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UK Homes Could in Future Provide Electricity for BT’s Broadband Network

Tuesday, September 8th, 2015 (8:29 am) - Score 3,421

The Broadband Forum has produced a new technical specification (TR-301) that appears to lay the groundwork for future deployments of VDSL2 (FTTC) and G.fast based broadband technologies that suck the power they need directly from home users (your electricity bill might take a hit).

Regular readers will no doubt be familiar with this approach because it’s something that we’ve touched on a few times before when discussing both G.fast, VDSL2 and the related Fibre-to-the-Remote-Node (FTTrN) and Fibre-to-the-distribution-point (FTTdp) technologies.

At present BT’s existing up to 80Mbps FTTC service takes a fibre optic cable from the telephone exchange to your local street cabinet (your existing copper line is then used between the cabinet and homes).

By comparison FTTrN / FTTdp sees the fibre optic cable being taken to a significantly smaller Remote Node / dp (mini fibre cabinet) and these can be positioned on nearby telegraph poles, within street cabinets or inside manholes, which means they can potentially also exist even closer to homes (faster speeds).

fttrn network diagram v1 ispreview edited

In theory this sort of approach should work well for extending superfast (24Mbps+) and ultrafast (100Mbps+) class broadband connections into areas that are harder to reach, both in respect to rural and urban areas. BT is currently conducting various trials, which can use both VDSL2 (FTTC) style remote nodes and G.fast based nodes.

Unfortunately one of the biggest problems with expanding the use of these nodes concerns the expensive question of power supply, which was highlighted by a recent trial in North Yorkshire that saw FTTrN being used to connect around 16 premises in the tiny village of Ulshaw (here and here).

North Yorkshire Council Update – 18th Nov 2014

BT have now informed SFNY that the wide scale deployment of FTTRN will be delayed by up to a year. The key issue is the cost of power. The trial at Ulshaw uses a 1:1 power supply to a node that serves 16 premises. This is the same power supply that would serve a cabinet with 200 premises or more. Therefore the cost per premise of FTTRN carries a significant ‘levy’ for power compared to a Fibre to the Cabinet (FTTC) solution.

The solution for BT is to find a way of aggregating multiple FTTRN nodes to a single power supply. Until this technical problem is solved, BT are not able to offer an ‘uplift’ to the Phase 2 premises number using FTTRN.

In some areas the issue of power may be easier to solve, but it’s a complicated problem and so far the proposed approach of “aggregating multiple FTTRN nodes to a single power supply” doesn’t appear to have turned up (we’ve asked plenty of times and so far a working solution has not been implemented).

One somewhat radical alternative is the idea of adopting a Reverse Power approach, which effectively means that electricity could be sucked from your home or office supply and used to power BT’s broadband nodes. Suffice to say that the Broadband Forum are heralding this, as part of their new TR-301 specification (supporting both VDSL2 and G.fast), as a big leap forward.

Kevin Foster, Chairman of the Broadband Forum, said:

This represents a significant amount of work over many years including often challenging global industry consensus building. This will be the global standard for this innovative access architecture, and one on which many Service Providers will build their ultra-fast aspirations. Technical Report 301 will enable the global economies of scale necessary for successful deployment of ultrafast broadband.”

Related setups would need to be robust enough to cope with isolated power cuts and to prevent other infrastructure problems from impacting upon nearby premises. Likewise it might also conceivably require some consideration by the telecoms regulator, Ofcom, given that it changes the approach to deployment in a way that could impact end-users (positively and negatively).

One of the key concerns in all this will be with your electricity bill, particularly given that an operator like BT would effectively be shifting the cost for this on to individual home owners where the price you pay for energy is likely to vary. Home owners also don’t have the same tax or economics of scale advantages that a big operator like BT has when buying power, but the impact of this might vary between locations.

The cost would of course depend upon how much electricity the node needs to suck and for this the ECI MiniCab 64V might offer an example. The node is able to serve 64 VDSL2/ADSL2+ subscribers and has a maximum power consumption of 170 Watts (shared between premises), although quite how this might play out in the real-world is more difficult to know.

