French Broad Electric Membership Corporation (FBEMC) currently serves over 35,000 customers in Western North Carolina and Eastern Tennessee. Its service area is four Western North Carolina counties and two Eastern Tennessee counties in which we provide electricity. FBEMC is based in Marshall, North Carolina [1, 2].
The utility is serving customers in North Carolina with whom it can communicate via two whip antennas mounted on existing SCADA towers [1, 2]. The AMI project with TUNet was implemented in 2 phases to provide advanced metering as well as real-time outage management. French Broad started its implementation of TUNet® in October 2004. TUNet’s wide area network leverages the 220 MHz frequency, giving the Coop exceptional radio range and penetration across uneven countryside. The system consists of a fixed wireless network that supports advanced metering, instant outage reporting, remote disconnect/ reconnect, and can serve as the backbone network for future applications and multi-utility capabilities .