PPC Launches LTE-BPL Headend 4R to Enable BPL and LTE Communications for Utilities and Meter Manufacturers

Founded in 2001, Power Plus Communications (PPC) is a pioneer of broadband powerline (BPL) technology. PPC was the first company to gain certification for its smart meter gateway - a device to collect and protect smart meter data. The company has deep knowledge and expertise based on a portfolio of successful projects carried out in close partnership with world-renowned meter manufacturers, utilities and distribution network operators. PPC’s BPL systems are in operation in power networks throughout Europe, the Middle East and Africa.

Business Challenge

Utilities and network operators are continuing their efforts to improve and connect their infrastructure to create smart grids – a serious and expensive challenge in organizations that are extremely capital intensive and home to a myriad of legacy equipment.

Sierra Wireless AirPrime® Solution

To address this challenge, hybrid solutions are needed. Broadband powerline (BPL) technology complements cellular communications to enable efficient data transmission. Hard-to-reach devices are connected to IP-based (IPv4/v6) BPL modems. Alternately, sensors can be connected via serial interfaces (e.g. W-M-Bus or RS485 readout).

For the wireless component of the LTE-BPL Headend, PPC explored options with a variety of vendors, and selected the WP Series modules from Sierra Wireless, which combine LTE functionality, a processor and a Linux® distribution framework (Legato®). Combining a Sierra Wireless module with PPC’s BPL technology in a single device, the LTE-BPL Headend, PPC has developed a hybrid solution that uses the combined power of both technologies to achieve reliable broadband data transmission, even in the most challenging environments.

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