On the slip side if you live in a poorly served rural area then the idea of paying more on your electricity bill in order to get superfast or even ultrafast broadband service might just be enough to out-way some of the potential disadvantages, but we suspect that many consumers wouldn’t want to have this approach imposed upon them without a choice. At the very least BT would also need to reduce the price of the service itself in order to compensate for the shifted power responsibility.

So when might this happen? BT appear to be one of the operators supporting the Broadband Forum’s new specification, but so far we haven’t seen any sign of a Reverse Power approach being trialled in the UK (at least not in a real-world community) and that’s not surprising given the obvious concerns. Never the less there may be some areas that would welcome such an approach with open arms.

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44 Responses
  1. I would not like to be the sole customer hanging off one of these things if I am then expected to foot the elec bill for the entire thing! 🙁

  2. Avatar Craski says:

    So by the sounds of it, the G.FAST trial just recently kicked off hasn’t resolved the “node” power issue either and still carries the same 1:1 power supply:G.FAST node?

    I’d personally happily reverse power a node from my property if I was reimbursed for the power usage (discount on my internet access) but I can see all sorts of hurdles to this approach, the cost of administering such a system alone over many years would probably outweigh the cost of providing 1:1 power in the first place.

    I’ve read lots of articles suggesting that nodes could be forward powered by unused copper pairs.
    I cant help but feel this issue is being over complicated by “overlaying” FTTRN over the top of the existing POTS/ADSL services.
    i.e. If a fibre node is installed to a manhole or pole and all houses that could be fed by that node are wired into it and have VDSL provide data and voice services, wouldn’t all the copper pairs from exchange up to that node then be available to use for power to the node?

    In rural locations, I’ve seen community broadband projects use solar panels and batteries to power repeater stations in remote locations on the top of hills. Would this be possible in rural locations to mount small panels / batteries on the pole? The technology seems to exist as we have solar powered speed warning signs that flash up messages in LEDs to motorists speeding on entering villages.

    Of course, the question remains, if its so damn hard to get power to these nodes then why are BT pushing down that route so hard with FFTRN and G.FAST. If you are going to have to run fibre to the node and the node has to be pretty much right next to your house, why not just install FTTP, no power issues?

    I had thought that FTTRN was going to solve the problem in my local area (150 houses too far away from an FTTC cabinet) but it seems that option is getting less and less likely to happen in the BDUK timeframe.

    1. Avatar Steve Jones says:

      Read my post where I’ve done some calculations. If this was implemented in the most efficient way, then it might cost about 50p per month in electricity costs, although that would depend on the number of lines active on a node. It looks like (depending on the nodes base power requirement) that the fewer the number of lines active on a node, the higher the cost could be. I could imagine on a nodes with only 5 lines that cost might go up to more like £1.50 per month.

      To keep the costs reasonable for small numbers of lines it requires a node where the base power requirement (that is the minimum required to keep it going for a single line) is low – perhaps 10W – and that the power consumption then rises gradually with the more lines that are activated.

    2. Avatar MikeW says:

      BT’s first technical trial of G.fast, somewhere in Norfolk that I’ve forgotten, worked with forward power, distributed from a single power pedestal. Details given out by BT showed how many pairs were used for power distribution.

      Huawei’s press release for the current Huntingdon trial indicates not only their involvement in the G.fast aspect, but also in this “remote power” aspect too. They go on to mention that the same solution is to be used for the commercial deployment of FTTRN.

      So remote power seems to have become viable.

      Why bother? Cost, plain and simple.

  3. Avatar tonyp says:

    What is the situation when there is a power cut, which is not so uncommon in rural areas, especially where there is poor or non-existent mobile services? Will access to emergency services be affected? Or will POTS still be available using the current loop over copper to the exchange still be there?

