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TI Unveils Power Line Modem with E-Meter Demonstration Platform at 2004 Developer Conference

Feb 18, 2004

HOUSTON (Feb. 18, 2004) - Illustrating its analog and mixed-signal systems expertise with design tools that optimize product development and reduce time to market, Texas Instruments Incorporated (TI) (NYSE: TXN) today unveiled and demonstrated a new power line modem with e-meter platform at the 2004 Texas Instruments Developer Conference in Houston. This platform offers the system-level integration required to rapidly deploy next-generation remote metering products to market faster while reducing cost. (See www.ti.com/sc04048.)
The Power Line Modem with E-Meter platform applies advanced Orthogonal Frequency Division Multiplexing (OFDM) signal processing techniques to transmitting low- to medium-speed data across low-voltage power lines appropriate for remote metering applications. OFDM makes the modem robust against multi-path interference and impulse noise that is common on power lines.
The kit consists of two modems, each packaged in a meter-sized box. The "slave" modem communicates either measured e-meter data or test data across a power line as requested by the "master" modem. The "master" modem can be optionally connected via RS-232 or USB to a PC to monitor the measured data or display modem error rates.
The new platform utilizes numerous TI analog and digital signal processing (DSP) components. An MSP430FE427-based single-chip microcontroller for single-phase e-meters is included on the slave unit to perform power measurement functions. The modem uses a TI TMS320C5409A DSP for its OFDM and Viterbi signal processing, an AFE1230 codec for data acquisition and filtering and a THS6182 line driver to drive data to the power line through a coupling transformer.

Designers Benefit from Level of Optimization, Lower Cost

TI´s platform technology works as a blueprint for designers, effectively decreasing design time by providing the customer with all schematics, gerbers, firmware, software, bill-of-materials - everything to rebuild the platform - and complete documentation. A cross between evaluation models, which are intended for general-purpose designs, and reference designs, which are optimized for individual applications, TI´s platforms give engineers more time to invest in design, while lowering overall project cost by eliminating months of system integration.

In addition to the Power Line Modem with E-Meter platform, Texas Instruments offers three other unique demonstration platforms that are currently available:

  • The quad-channel thermal electric cooler platform demonstrates high-precision temperature regulation, within 0.01 Celsius of four temperature channels (for example, EDFA pump lasers) using a single TMS320F2812 digital signal controller with data acquisition, signal conditioning, pulse width modulator (PWM) drivers and power management components. 
  • Industrial control solutions via the Controlled Area Network (CAN) bus demo platform include three demo boards interconnected through cables supporting the CAN bus. Demonstrating heat sensing, light intensity measurement and motor functions, the platform showcases the industry´s first 3.3 V/5 V mixed voltage CAN bus capability using TI´s SN65HVD230/251 CAN bus transceivers.
  • The low-cost video interface demo platform shows how to convert analog video source signaling to a VGA-type output. Complementing its highly-integrated TMS320DM642 solution, the platform connects a lower cost TMS320C6204, TMS320C6205 or TMS320C6711 DSP to TI´s single TVP5150 or multi-channel TVP5145 video decoder through an inexpensive FPGA.

All the platforms will be displayed and demonstrated at the Texas Instruments Developer Conference. Developers can visit


for more information regarding current and emerging platforms.