STMicroelectronics First to Announce Certified Chipset for G3-PLC Hybrid Powerline and Wireless Communication – EEJournal

Turnkey solution based on the proven ST8500 programmable multi-protocol SoC and RF transceiver with under GHz S2-LP with ultra low power

Geneva, 31 May 2021 – STMicroelectronics’ ST8500 and S2-LP the chipset became the first to be certified in accordance with the G3-PLC hybrid communication standard, which defines seamless connectivity via power lines and wireless media.

The G3-PLC Hybrid specification allows smart grid, smart city, industrial and IoT equipment to choose the best available wireless or electrically conductive channel at any time, automatically and dynamically, according to network conditions. This allows for superior coverage, reliability and scalability, while allowing the system to operate cost-effectively and enabling new applications.

One of the world’s first hybrid-ready solutions, ST demonstrates its ST8500 hybrid chipset at the G3-PLC Alliance plugfest for interoperability in 2020. The chipset is now the first to complete the latest G3-PLC certification scheme released in March. 2021, which includes hybrid profile tests.

The certified chipset combines the ST8500 programmable multi-protocol communication system for chip power (SoC) and STLD1 linear driver with the company’s S2-LP radio with low power below GHz. The programmability of the SoC allows for a software-defined implementation capable of supporting a wide portfolio of power line protocol stacks in global bands such as CENELEC and FCC.

The ST8500 power line communication SoC platform is widely used in intelligent metering smart industrial and infrastructure applications. The new turnkey ST Hybrid solution has already been selected by key stakeholders in the smart grid market. In addition, the ST hardware and firmware solution was selected to power the official testing equipment for G3-PLC Alliance RF certification.

The ST8500 SoC is packaged as 7 mm x 7 mm x 1 mm QFN56. STLD1 and S2-LP are packaged as 4 mm x 4 mm x 1 mm QFN24. All devices are in full production. Please contact your local ST sales office for pricing information and sample requests.

Based on 6LowPAN and IPv6 and combining RF connectivity with the native G3-PLC protocol stack, the ST8500 SoC consumes less than 100mW in receive mode, providing ultra-low power performance according to the latest specifications to reduce minimum network load imposed by new smart meters. It contains a high – performance DSP for real – time protocol processing and HAND® Cortex®-M4F core for top layer processing and system management. Both the DSP and ARM cores have their own code and SRAM data on the chip, while peripherals, including a 128/256-bit AES cryptographic engine, are integrated to meet the needs of smart power applications. The analog front end (AFE) for connection to the STLD1 linear driver is also integrated. STLD1 communicates reliably, even through noisy power cables and low impedance, high driveability and high linearity.

The S2-LP is a high-performance ultra-low power RF transceiver designed for RF wireless applications in the 1GHz band. It is designed to operate in both unlicensed ISM and SRD bands at 433, 512, 868 and 920 MHz and can be programmed to operate on additional frequencies in 413-479 MHz, 452-527 MHz, 826- Bands 958 MHz and 904-1055 MHz. The transceiver allows an RF connection budget greater than 140 dB for long communication bands and complies with radio equipment regulations in territories around the world, including Europe, North America, China and Japan. ST offers integrated balun / filter chips for the S2-LP, which simplify antenna connection schemes and save PCB space in limited applications.

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