    1. Avatar Steve Jones says:

      Given the number of people who use mains power phones these days (like DECT phones), then I wonder how many households still have phones that can work with the 50V line power. Also, most households will have mobile phones too.

      In any event, a certain amount of power could be provided via a battery in the node. Given that the modems in most households are reliant on mains power I see little justification in keeping the BB part of the node operating in the event of a local power cut.

  4. Avatar NGA for all says:

    So drop the node and allow people to pay a final drop connection cost to establish an FTTP connection. Can you place a splitter function at the aggregation node?

    We know the power costs from VDSL, if a cabinet serving 200 homes cannot support the power cost without subsidy, why would a DP serving 4-12 customers.

    If North Yorks only paid for fibre to the DP, then I think this might change its mind on the efficacy of electronics/points of failure this deep in the network.

    1. Avatar DTMark says:

      “So drop the node and allow people to pay a final drop connection cost to establish an FTTP connection.”

      Won’t work in cabled areas.

      Cable install – free or next-to-nothing
      BT install – hundreds or thousands of pounds, there’s a cable to be laid

      The notion of looking to the future with reduced maintenance and lower TCO doesn’t seem to come easily to BT 😉

    2. Avatar FibreFred says:

      Why won’t it work in cables areas, do people not take BT phone lines in cabled areas?

    3. Avatar NGA for all says:

      @DT Mark aggregation node already exists and distribution duct exists to cabinet, also paid for, so from 2-8 poles. Where is the £000’s of pounds? The thousands of pounds is the power!

    4. Avatar DTMark says:

      In commercial terms, BT may view this as a “premium product” but in a year or two, in cabled streets, it won’t be, it will be a standard product offering.

      If BT is to compete with cable, it isn’t going to be able to charge a fortune on the basis that it needs “work”; that’s BT’s problem not the customer’s. VM can just wire in to the connection point at the end of the driveway if the house hasn’t been cabled before.

      This will require BT to have an eye to the future and put in the money now to subsidise the connections, or there wouldn’t be any/many takers. BT does not have a history of thinking ahead in that way.

  5. Avatar DTMark says:

    1. Since fibre will have to be laid from the cabinet or aggregation point to the dp, why not lay/mount the power cables at the same time alongside it? If this interferes with the ancient old copper, rip it out and have the phone side run down the broadband circuits.


    2. If you’re going to have to lay a cable for power from the premises back to the dp, why not just go for FTTP, too – it would presumably involve less work. The nodes can’t be powered by just one premise’s power supply alone for obvious reasons.

    1. Avatar FibreFred says:

      Don’t think reverse power requires a new cable does it from the premise? I thought it was powered over the existing pair?

    2. Avatar Steve Jones says:

      Quite. This just uses the existing copper line. It would, of course, require a modem that provided for the “reverse power” (although a dedicated box would work to, albeit at the expense of another box power outlet). It’s rather like those PVRs and televisions that can provide a 12V DC up the aerial cable to power a masthead amplifier. Just a bit higher voltage and wattage.

    3. Avatar DTMark says:

      How does running power over a [the same] copper or aluminium pair affect the speeds – I’d thought that the main issue with running power cables adjacent to the phone pairs was interference.

    4. Avatar Steve Jones says:


      I think you are treading in areas you aren’t very familiar with. Firstly, the power will be DC and that does not, in itself, cause any interference. What causes interference from power lines is the wide-band noise caused by a myriad of very high power loads. Things like electric motors, switching transients and all sorts of other stuff at vastly higher power levels than are being talked about here.

      A supply like this will not have any of these characteristics and will also, no doubt, be specially designed to minimise it.

      As it happens telephone wires already carry power at 50V. It’s what is used to power those phones which don’t need to be plugged into the mains.

      Noise from this source is a complete non-issue.

    5. Avatar DTMark says:

      is being the case, then, what’s the issue with installing the power cables to the node at the same time as the fibre, thus, the power “issue” is a non-issue.

