The datacom team is a.o. responsible for deployment of communication technologies such as newer IP/MPLS technology as well as more legacy PDH, SDH technologies. In the context of these deployments, the Datacom Architect service consists of following tasks:
Datacom network operations - Level 3 support:
- Expert support in the analysis of complex error situations, and if necessary contact the equipment supplier for further support.
- Technical validation of network changes.
- Implementation of configuration changes.
- Validation of firmware upgrades and network management system upgrades.
- Helping to integrate new concepts, work methods, templates, configuration manuals, etc. within Datacom field operations and Datacom helpdesk through proper documentation, technical workshops and feedback sessions.
Datacom network improvement support:
- Definition of measures to avoid error situations in future.
- Optimization of the network and network operations by making proposals internally and/or to the equipment suppliers.
- Evaluate comments and improvement proposals from the field.
When applicable, Infrastructure Projects – Technical support during preparation phase:
- Be the Datacom Architect representative during meetings with Infrastructure.
- In case of network extensions, perform an audit of the possible physical carriers, perform a network architecture study, and once agreed, modify the internal design documentation accordingly.
- Document Datacom validated technical solutions.
- Review project notes
- In case of scope change, analyze the impact on the Datacom solution.
- Contribute to continuous improvement of work methods, templates, documentation (participate in experience feedback, identify best practices, ...
When applicable, Datacom project support:
- Drafting of technical specifications
- Technical evaluation of the responses.
- Establishing and executing validation test plans.
- Determine the optimal architecture.
- Supervise and technically guide field operations staff in the implementation of new technologies through technical workshops, procedures, and feedback sessions.
- Prepare planning for the rollout of new technologies in collaboration with Datacom field operations, Datacom project engineers, and other departments.
- Do this in close collaboration with other Datacom architects.
The Datacom department is in charge of:
- the datacom transport network for the IP networks and IT networks in general. The company has an extensive network of fibre and copper cables, supplemented by rented connections. The technologies in use include PDH, SDH, DWDM, FC and IP/MPLS, the IP/Ethernet/WiFi networks used for telephony and core business needs (office network, real-time network, …) in all of it's administrative sites, data centres, dispatching offices, …
- direct IP connections with other electricity transport, distribution and generation utilities,
- Internet connections,
- the protection and securing of the networks with firewalls, DMZs (Demilitarised Zones), VPN concentrators, and similar,
- the networks connecting high-voltage substations and data centres for purposes of remote surveillance, telephony, meter readings, consulting disturbance recorders, ... These networks are also used for communication between the electrical protection devices at different stations. Work has already begun to migrate these networks from TDM technology (PDH, SDH) to packet-switched technology (Ethernet, IP, MPLS),
- connections with other TSOs for remote surveillance, remote protection, and telephony.