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WiMAX Forum Spearheads Efforts to Advance Smart Grid Architecture


WiGRID™ Certification Program Drives Interoperability Standards for Utility Networking Products


San Antonio, TX – DistribuTECH – January 28, 2014 – The WiMAX Forum®, a global body that promotes the compatibility and interoperability of broadband wireless products based upon IEEE Standard 802.16, is proud to announce its first member companies to achieve WiGRID™ certification – further advancing the adoption of WiMAX technology, which addresses Utility Smart Grid connectivity requirements.

Through a collaborative effort, three equipment vendors have successfully achieved certification status, including Cisco Systems, GE Digital Energy, and Siemens. The initiative was led by the WiMAX Forum’s Smart Energy Working Group, composed of technical representatives from major electric power utilities, WiMAX vendors and industry experts. Following the success of yesterday’s WiGRID™ event at DistribuTECH, the WiMAX Forum continues to provide opportunities to support the Smart Grid community in the deployment of effective and affordable WiMAX networks.

The certification process requires that each product be validated through a rigorous series of independent lab tests conducted by a third party proctor. Certification is based on the WiGRID™ profile, drafted by the Utility Industry to test against a number of key features that optimize IEEE 802.16 standards for a range of utility applications and use cases. The WiGRID profile signals the endorsement of manufacturers to make cost-effective, standardized and interoperable WiMAX equipment for Field Area Networks.

“WiGRID Certification is a milestone for the WiMAX Forum and the Utility Industry,” said Eugene Crozier, of Powertech Labs and Chair of the WiMAX Forum’s Smart Energy Working Group. “Wireless technology is a crucial part of Smart Grid infrastructure, and this certification will guarantee that our products are in fact interoperable, which will help create better and more competitive products.”

WiGRID PlugFest events, held annually, have enabled vendors to conduct hands-on testing of their equipment prior to seeking certification, testing the interoperability of their products across multiple frequency bands. Vendors are able to test features such as latency, operating range and uplink support.

“The WiMAX Forum has demonstrated the strength of the WiMAX ecosystem as it continues to be a viable choice for next generation smart grid networks,” said Lee Lipes, Vice Chair of the WiMAX Forum’s Smart Energy Working Group and Director of Product Management at Siemens. “WiGRID benefits the utility industry by providing an important benchmark for networking technology.”

Craig Tedrow, Vice Chair of the WiMAX Forum’s Smart Energy Working Group and Product Architect at GE, said, “Through solid teamwork in the past few months, the Forum’s Smart Energy Working Group was able to raise the bar for the upcoming and future WiGRID events.”

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About the WiMAX Forum

The WiMAX Forum is an industry-led, not-for-profit organization that certifies and promotes the compatibility and interoperability of broadband wireless products based upon IEEE Standard 802.16. The WiMAX Forum’s primary goal is to accelerate the adoption, deployment and expansion of WiMAX technologies across the globe while facilitating roaming agreements, sharing best practices within our membership and certifying products. WiMAX Forum Certified® products are interoperable and support broadband fixed, nomadic, portable and mobile services. The WiMAX Forum works closely with service providers and regulators to ensure that WiMAX Forum Certified systems meet customer and government requirements. For more information, visit