Meter communication modules are applied to Advanced Metering Infrastructure (AMI). The module conveys data from meters to concentrators and then transmit to the Head End System (HES).
Most CLOU AMI meters have exchangeable communication modules.
Beside of the standard security features like authentication, signing and encryption, an exchange of a communication module will be logged in the meter-internal logbook.
It leads also to an AMI-system notification and can lead to a meter disconnection. Don’t play when you are no authorized field engineer.
The communication module slots are sealed for easy additional visual inspection.
CLOU energy meters equip communication modules like GPRS (2G), 3G, 4G, BPLC (power line communication), G3-PLC and RF (radio frequency).
With copious technology experience, CLOU has used a large scale of communication modules on site.
Several core communication modules are introduced as below.
CL4507R1 RF-Mesh module
The CL4507R1 RF-Mesh module works in Sub 1 GHz frequency for personal area network (PAN).
The module is supported in six LoW PAN stacks, the physical layer and the medium access control layer (MAC) based on IEEE802.15.4g/e standard.
The module can be used to enable a solution for the Internet of Things. It employs the standards-based Routing Protocol for Lossy and Low-Power Networks (RPL) and is an IPv6-compliant implementation that forms a foundation for interconnected embedded systems.
CL4507G1 GPRS Module
The CL4507G1 GPRS module is used for GSM or GPRS typed industrial module for cellular network, which supports several GPRS or GSM communications.
CL4507G1 4G Module
The CL4507G1 4G module is a series of GSM wireless communication module with receive diversity.
It provides data connectivity on LTE-FDD, LTE-TDD, DC-HSDPA, HSPA+, HSDPA, HSUPA, WCDMA and GPRS networks.
It also provides GNSS and voice functionality for customers’ specific application. CL4507G1 is adapted to CL710K24 single phase meters and CL730S24 three phase meters.
CL4507G1 3G Module
The CL4507G1 3G module is used for WCDMA typed industrial module for cellular network, which supports several HSPA+, UMTS and GPRS communications.
The modem switches between the operating modes (2G and 3G) are automatically based on the best network coverage.
CL4507P1 G3-PLC Module
The CL4507P1 G3-PLC module innovated by CLOU is a multi-subcarrier communication module for high-speed narrowband power line, of which the physical layer based on the OFDM modulation scheme. It meets international standards (ITU-T G.9903).
Plug and Play
All exchangeable CLOU communication modules are Plug and Play.
Plug and Play (PnP) enables the energy meter to adapt to hardware changes without intervention by the meter installer. The field engineer can change communication devices without having to do manual configuration, and without dedicated knowledge of the meter hard- and firmware.
Used Communication Abbreviations
- PLC: Power Line Communication
- GSM: Global System of Mobile
- GPRS: General Packet Radio Services
- LTE-FDD: Long-Term Evolution Frequency Division Duplex
- LTE-TDD: Long-Term Evolution Time Division Duplex
- HSDPA: High-Speed Downlink Packet Access
- DC-HSDPA: Dual Channel High-Speed Downlink Packet Access
- HSPA+: High-Speed Packet Access +
- HSUPA: High-Speed Uplink Packet Access
- WCDWA: Wideband Code Division Multiple Access
- GNSS: Global Navigation Satellite System
- UMTS: Universal Mobile Telecommunication System
- OFDM: Orthogonal Frequency-division Multiplexing
The innovation and development of meter communication modules still has a great potential as communication technologies like 5G update so quickly.
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Editor's note: This article was originally published in November 2021 and has been updated for comprehensiveness.