A donation from Overland Park-based FishNet Security will enable researchers in Kansas State University’s Smart Grid Laboratory to study ways to improve electrical systems.
FishNet Security, North America’s largest information security provider, will donate, integrate and manage software-defined networking equipment at the university’s Burns & McDonnell Smart Grid Laboratory.
As a result of the gift, the laboratory will be one of the first facilities to test the ways that emerging software-defined networking technology can be used to more efficiently manage, distribute, use and secure electrical power.
The laboratory, which was dedicated in October 2012, includes power grid and network communication equipment and is part of the university’s department of electrical and computer engineering. Located in Rathbone Hall, the laboratory supports undergraduate and graduate student projects and will boost internship and future employment opportunities for students.
The increase in intelligent devices on power grids has increased communications traffic on electrical smart grids.
This increase can create delays, security vulnerabilities and breaches, data losses, dropped packets, network overloads, equipment failures and subsequent power losses.
Software-defined networking shows promise in countering these problems because of its ability to control traffic outside the typical switch fabric commonly used today.