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Chip tailored for non-billing electricity metering apps

Posted: 14 Oct 2010     Print Version  Bookmark and Share

Keywords:energy meter  smart plug  green energy  consumer electronics 

NXP Semiconductors N.V. unveils the EM773 energy metering IC. It claims it as the world's first 32-bit ARM-based solution designed specifically for non-billing electricity metering applications.

The EM773, according to NXP, will allow system designers to integrate energy metering functionality into a wide range of devices, making the data more accessible to consumers and industrial users. Such devices include smart plugs, smart appliances and green consumer electronics, building sub-meters, industrial sub-meters, and even data centre servers.

The EM773 is built on an ARM Cortex-M0 processor, allowing it to run complex communication tasks such as running a feature-rich wireless m-bus stack, so that data on energy use can be transmitted quickly throughout the home or business and displayed on other devices such as PCs and smartphones.

A metrology engine accessible via a simple API calculates active power in watts within one-per cent accuracy. Other data calculated are reactive power, apparent power, the power factor ratio and total harmonic distortion. An open-source plug meter application that is included with the energy metering IC demo kit transmits the kWh data to a PC.

The 32-bit Cortex-M0 platform performs up to 48MHz and provides a small footprint while at the cost of an 8- or 16-bit MCU. It only needs 32KB of flash and 8KB SRAM memory to run complex customer application software while the complete demo design further cuts the acquisition cost further.

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