US utility TXU Electric Delivery and CURRENT Communications Group LLC have teamed to transform TXU Electric Delivery’s power distribution network into the US’s first broadband-enabled smart grid. CURRENT will design, build and operate the BPL network, which will cover the majority of the utility’s service area – including some two million homes and businesses.

The modernised grid will enhance the utility’s ability to deliver top-decile electric service reliability, and will provide the potential for additional products and services from retail electricity providers that will enable customers to manage their electricity usage and costs. The CURRENT BPL network solution incorporates advanced digital communication and computing capabilities that provide real-time monitoring, allowing TXU to increase network reliability and power quality; prevent, detect and restore customer outages more effectively; and implement AMR more efficiently. Deployment is expected to begin some time in 2006.