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DrQuine
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ARPA-E and Discrete Series Reactors
DrQuine   9/1/2013 8:56:19 PM
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In February 2012, 99 "discrete series reactors" were installed on the Tennessee Valley Authority 161 kilowatt transmissions lines east of Knoxville according to news reports.  They were part of an experiment to see whether a "Smart Wire Grid" (Oakland) could divert current from overloaded lines to under-utilized lines. If so, the power grid was expected to be able to work at a higher efficiency and better adapt to distributed power users and providers. The Department of Energy Advanced Research Projects Administration (ARPA-E) sponsored project went live a year and a half ago. Have there been any results or insights gained? These man portable distributed devices certainly look a lot smaller and practical than the massive "shunt reactor" that I saw moved through and installed in western Connecticut 2 years ago. Overall, how are the electric companies doing in this space?



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As data rates begin to move beyond 25 Gbps channels, new problems arise. Getting to 50 Gbps channels might not be possible with the traditional NRZ (2-level) signaling. PAM4 lets data rates double with only a small increase in channel bandwidth by sending two bits per symbol. But, it brings new measurement and analysis problems. Signal integrity sage Ransom Stephens will explain how PAM4 differs from NRZ and what to expect in design, measurement, and signal analysis.

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