SOURCE: Teridian Semiconductor

Teridian Semiconductor

June 16, 2009 10:00 ET

Teridian Semiconductor Takes Smart Metering Beyond Measurement

Addresses Market Demand for Future Proof Smart Meter Solutions

IRVINE, CA--(Marketwire - June 16, 2009) - The promise of the smart grid: to save energy, reduce costs and increase reliability. A lofty goal for certain, yet with advancements in digital metering technology, smart meters have helped utility companies to gain ground and get closer to this end goal. Today, Ferris wheel style meters, which have been used for more than 50 years, are being rapidly replaced by more intelligent advanced meters, known as smart meters. Smart meters can do much more, from communication links between the home and utility, to time of use measurements, remote connectivity and even failure analysis.

According to industry analyst firm Gartner, more than 150 million smart meters will be installed world-wide in the next five years with approximately 50 percent of those installations in North America. In addition, a recent report outlined the UK government's plan to smart meter enable every household by 2020. For the UK, this translates to approximately 26 million electricity and 22 million gas meters that need to be fitted by that date. A global issue, spanning North America, Europe and Asia, the smart metering of homes and businesses around the world is in full swing.

As the rapid adoption of smart meters continues to grow, meter manufacturers are facing the tough challenge to produce high volumes of advanced meters with features that will support new requirements down the road.

"The highest priority today for meter manufacturers is to take smart metering beyond measurement," said Kourosh Boutorabi, vice president and general manager, Teridian Semiconductor Metering Business Unit. "Building communications functionality into smart meters to enable consumers to monitor usage habits, empower utility companies to develop creative billing strategies and send messages to homes with peak usage warnings are some of the ways this functionality will take shape."

Teridian Semiconductor is a privately held company, based in Irvine, Calif., that has focused on developing and delivering semiconductor solutions for energy measurement, control and communication. A 35-year-old company, Teridian launched its first smart metering chipset over 20 years ago and today has shipped in excess of 25 million units, earning the largest market share of system-on-chip (SoC) metering devices which are noted for their high reliability, design efficiency, ease of integration, and cost efficiency. Teridian's metering chips are in use today by more than 40 metering manufacturers and on more than 100 metering platforms.

Teridian has built its solid standing in the smart meter market by offering a SoC solution that boasts the highest levels of accuracy. Teridian's metering products have achieved "class 0.2" status for measurement, or 0.2 percent, which puts Teridian in the "state of the art" category for measurement accuracy. In addition to unprecedented accuracy, Teridian's metering SoCs feature programmable metrology. The only commercially available programmable metrology solution on the market, Teridian's integrated circuits feature more than 60 variants of metrology code for greater flexibility and adaptability. The unique qualities of Teridian's SoCs are due in large part to the company's patented Single Converter Technology™, which delivers better than 2000:1 dynamic range and their unique 32-bit metrology engine to address the changing utility specifications.

Teridian is readying the fifth generation of its metering product family with a clear focus on communications and interconnectivity. "Interconnectivity will bridge metering technology with the consumer world," said Boutorabi. "By building in hooks to make smart meters upgradeable to support standards like ZigBee and HomePlug we're helping meter manufacturers to future proof their products."

According to Boutorabi the future in smart meters is interconnectivity with appliances in the home through specifications like ZigBee and HomePlug. In order to achieve this interconnectivity, smart meters must be able to operate on a communications network, which requires greater processing power and more memory. Teridian plans to launch the next generation of its metering SoC later this year, featuring a substantial improvement in communications processing and a reduction in the bill of materials (BOM) for meter manufacturers of at least 25 percent.

"Generation by generation we have participated in the evolution of smart meters," summarized Boutorabi. "It's an exciting time and we're on the verge of major advancements in how smart meters interact with consumers. Soon, we'll all be able to have true visibility into how we're using, and possibly misusing, energy in our homes."

Teridian's metering product line was recently awarded innovative technology of the year in the semiconductor category from the Orange County region of TechAmerica. To learn more about Teridian's metering product line please visit www.teridian.com.

About Teridian Semiconductor

Teridian Semiconductor designs, manufactures and provides engineering support for its system-on-chip integrated circuits used in the energy measurement, control and communication markets, as well as networking, and secure access systems.

Teridian's products are used in smart utility meters, as well as enterprise based solutions such as servers, power distribution units and outlet monitoring devices to measure power dissipation with high accuracy, and enable communication processing of recorded energy data. Teridian has created five generations of products, and is working with manufacturers to enable the global trend toward improving energy efficiency via a smart energy grid network.

Additional company and product information can be found at http://www.teridian.com.

Contact Information

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