IPv6 is the new, enhanced form of Internet Protocol which extends the available address range from today’s 4.2 billion devices using IPv4, to a large 39-digit number of uniquely addressable devices. Jon Stretch, Executive Vice President at Landis+Gyr EMEA says, “This is a milestone development as an increasing number of devices such as cell phones and gaming consoles are being connected to the internet and the available IPv4 addresses are therefore rapidly being depleted.
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IPv6 offers high scalability allowing the ‘internet of things’ to be realized, a concept in which every imaginable device on earth is connected to the internet with their own unique IP address. Smart meters are no exception, and being able to give each smart meter a unique IPv6 address will bring direct benefit to utilities the world over, through improved communication and data management possibilities, as well to society at large by providing the end consumer with direct access to data regarding their energy consumption in real time.”. The IPv6, which has been embedded into the firmware of a Landis+Gyr electricity meter, can be used over a wide variety of different physical networks including Ethernet, GPRS, Wi-Fi and fiber.
- In some European countries meters are now being directly connected to fiber-optical networks if access to these is available.
- Plastic optical fiber technology has been used in the Landis+Gyr meter to provide a reliable, low cost and easily maintainable fiber connection.
- Landis+Gyr has had IPv4 compatible Ethernet and GPRS/UMTS smart meters in its portfolio for many years, and IPv4 networks will continue to exist for some time to come.
- With this in mind, Landis+Gyr has used a dual stack solution which not only supports the new IPv6 standard but also provides backwards compatibility, supporting today’s IPv4 standard.
- In order to ensure full future flexibility, Landis+Gyr has integrated the IPv6 in such a way that it will be possible to replace the stack without high levels of investment.
- Going forward, Landis+Gyr will continue with testing and evaluation of different vendors’ IPv6 protocol stacks and also implement full IPv6 end-to-end connectivity with Landis+Gyr’s Head End System.
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- Trials with newly emerging IPv6 public mobile networks are also planned.
- Ultimately Landis+ Gyr will add the IPv6 protocol stack to its other smart meter types including its new range of OFDM PLC enabled meters within EMEA as well as its RF mesh enabled meters which are deployed mainly in North America.
- About Landis+Gyr Privately held Landis+Gyr is the leading global provider of integrated energy management products tailored to energy company needs and unique in its ability to deliver true end-to-end advanced metering solutions.
- With annualized sales of more than US$1.5 billion, Landis+Gyr operates in 30 countries across five continents, and employs 5,000 people with the sole mission of helping the world manage energy better.