The G3-PLC Alliance, the world’s leading industry alliance for powerline communication in smart grid applications, announced the industry’s first Hybrid PLC&RF certified platforms. These certificates will give both manufacturers and customers assurance that their devices have the correct implementation of the G3-PLC standard, that they are interoperable with other certified devices and meet the specified performance levels.
To date, the first certified platforms are from the member companies Microchip and STMicroelectronics. Interoperability was also demonstrated in a plugfest last year with solutions from Renesas, Semitech Semiconductor and Vertexcom Technologies. Further platforms are currently under certification and will follow soon.
Leon Vergeer, G3-PLC Alliance General Secretary, says, “After announcing the extension of the certification program to include the hybrid PLC&RF solution in March this year, we are very proud to announce the first certified platforms! The two first interoperable, certified hybrid solutions are a major milestone for the G3-PLC Hybrid roadmap and shows the commitment of the G3-PLC members, investing time and resources for the success of this technology. This is a great achievement for all the people involved! Therefore, I want to congratulate STMicroelectronics and Microchip for their hybrid certification and thank our test laboratories LANPARK (France) and TÜV (Japan) for their developments and support! More chipsets and products from these and other members will follow soon!”
The hybrid protocol stack is built using open standards IEEE 802.15.4-2015 in addition to the existing G3-PLC protocol. Each device in the mesh network can use PLC as well as RF for the communication. Depending on the actual conditions in the field, messages between two devices are sent over the ‘best’ available channel. The channel selection for each link in the network is done automatically and adjusted dynamically. This way, the hybrid profile provides an efficient and cost-effective solution for many applications and opens up new use cases as it extends the connectivity of G3-PLC to RF-only devices. The G3-PLC Hybrid profile is fully compatible and interoperable with existing G3-PLC implementations, so it is possible to mix hybrid and non-hybrid nodes.
“We are convinced from the very first day G3-PLC Hybrid technology will have a bright future and we are working on it to make it happen with several customers. Getting those certificates is a great achievement for the team and we are proud to be with the first manufacturers to be certified!” said Marc Delandre – Chairman of G3-PLC Alliance.
The certification process is open for all current and future members of the G3-PLC Alliance. Certification covers chipsets and a wide range of G3-PLC manufactured by the members of the G3-PLC Alliance. The G3-PLC Certification Program covers conformance, interoperability and performance testing. Products that have been awarded with the G3-PLC Certificate are conform to the G3-PLC specifications, are interoperable with other G3-PLC certified devices and fulfill defined performance requirements.
The G3-PLC Alliance has accredited two experienced laboratories to run the certifications tests, LANPARK and TÜV Rheinland:
- LANPARK is a French company, certification testing is performed in their facilities located in Tauxigny, France.
- TÜV Rheinland is a German company with worldwide offices. TÜV Rheinland performs the certification testing in their facilities in Yokohama, Japan.
G3-PLC is a proven Powerline Communication technology for smart grids used worldwide and offering the lowest total cost of ownership and independency on telco operators. G3-PLC facilitates high-speed, highly-reliable, long-range communication over the existing powerline grid. It is standardized under ITU-T G.9903 and with its support of IPv6, G3-PLC will support powerline communications well into the future.
About the G3-PLC Alliance
The G3-PLC Alliance is a consortium created in 2011 to standardize and promote G3-PLC technology globally. Today, the G3-PLC Alliance counts more than 90 members that are international key stakeholders of the smart grid ecosystem, including utilities, semiconductor companies, equipment manufacturers and industrial companies. Together, they support, promote and implement the G3-PLC technology and established an industrial certification program to guarantee the interoperability of devices from different manufacturers.