TMCNet:  Accent ASMgrid2 Reference Designs Ushers In Next Generation Smart Meter Capability

[October 08, 2012]

Accent ASMgrid2 Reference Designs Ushers In Next Generation Smart Meter Capability

MILAN, Italy --(Business Wire)--

Accent, a world leading semiconductor supplier of communications and metering technologies, announced today the introduction of its ASMgrid2TM Reference Designs to the company's comprehensive set of hardware and software tools. The three new designs showcase the full communication capabilities of ASMgrid2's industry-leading integration in complete system configurations required for wired and wireless smart meters. As a result, smart meter equipment vendors can directly take the proven designs to production for unprecedented bill-of-material (BOM) reduction with future-proof technology supporting the latest standards.

All additional communication system components have been incorporated as would be required in a production optimized ASMgrid2-based smart meter. The ASM201 Reference Design features an extremely cost optimized total BOM, by incorporating a ZigBee PA, SDRAM, and SPI Flash to the device's world-leading integration, which includes a high-performance ARM926EJ-STM, industry-best 10,000:1 Class 0.2 metrology solution (AEMETTM), and ZigBee radio with modem. The design provides a scalable smart meter application and communications platform with integrated home-area-network support. As a result, emerging communication standards, such as ZigBee IP and SE2.0, and additional software-based meter capabilities can be seamlessly incorporated.

For near-area-network (NAN) RF-mesh communication, Accent offers the ASM211 Reference esign, which can be directly coupled with the ASM201 Reference Design enabling a complete and powerful dual RF-mesh system. The device integrates the industry-only complete 802.15.4g radio and modem solution (Accent's SUNFXTM-4G) supporting FSK and OFDM options for up to 800 kbps performance. The design achieves a minimum total BOM in a tiny 3cm x 3cm form-factor and includes a separate PA to provide up to 30 dBm (News - Alert) (1 Watt) output power.


The ASM221 Reference Design incorporates a full PLC-based, standard-compliant smart meter communication system specifically designed to enable industry-best low-cost BOM and utilizing the device's CortexTM-M3 processor, AEMET metrology solution, embedded Flash, and SUNFX-PLC modem + AFE for G3/PRIME/P1901.2 support. Additional system functions include line driver, current transformer, and PA sections. The ASM221-based system enables significant cost savings via its function integration while also providing uncompromised flexibility and scalability needed by this market space.

"Smart Grid equipment vendors face the enormous challenge of meeting increasing performance and feature capabilities for cost sensitive smart meters. The ASMgrid2 product family meets this challenge head-on with world-leading integration and product innovation," said Federico Arcelli, CEO of Accent. "The reference designs go beyond simple proof-of-concepts but implement complete smart meter product systems to provide customers scalable, future-proof solutions with minimum risk and development effort."

Availability

The ASMgrid2 Reference Designs are available now, including schematics, layout files, and Gerber files. The ASMgrid2 product family is also supported by Accent's comprehensive software offering that includes respective MACs, protocol stacks, and reference application software.

Accent will be demonstrating its ASMgrid2 solutions at the Metering, Billing/CRM Europe Show (Booth D05) starting October 9th.

About Accent

Founded in 1993, Accent (www.accent-soc.com) is an ISO 9001:2008 certified world leading semiconductor supplier of communications and metering technologies for the Smart Grid industry. The company is backed by renowned investors such as Sofinnova Partners and Tallwood Venture Capital. Accent is a worldwide operation with offices in Italy, China, France, and United States. Accent's ASMgrid product families integrate the widest technology breadth supporting current and future Smart Grid standards to provide equipment manufacturers off-the-shelf standard products plus complete software platforms for rapid time to market and significantly lowered production costs.


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