    6. Avatar Steve Jones says:

      Of course it’s possible to install a cable to the node from a cabinet using DC. In fact that’s exactly how Virgin power their cabinets. They have one “power cabinet” in an area and then feed a number of local ones in the area using a low tension DC supply (I even have the evidence as the local vandals were kind enough to pull the doors off the two cabinets near my house – one contained the mains supply and a switched mode power supply).

      The problem with this approach is that you need to find room in the ducts (or between telegraph poles) for a power cable. As it will be relatively low voltage DC, and it might have to power many nodes over a long distance – perhaps a couple of km – it’s going to be a rather bulky cable with a lot of copper in it. It takes 20 amps to provide 1kw, and by the time you allow for resistive losses over, perhaps, a couple of km, then then you’ll lose a great portion of that power unless you have very thick copper indeed.

      There is a reason that we distribute power at high voltage, and it is due to this resistive loss issue. Every doubling of voltage halves the current carrying requirement and quarters the transmission losses. In short, to deliver the same power of 50V as 240V requires copper conductors with about 25 times the cross sectional areas for any given length. It’s what drove AC power distribution – the ease of changing voltages (despite Edison’s best efforts to further DC). The irony is that modern electronic allow for DC distribution (and some super-grid interconnections are actually DC).

      The other way of dealing with the issue is to use much shorter runs, and as (ideally) you want the customer-node element to be as short as possible, this makes reverse power a natural choice for low-voltage supply. A bit of current from a large number of customers over relatively short runs minimise transmission losses and you don’t have to find rooms in ducts for bulky cables. Yes, it’s complex technology, but then that’s true over the whole of broadband and, with modern electronics, it can be done cheaply when produced in large quantities.

    7. Avatar DTMark says:

      But then surely this is a no-brainer. The duct already has a lot of copper in it.

      Use that as the power cable and move the telephony onto the broadband side.

    8. Avatar FibreFred says:

      Ducts do not exist everywhere though do they? I’m sure a lot of rural folk state that quite a bit. You can’t just bury a power cable in a bit of mud.

    9. Avatar DTMark says:

      But that’s a moot point because the same issue affects the deployment of the fibre at the same time as the power: some digging is going to be needed. This being why these technologies will never be deployed on any scale without the begging bowl going back to the taxpayer again.

      Where there is overhead cable, just hang the cables off the telegraph poles. The electricity company seems to have managed to do this.

    10. Avatar Steve Jones says:


      You are absolutely correct. My copper pair is direct buried (as is the cable under the footpath). There’s a lot like that about. However, I suspect that the majority of phone cables in towns are either via ducting to a footbox (then to the premises) or ducting to a telephone pole and then to the premises by a drop wire.

      In any event, if local DC power distribution was to be used via a dedicated cable, it would require a bulky cable and that could be difficult to accommodate down an existing duct or hung from poles (which would never have been designed for the extra weight).

      In reality, the reverse power option is, in principle, extremely elegant and attractive as it would require no more cabling and only require modems equipped with the ability to deliver 50V DC (with a low incremental cost – perhaps just £5-10 per line). The difficulty is making it all work sensibly, and I would maintain that needs nodes with a base load of around the 10W mark, and definitely not exceeding 15W with something around the 2-3W per line incremental power budget.

  6. Avatar Steve Jones says:

    To put all this in perspective, it’s worth doing some calculations to see what level of power can be delivered this way and over what distance. The first thing to note is that the telephone system is (relatively) low voltage and works at a nominal 50V DC. The second thing to note is the resistance of the relatively light gauge of typical phone wire (0.5mm diameter approx). That works out at about 9.8 ohms for 100 metres, although this has to be doubled as there are two wires. So that’s 19.6 ohms per metre “round trip”. The maximum power delivered at the load for a 50m line would be 127W, dropping to 64W at 100m and just 21W at 300m. However, this is highly inefficient as it means drawing double that power at the source as half the power will be wasted in transmission losses.

