Power Line Communications

Semtech Power Line Communications (PLC) products enable communications via low-voltage and medium-voltage power lines. Power line communications has long been a favorite application for utility companies because it allows them to reliably move data over an infrastructure that they own and control. One of the main benefits of PLC to utilities is that it efficiently addresses their communications needs across a vast array of applications (metering, substation monitoring, load control and load shedding, home energy management, etc.) all focused on collectively addressing their energy management tasks.

Our PLC product platforms work on Medium Voltage (LV) and Low Voltage (LV) networks and our SoC offers both end-device and DCU/Service Node functionalities throughout the PHY, MAC and Convergence layers.

Applications

On a broad level, most if not all of our PLC SoC applications are tied to Active Energy Management. One of the applications for PLC technology is Advanced Metering Infrastructure (AMI) which allows utility companies to send and retrieve information from residential and industrial meters using power lines that connect directly to their servers. AMI also includes In Home Displays (IHD) and Gateways with which consumers and utility companies can use to control and manage residential energy usage.

PLC usage also extends to other applications that also use electricity as a source of power and require some (or substantial) intelligence for control and monitoring. Some of these applications include:

  • Advanced Metering Infrastructure (AMI)
  • Airport Runway Lighting
  • Internet of Things (IoT) 
  • Home Area Network (HAN)
  • Smart Appliances
  • Solar Plant Control & Monitoring
  • Street Lighting Networks
  • Substation Communications
  • Traffic Signal Control & Monitoring