I wonder what they use for the below ground sensors... On-Ramp's technology is for M2M communication ULP technology that appears to have an advantage in managing the PHY layer. They must have partnered with a sensor provider that specializes in (GPR) ground penetrating radar-based technology. I remember reading couple of years ago on a technology that used GPR to sense an inch below surface of a concrete layer with 70% receive power from free space @5.xGHz.
Earlier this year at one of the UC Berkeley events, there was a healthy discussion of need for this technology from a PG&E rep. Perhaps On-Ramp Wireless is a company to watch?
Dr. MP Divakar
It is interesting to see such project. Power Grid monitoring is a very important and yet difficult task. Old school monitoring method has been used for long time and it is great to see new ideas flowing around. Maybe this ULP technology is so sexy that people can't refuse. Usually people the power grid industry are so reluctant to change as they just want well proven solution and can't take mush risk.