    A more practical solution is to draw the same current off of each line. If we set that at (say) 100ma, it would provide 4.9W over a 50m line yet still provide 4.4W from a 300m line. The power required at each customer’s site would be 5W. At current UK retail power rates that would be of the order of £5 a year, or about 50p per month. (The node mentioned in the article consumes rather less than 3W per line). Note that the power conversion required at both the customer’s premises and the node will incur some losses, but modern conversion circuitry is now quite efficient at doing this.

    The biggest problem is possibly that the node will only become practical once a certain minimum number of lines are active. Whilst a large amount of the power requires will be proportional to the number of lines actually in use (largely to power the line amps), there will also be a moderately large fixed element to power the optical circuitry, network switches and so on. It’s that minimum power requirement that might be an issue. Clearly my nominal 100ma could be boosted to (say) 300ma which would provide 13.2W at the load over a 100m line (but only 9.7W over a 300m line). If the node’s minimum power requirement was, say, 50W then it might be possible to power it with just 5 active lines. Of course the subscribers would then be faced with another £15 per year on their electricity bills.

    It may well be this “minimum subscriber” issue that’s the biggest issue. Clearly designing nodes with the lowest possible base power requirement will be essential. Ideally you want a node capable of operating at less than 10W with a single line. That’s just about a practical amount of power to deliver over a single line of up to about 250m (that customer would find about £20 on their annual electricity bill).

    So there’s the problem. Design a node that can work off of a 10W power budget when supporting a single line and which scales up power consumption at about 2.5W per line added.

    Nb. battery backup could be provided at the customer premises or the remote node. It would be more efficient at the remote node. Of course if there is a power cut, then most likely the customer nodes would go down as well, so this may only be required for powering phones. In this case I see little need for a very substantial battery.

    1. Avatar NGA for all says:

      The minimum number of subscribers needed makes impractical for rural anyway, so why not crack on with FTT dp and permit folk to order FTTP.
      BT is seeking to withdraw PST by 2025 anyway, so this focus on G.FAST as a panacea is odd.
      Spending anothet year not delivering services in North Yorkshire is also odd when the cost of power makes VDSL expensive in places.

    2. Avatar Steve Jones says:

      BT are actually seeking to have removed from them the responsibility of delivering a POTS service. That does not mean getting rid of copper (or at least not necessarily). It just means voice service would be delivered over broadband. It’s wholly irrelevant whether the BB is delivered over copper or not.

      Of course the use of this technology would push fibre deeper into the network, so (cheaper) version of FTTPoD might well be offered.

      This is all about cost of provision and speed of delivery. The last 200m is the most expensive to deliver.

      There is a (Dutch) study around that claimed g.fast is rather less than half the cost to deliver than is FTTP (at least in cities).

    3. Avatar Steve Jones says:

      It’s also worth doing a trawl around on reverse power, and (to just check my ballpark calculations), this page mentions sub-15W for a node operating with just a single line active. I’d prefer 10W. Delivery 15W over a 250m line is possible, but it would need about 25-30W at the customer premises (10W would be closer to 15W at the customer premises – the lower the current draw, the proportionately lower the transmission losses).


    4. Avatar NGA for all says:

      With USO comes the cost recovery settlement. From memory the drop wire is £17pa of the total and assumes it is replaced every 10 years.
      Once the fibre is at the DP, – a drop wire will not be thousands.
      If you have a reference to the study that would be appreciated.
      Even with what is understood now, G.Fast does not look a great option for rural North Yorkshire. Why wait a year?

    5. Avatar Steve Jones says:

      By saying drop wire, you seem to be assuming there would be a node on every pole in rural areas. That’s most definitely not the case. I would expect that the aim is to hit the current superfast target of 24mbps, which means getting within about 800m of the premises (using VDSL2). That’s probably at the limit of RP configs (although not all lines will be 800m), but it’s just about within scope.

      This is really all about costs. In North Yorkshire it’s recognised that the BDUK coverage targets can’t be reached using FTTP budgets, so that’s where there’s a lot of emphasis on getting cost effective FttRN solutions.

