Building real Smart Metering and Smart Grid networks is very expensive and time-consuming and also it is impossible to install different technologies in the same environment only for comparison. Therefore, simulation and experimental pilot measurements are an easy, economical, and time-affordable solution for a first comparison and evaluation of different technologies and solutions. The local area networks (LAN) are the core of Smart Metering and Smart Grid networks. The two predominant technologies are mostly sufficient for LAN networks, Power Line Communication (PLC), and radio frequency (RF) solutions. For PLC it is hard to allow prediction of the behaviour. Performance assessment for point-to-point connection is easy, but for complex PLC networks with repeaters it is quite expensive. Therefore, a simulation is an easy, fast, and cheap solution for understanding the grid configuration, influence of particular topological components, and performance possibilities. Simulation results can, thus, provide material for the design of a telecommunication infrastructure for Smart Metering. This paper presents results of such a simulation study. It is based on realistic PLC channel model implementation in Network Simulator 3, our modification and extension of this implementation for our use case scenario. It uses Shannon’s formula to calculate theoretical maximum channel capacity. In particular, it provides channel capacity and achievable distances of broadband PLC (BB-PLC). In this article we also exploit our novel idea of simple performance assessment of broadband PLC communication via simulation. It is supposed to be used to understand, evaluate, and test the grid configuration before deployment.
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