Neuron releases dual-frequency and dual-protocol PRIME Gateway
Neuron announces the general availability of PRIME eco-system’s first dual-frequency Gateway, nFG. The nFG is a first-of-its-kind product that can attach to a PRIME DC/Gateway in frequency band, say f1 and connect PRIME smart meters operating in a totally different frequency band, say f2.
The device can transmit and receive on both bands f1 and f2 concurrently.
In addition to frequency translation, the nFG can be configured to translate PRIME v1.4 to legacy PRIME v1.3 and vice-versa. With 10s of millions of PRIME v1.3 meters in the field, Utilities will not need to plan instantaneous replacement of all smart meters in a substation when upgrading their DC/Gateway to PRIME v1.4. nFG devices in such networks can translate from FCC-band PRIME v1.4 DC/Gateway to CENELEC A-band PRIME v1.3 smart meters. Meters and DC/Gateway stay completely transparent to this intermediate frequency and/or protocol translation.
This novel concept also allows to create islands of different frequencies in networks that suffer from frequency-selective noise, as is most often the case in CENELEC A-bands. Traditional approach in such cases is to send field analysis teams to locate noise source(s) which is both time-consuming and expensive. A combination of two nFG devices can effectively create an overlay network in an orthogonal frequency, therefore rendering the noise -source in CENELEC A-band totally irrelevant. One nFG can up-translate to a different band while the second nFG can down-translate back to original band.
“We have tried the nFG in several substations across all 5 Regions of our Spanish grid. The field teams at each location have reported a remarkable increase in meter reading success, therefore confirming the reliability of communication brought about by the nFG. All of this without changing any specific configuration on DC or Meter”, said Inigo Berganza, Head of PRIME, Iberdrola
“nFG furthers Neuron’s commitment to technical excellence through continued introduction of products and solutions that solve real-world use-cases in Utility communications. We are very excited to see the scope of nFG’s use: extending all the way from reliability improvement tool to an effective means for easy transition to PRIME v1.4”, said Andreas Brunschweiler, Head of R&D, Neuron.