      If it comes to comparing g.fast with FTTP in rural, then that’s a different matter. With more spread out communities the balance moves to FTTP at ultrafast speeds. However, I really, really don’t think that getting ultrafast (rather than superfast) to rural communities is going to be a priority. If a VDSL node can be provided within 800m much more cost-effectively, then I’m sure that will be what happens.

    6. Avatar NGA for all says:

      @Steve VDSL to 1km seems ok as long as the copper is maintained.

      But beyond that, FTT to the Dp for infill, demand led if needed, seems the best option, given the instances of poor copper seem to increase the more rural the project goes.
      Permitting folk to lay duct on their own land must also feature.

      How many ports on a pole mounted DSLAM?

    7. Avatar Steve Jones says:

      I was just being conservative with 800m. 1km will (usually) be good enough to deliver 24mbp, but it a significant portion will fall short.

      By the time you get to 1km, the line resistance will be 192 ohms. You can only deliver just over 6 watts over that distance using RP (about 13 watts at the customer premises – half gets lost in transmission). At 800m RP can deliver about 8 watts (a bit over 16 watts at the customer premises).

    8. Avatar NGA for all says:

      @Steve – we only really need to number of ports per node, the cost of power dictates whether it gets installed or not. The reverse power option needs three active users or five just in case, so we are already creating conditions where Fibre to a manifold on a DP looks a better bet in rural, given the likely condition of the copper. Expensive but not thousands.

      Thanks for the info.

      There will several hundred million appearing in the BDUK/LA investment funds, as the underspends and ‘clawback’ emerges. It would be shame if this was returned to Treasury.

    9. Avatar New_Londoner says:


      “There will several hundred million appearing in the BDUK/LA investment funds, as the underspends and ‘clawback’ emerges. It would be shame if this was returned to Treasury.”

      I’m pretty sure there is a limit on the spend per premise for BDUK, so you cannot take the usual public sector approach of spending up to the available budget irrespective of whether it gives value for money for the tax payer (thank goodness!).

      You mention underspend and clawback as if these are bad things, when in reality they are great news for those of us that are footing the bill through our taxes. In fact, I’m pretty sure the NAO cited the BDUK contracts as examples of best practice that ought to be emulated.

      It’s great if many of those living in the more rural parts of the UK end up with decent fibre broadband, but not at any cost. They don’t always have a gas main, sewerage or even, sometimes, mains water, so may have to compromise with satellite for broadband too. Not ideal perhaps, but not a catastrophe either.

    10. Avatar NGA for all says:

      @New new Londoner The goal was best in Europe, using a mixed a economy solution to do so.

      The underspends arise from inflated costs in BT’s models (see NAO 2nd report) and thus setting the bar low. This is not good.

      The lack of any visible BT capital contribution is not good either – see North Yorks report. This acts as a possible subsidy to BT sport at the expense of the nations connectivity.

      The payment of proxie costs in North Yorks and Wales rather actuals is not good either.

      What is good is that we have moved from the ‘pretence of a £100k’ cab to the identification of actual costs at aquarter of the above number before a BT contribution. This is progress.

      The mention of a £100m accrual for BDUK in BT accounts is also a step forward. There should be at least another £250m to come. Only £42m of the £100m has been identified.

      If policy makers have courage or Ofcom are minded, then the cost information may allow the nations ambition to re-emerge.

      Just as a cabinet and fibre path does not average £100k each, the cost of getting fibre deep into the distribution network will be much less than portrayed in 2009, particularly given the HOP and AGN are all in place.

      The complaint is not hot cheap it is, it is BT Groups efforts to portray costs higher than they are and failure to resource the project to ensure no one is excluded.

  7. Avatar liveinhope says:

    Drawing power from customer homes via their home gate is similar
    to DSL Ring tech which has been around for some time now from Genesis.
    I still believe this system could bridge the gap in the UK for a lot less money.

  8. Avatar JonA says:

    In round figures, 1 watt of electricity used continuously amounts to around £1/year in cost on your bill, so £170 watts is significant if it falls on one customer.

