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The Science of The Smart Meter.

The Science of The Smart Meter.

In order to fully grasp the “science” of the Smart Meter one must first understand the basics. The OpenWay Smart Meter is the meter that is being supplied by SDG&E. It will use several systems with different capabilities and capacities. OpenWay is able to use multiple transport technologies (RF, BPL, PLC, IP) so almost any network can be “seamlessly integrated”. This will allow these meters to “talk” to each other. Currently  the OpenWay meter uses a one-way RF signal that operates in the 902-928 Mhz range. In order to provide a secure network they use what is called “spread spectrum” technology. This spread spectrum technology creates noise like waves which make it difficult to detect. Most spread spectrum systems transmit an RF signal bandwidth as wide as 20 to 254 times the bandwidth of the information being sent. Some spread spectrum systems have sent out RF bandwidths 1000 times their information bandwidth. The reason being is that in order to transmit information to distant meters (i.e. rural areas) it has to produce a larger wave. With this information, YOUR information, utility companies will be able to gather your patterns of use, consumer preferences, and much more. This wireless in-home networking is able to connect with smart appliances, smart thermostats and other meters. These Meters also feature an advanced service switch which will allow the utility company to remotely connect, disconnect, or LIMIT service. Soon, these smart meters will start using a wireless technology called Zigbee which is similar to Wi-Fi and Bluetooth.

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