Single chip hybrid PLC and LoRa wireless platform for smart applications

04 May 2016

Semtech announced its new EV8600 dual modem (PLC+RF System-on-Chip) with integrated LoRa wireless RF technology.

The Semtech EV8600 is a fully integrated PLC and LoRa modem for smart grid, smart metering and IoT applications. The advanced features of the EV8600 help reduce network operational costs of Advance Metering Infrastructures (AMI) by up to 50 percent. In addition, the revolutionary EV8600 modem enables seamless LoRa gateway network deployment of Internet of Things (IoT) solutions for smart city and industrial automation. 

By offering both a Power Line Communications (PLC) modem operating at 10-500KHZ and a Radio Frequency (RF) modem operating in the range of 142-1050MHz, Semtech’s industry-leading EV8600 enables virtually 100 percent connectivity coverage with a single chip. The EV8600 also offers a LoRa fallback mode in the event of a complete network outage caused by a natural disaster or other unforeseen events.

Reza Mirkhani, Vice President of Smart Grid Products for Semtech’s Wireless and Sensing Product Group, said the integration of Semtech LoRa technology in the EV8600 enables critical access for network operators and provides further reliability in network operations. It helps eliminate the ‘1 percent Problem’ in AMI networks, where the cost of reaching the 1 percent Hard-to-Reach Nodes can account for as much as 50 percent of the entire AMI network operational cost. AMI networks can already be seen migrating to PLC+RF Dual PHY architectures to achieve as close to 100 percent coverage as possible. The addition of LoRa to EV8600 enables each end node to become a LoRa gateway, servicing LoRa-based devices and back hauling their data over the PLC network. Also, the LoRaWAN network protocol allows for seamless interoperability among smart things across the network.

To simplify the design effort, Semtech’s LoRa-enabled EV8600 series performs all bridging/routing algorithms between the two internal modems and has embedded dual image flash memory. The implementation of LoRa features into the new Semtech’s EV8600 is accompanied by the addition of Wireless M-BUS protocol for sub-metering applications.


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