Transco tests use of power lines for high speed internet to connect public schools


Posted at Jan 11 2022 02:36 PM

The Line of Duty. Line-men work on cleaning powerlines. Jonathan Cellona, ABS-CBN News/File
The Line of Duty. Line-men work on cleaning powerlines. Jonathan Cellona, ABS-CBN News/File

MANILA - The National Transmission Corp has been testing an emerging technology that would allow the use of existing power lines to help provide high speed internet to public schools, the Department of Finance said.

Under Project Lightning, Transco conducted technology scanning and development on emerging ICT technologies for resilient power grids from 2018 to 2021, the DOF said in a statement. 

Transco's Project Lightning will enable the transfer of large amounts of data at extremely high speeds using existing power lines without the need for installation of new towers or laying of fiber optic cables, Transco President and CEO Melvin Matibag said in a report to the DOF.

The emerging ICT technologies will enable the Department of Education's Public Education Network program to use existing power line infrastructure to provide connectivity, the DOF said, citing a Transco report.

The Public Education Network-Communications Infrastructure for Learning (PEN-CIL) project seeks to aid DepEd's internet connectivity in public schools during the new normal, the statement said. 

Transco will design, develop and operate PEN-CIL "with the goal of making the country’s basic education system more resilient especially in times of calamities and crises."

For the project, electric cooperatives nationwide will work together by lending the government their power lines for the high-speed internet connection, the DOF said.

Rural areas left out by telcos will be prioritized, it added.

According to Transco's report, the project will be tests at the Baguio Teacher's Camp. 

“The PEN-CIL project will maximize the utilization of TransCo assets and utilize the electric cooperatives’ assets," Matibag said.

"This will translate into new revenues for Transco when it performs the function of administrator and system operator of the DepEd’s PEN-CIL while it is able to support the government’s development objectives,” he added. 

Finance Secretary Carlo Dominguez, who also chairs the board of directors of Transco commended the progress of the project.


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