Power line telecommunications option in rural KwaZulu- Natal.
Power Line Communications (PLC) is a recent and rapidly evolving technology, aiming at the utilization of the electricity power lines for the transmission of data. PLC technology opens up new opportunities for the mass provision of local, last-mile access at a reasonable cost. PLC can furthermore provide a multitude of new Information Society services - both in the energy and telecom domains - to residential and commercial users that are difficult or costly to implement through other technologies. PLC technology has a number of important strengths: it offers a permanent on-line connection as well as symmetric, two-way communication; it has good performance, very good geographical coverage, and is relatively cheap because most of the infrastructure is already in place. Currently, the main weaknesses of PLC technology are that it is still in the developmental stage. It is likely not to be the only one: rather, it will be part of a range of complementary technologies, because each technology yields a different compromise between bandwidth, reach, noise immunity, and cost. This report starts by looking at access technologies and describing the power line as a communication medium and then frequency response and noise characteristics. A transmission technique (OFDM) that avoids power line noise and uses the common modulation formats is also explained. The results of this work shows that the power line technology can be used as a communication channel for urban areas and fast developing rural areas. This is because of the bandwidth is uses. A proposed future research for slow developing rural areas is found in the conclusion.