    1. Avatar DTMark says:

      I don’t see how it could fall to just one customer to pay. In a cabled street if only three customers take the BT service and one of them leaves for cable, up goes the cost for the other two. Another leaves, and up goes the cost again. Then the last one leaves. The cost per customer would be unpredictable. This could be compensated for by giving the service free of charge, I suppose, but the administrational side of this would be a nightmare.

    2. Avatar Steve Jones says:

      It won’t. For a start, it’s impractical to deliver 150W of power over a telephone line unless it’s very short due to the relatively low voltage and high resistance. Secondly, whilst a fully populate all lines driven node might require 150W, one with just a few active lines will require a fraction of that. There will, of course, be a baseload) to drive the optics, switching and so on, but as typical broadband line amps require a couple of watts or so, then the power requirement will, to a large extent, scale with the number of active lines.

      My rough calculations indicated between about £5 per year (for a fully populate node, all lines active) to, perhaps £15 per year with only a sparsely populated node. Yet to be seen what the actual specifications are, but designing a node for minimal base loading is going to be essential.

      g.fast is also designed to be very power efficient and use very low power when data rates are low.

    3. Avatar DTMark says:

      If this technology were ever deployed, Money Saving Expert and other sites like it would be telling people they can save money on their electricity by turning off their modem when they are not using it in their “Top Tips for Saving Money”, so the ability to spread the power requirement cannot be guaranteed.

    4. Avatar Neil says:

      If this technology were ever deployed, Money Saving Expert and other sites like it would be telling people they can save money on their electricity by turning off their modem when they are not using it in their “Top Tips for Saving Money”, so the ability to spread the power requirement cannot be guaranteed.”

      I do not believe he has thought of that little issue in any of his memoirs of Bt praise on this News Item.

  9. Avatar Cammy says:

    So this is how BT will reach another round of Environmental rules that will be along sooner or later. Do not burn the electric at all but hope the customer is stupid enough to pay for it + their broadband.

  10. Avatar tonyp says:

    What about solar and wind power? Too unreliable? Too expensive? In rural areas, I feel independence from AC power is important. Many of those smart warning signs at the roadside, passenger info at remote bus stops, indeed some remote railway systems are reliant on locally generated power. I shouldn’t have thought the equipment for the above systems is too power hungry compared with a LED display road sign.

  11. Avatar MikeW says:

    “so far the proposed approach of “aggregating multiple FTTRN nodes to a single power supply” doesn’t appear to have turned up (we’ve asked plenty of times and so far a working solution has not been implemented).”

    In your recent post on the G.Fast trial, you added an update from Huawei.

    In that update, Huawei blew their trumpet for supplying an aggregated power supply solution for the g.fast trial (ie forward power). They also said they were supplying the same solution for a “commercial rollout” of FTTRN.

    This might have let a cat out of a bag…

    1. Avatar NGA for all says:

      @MikeW I saw that and then concluded, the economics could not work in rural, too few subscribers per DP for reverse power, and too few subscribers over too great a distance for FTT rn, hence crack on with a demand led rollout on FTT dp with customers paying the final drop cost.

      The cabs are probably going further than expected because they are cheap, even with 50 premises you can put one 48 port card and fill it, as long those out of reach are not prevented from getting some form of affordable FOD using the spare fibres at the publicly funded aggregation node.

  12. Avatar Optimist says:

    Why not feed the equipment direct from the street electricity supply, the consumption being estimated rather than metered? This is what happens withstreet lights work.

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    Avg. Speed 38Mbps, Unlimited
    Gift: None
  • NOW TV £22.00 (*40.00)
    Avg. Speed 36Mbps, Unlimited
    Gift: None
  • Vodafone £22.00
    Avg. Speed 35Mbps, Unlimited
    Gift: None
  • Hyperoptic £22.00
    Avg. Speed 50Mbps, Unlimited
    Gift: None
Prices inc. Line Rental | View All
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