complex and coherent approach to reduce time to market and to increase certainty on market, technological, organisational and economic issues. Thus, the project will support a quick and sustainable development of a market segment that will become a major infrastructure for the development of the Information Society in Europe.

Although there is a large potential in developing and exploiting the PLC technology, a number of issues have to be challenged. Only an integral approach, covering technical, economical and organisational aspects is appropriate to help new players to overcome current obstacles. It is the objective of the project to develop a framework for the fast development and the market orientated implementation of the PLC technology. This requires to meet the following four major goals: providing a clear projection of the PLC market potentials, providing a basis for the evaluation of technological developments, defining and implementing a set of PLC specific services, and organisational implementation of PLC business models. Only the parallel discussion and implementation of all these aspects will help new market players to implement PLC quickly and to shape PLC as a significant part of the basis of the European Information Society.

Work description:
PALAS commences its work with an evaluation of the current PLC market from a technical, technological, service and regulatory point of view. The introductory analysis of the present European PLC market and report on the current state of art is continued by an observation of future market developments. The resulting report is made public in order to increase awareness of the PLC business potential. The simultaneous technical evaluation includes both the production of a survey of existing technologies and the development and use of a tool to technically simulate the provision of various new PLC based services to business, private and public customers. It is accompanied by the analysis of regulatory issues and their discussion with the relevant European and worldwide authorities. PALAS will concentrate about a third of its efforts on the study of PLC based services, an outline of already existing services is followed by the development of a new interactive information service portfolio from the point of view of multi-utility and the analysis of its user acceptance in focus group interviews. A check of the technical feasibility, operability and acceptance of bundled and new services in an evaluation field trial conducted in two European regions will finish the service assessment. Insight acquired in the first phase of the project, the market, technical and service evaluation, is used in the second phase, the economic evaluation and development of business models ready for roll-out. An investigation of present and expected future structures of potential operators of PLC technology including power utilities and electricity companies and the development and analysis of critical parts of the value creation chain will provide a model for the organisational implementation of a PLC business. The final result of the project, the generic business plan tool for powerline telecommunication activities will be validated in at least two European regions.

- PLC market evaluation (month 6)
- PLC technology inventory and development roadmap (month 6)
- report on regulatory issues (month 12)
- technical simulation tool (month 14)
- business plan tool (month 18)
- technology implementation plan (month 24)
- evaluation of services usage and acceptance, trial report (month 24)

Funding Scheme

CSC - Cost-sharing contracts


Steinfeldstrasse 3
39179 Barleben

Participants (5)

United Kingdom
Westlands House, Whalley Road
BB12 8JX Padiham, Lancashire
Carl Gustavs Vaeg 1
205 09 Malmoe
Westerduinweg 3
1755 ZG Petten
Helmholtzstrasse 10
01062 Dresden
Steinfeldstrasse 3
39179 Barleben