Utility institutions today are operating globally and relying on substation automation systems to have a secured and reliable solution for controlling and monitoring status of the substations and grids. Historically, substation automation structures involve multiple proprietary protocols which consist of numerous remote thermal units, PLCs, HMIs and plenty of computing systems to be wired together. This implementation usually results in heavy hardware investment, high engineering development time and high maintenance costs due to wiring redundancy and customized communication protocols. In fact, there could be compatibility issues among the automation devices from different vendors.

IEC 61850

IEC 61850 was introduced to offer power companies a globally standardized communication protocol for substations automation systems. The standard comes with a promise to provide open-architecture, flexibility, interoperability, future-proof and reduced wiring costs while eliminating possible compatibility issues among devices from various suppliers.


The standard of IEC 61850 has shortened engineering development time and cost, by defining the software and hardware requirements. There are already mainstream grid-oriented software programs like GOOSE and GSSE, deployed by many power companies in the world. In terms of hardware requirements, system performance and environmental reliability are two major considerations to function as a status-monitoring gateway in harsh environments like grids and substations. Other factors include input/output designs, ESD/surge protections and networking connectivity.

  • High computational power
  • Wide operating temperature
  • IEC 61850 compliance
  • Rich LAN ports
  • Protected serial COM I/O
  • High availability and reliability
  • Future-proof Scalability

Lanner’s Robust, Rich I/O and High-Processing Communication Platform

Lanner’s LEC-3231 is the optimal substation gateway solution designed with industrial-grade robustness, rich I/O options, and high CPU performance for status monitoring and message filtering. The rugged, fanless rackmount industrial computer is driven by processor choices of Intel Celeron 847E, Core i3-3217UE or Core i7-3517UE, depending on the SKU selected, and also supports up to 10 isolated COM ports, 8 magnet isolated LAN ports, and redundant power supplies. To function as a safe and secured platform, LEC-3231 is compliant with IEC-61850-3 standard and supports wide operating temperature of -40 to 70°C for substation automation applications.

LEC-3231 is driven by Intel Celeron 847E, Core i3-3217UE or Core i7-3517UE CPU (codenamed Ivy Bridge/Sandy Bridge) to deliver high-performance for automation systems to run on grid-messaging software like GOOSE or GSSE. For low power consumption, the SKU with Intel Celeron 847E is the ideal choice, whereas the models with Core i3/Core-i7 are designed for high-performance boost, virtualization technologies and security instruction sets.

As a highly reliable communication gateway in substation automation, LEC-3231 is compliant with IEC 61850-3 and supports wide operating temperature from -40 to 70℃, enabling the device to work under harsh environments. In addition, LEC-3231 provides the high-availability of redundant power supplies with particular options: 36 to 48 Vdc or 90 to 246 Vdc/100-300 Vdc, to deliver the sufficient power power in harsh environments.

In terms of the rich I/O design, the fanless box PC comes with two DB-9 COM ports and one 2x2x5 terminal block to provide RS-232/422/485 functionalities for connections with other industrial equipment. The serial I/Os are coated with 15KV ESD Protection. Regarding network connectivity, LEC-3231 supports up to 8 magnetic isolated LAN ports to enable connections with other networked devices for local and remote communications.

For future-proof scalability, LEC-3231 can be added with more I/O modules to connect with more automation devices. LEC-3231 supports a wide range of serial port and LAN port modules to further expand its I/O connectivity. The I/O modules are to serve customizable demands for specific applications.

LEC-3231 is also applicable in IED and SCADA communication gateways.

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