Smart metering solution for gas and electricity meters

18-02-2015 | Analog Devices | Design Applications

Analog Devices has announced that Elster has selected its ADF7241 smart metering solution for use in gas and electricity meters that Elster is designing as part of a nationwide energy-efficiency initiative sponsored by the British government. Under the Smart Metering Implementation Programme, more than 50 million smart gas and electric meters will be installed in all homes and small businesses across the U.K. by 2020. ADI’s ZigBee-based ADF7241 smart metering solution, which includes the ADF7241 transceiver and a ZigBee network protocol stack provided by Exegin Technologies Ltd., will provide the wireless connectivity for Elster’s meters. Elster is one of the world’s largest electricity, gas and water measurement and control providers.

“Elster selected ADI’s ADF7241 smart metering solution because of the performance, design flexibility and product future-proofing it provides,” said Joerg Klatte, head of smart meter solutions, Elster Gas. “ADI is providing a uniquely flexible package that allows Elster to use a ZigBee software stack for both 2.4-GHz and 868-MHz bands. In particular, it enables Elster to maximize the battery lifetime of our smart gas meters while achieving better than state-of-the-art radio performance.”

A smart meter accurately measures how much energy is consumed or generated, and communicates with the local utility company for power monitoring, billing, and other purposes. ADI’s ADF7241 solution enables smart gas, electric and water meters to provide improved customer billing accuracy and advanced power quality monitoring, which reduce operating costs for the utility company.

Leslie Mulder, president, Exegin, added: “ADI’s radio technology combined with Exegin’s ZigBee stack offers a smart metering solution that supports multiple PHY devices in a single PAN, including 868 MHz and 2.4 GHz in the United Kingdom’s dual-band radio solution. This is ideal for smart meters installed in Great Britain because it provides an agnostic approach that offers maximum flexibility with the stack operating as a coordinator, router, or end-device.”

The key component in ADI’s smart metering solution is the ADF7241 low power, 2.4GHZ RF transceiver. The integrated, low-power ADF7241 RF transceiver supports the IEEE 802.15.4 PHY protocol at 250kbps on a single chip. The transceiver’s low-power consumption of 19mA in receive mode and 21.5mA in transmit mode makes it effective for battery-powered systems, such as wireless sensor networks, automatic meter reading, industrial wireless control, wireless audio and video, consumer electronics and ZigBee applications. In combination with Exegin’s ZigBee PRO stack, the solution can be deployed once for use on multiple bands for multiple applications, says the company.

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