Phoenix-PRIME – the first certified pure software PRIME implementation for standard low-cost Kinetis microcontroller

17thFeb 2015

The Phoenix-PRIME solution will allow for reducing the number of hardware components in electricity meters and other components used in Smart Grids. On the consumer side:this solution is changing regular power meters into much more intelligent smart meters with all the benefits of both remote meter reads and energy usage optimization. On the manufacturing side: it will simplify the construction and henceforth reduce the cost, allow for efficient use of the completely standard microcontrollers, accelerate project design cycle and shorten time to market and finally facilitate software modifications and continuous updates. The remote update of the software is faster and much more cost-effective than the hardware replacement.

PRIME is the worldwide Powerline Communication (PLC) standard for Advanced Metering Infrastructure (AMI). Utilities and solution providers from multiple countries deployed globally over four million PRIME meters. PRIME is being utilized and installed in more than ten countries worldwide (including UK Spain, Poland, Portugal, Lebanon,) and many more countries are currently conducting PRIME evaluation in the field (Australia, India, Argentina, Brazil).

Phoenix Systems, a leading provider of embedded software, in collaboration with Freescale® Semiconductor has developed a pure software implementation of the PRIME PLC communication protocol for Freescale’s Kinetis® family of microcontrollers. This successful collaboration has reached an important milestone, by completing the certification in the PRIME Alliance approved Smart Grid Laboratory. The unique pure software approach of this solution, with no dedicated DSPs, opens new opportunities on a price sensitive Smart Grid market.

“The strategic collaboration between Freescale and Phoenix Systems opened the way for building new software-based Smart Meter products offering end users all the benefits of the energy usage optimization for a very competitive price”, said Pawel Pisarczyk, the CEO & Founder  of Phoenix Systems.

“Phoenix Systems’ expertise in SW development targeting PLC communication is the world class,” said Jean Marc Darchy, EMEA Smart Energy Marketing for Freescale Semiconductor.

“Phoenix Systems’ successful certification underscores its sharp embedded software acumen, while serving as the first optimized implantation on completely standard Kinetis MCUs.”

The collaboration between Freescale and Phoenix Systems was initiated due to efficient business support from the Bristol SETsquared Centre. As Pawel Pisarczyk said “SETsquared has been a powerful accelerant for our business in the UK that has given us the opportunity to contact wordwide leaders in the embedded solutions market such as Freescale® Semiconductor”.