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The current centrally controlled power grid is undergoing a drastic change in order to deal with increasingly diversified challenges, including environment and infrastructure. The next-generation power grid, known as the smart grid, will be realized with proactive usage of state-of-the-art technologies in the areas of sensing, communications, control, computing, and information technology. In a smart power grid, an efficient and reliable communication architecture plays a crucial role in improving efficiency, sustainability, and stability. In this paper, the authors first identify the fundamental challenges in the data communications for the smart grid and introduce the ongoing standardization effort in the industry.
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