A new hybrid gateway with G.hn backhaul unveiled by MaxLinear and Microchip Technology for versatile smart grid use cases

5th December 2022
Beth Floyd

Electric utilities can now provide real-time data on energy power consumption with Hybrid Gateways integrating G.hn Powerline (PLC) technology as broadband backhaul for a complete range of proven technologies, according to evidence from MaxLinear and Microchip Technology.

This Proof of Concept (PoC) has been jointly developed by HomeGrid Forum member MaxLinear, a provider of multi-gigabit connectivity solutions, and Microchip Technology, a provider of smart, connected, and secure embedded control solutions. Both parties have compiled a highly integrated hybrid solution with several transceivers, able to support three major use cases of Smart Grid deployments:

  • Backhaul G.hn PLC Broadband + Fronthaul PRIME/G3 PLC-NarrowBand
  • Backhaul G.hn PLC Broadband + Fronthaul PRIME/G3 Hybrid (PLC-NarrowBand and RF)
  • Backhaul G.hn PLC Broadband + Fronthaul Zigbee

This initiative comes as part of the continuous drive by HomeGrid Forum ecosystem to develop game-changing G.hn-based infrastructure for the future of Smart Grids and Smart Cities.

HomeGrid Forum President Livia Rosu, expanded on the evidence: “since G.hn has been recognised by the Smart Grid industry as one of the most robust and future-proof technologies, our members have joined their research and development forces to launch innovative solutions designed to accelerate smart grid infrastructure deployments. The Hybrid Gateway PoC highlights the versatile networking capabilities of G.hn technology for supporting an extended coverage and capitalising on previously installed smart metres nodes”.

Rod Drake, Vice President of Microchip’s MCU32 business unit said: “The PoC platform provides multiple transceiver solutions including PRIME Narrowband, G3-PLC Narrowband, RF interface, Zigbee and G.hn PLC Broadband backhaul to ensure a fast, real-time communication between the smart metres and the central office of the electric utilities. The modular design of the Hybrid Gateway offers resourceful interfaces for all network segments as needed.”

The Hybrid Gateway is backwards compatible with G.hn-only, PRIME-only, G3-PLC-only, ZigBee-only, and RF-only devices of the electrical grid, offering extended network coverage for already deployed infrastructure that needs an accelerated network upgrade.

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