PROPOWER equipment for PLC

January 2, 2005.

New PROPOWER family for PLC:

The new PROMAX PROPOWER line consists of three basic elements:

  • Spectrum analyser
  • White noise generator
  • Source of simulated PLC signals
PROPOWER: Complete instruments family for PLC
PROPOWER: Complete instruments family for PLC

All the elements have been designed for a field use and using it in combination allows to evaluate the network response in front of PLC signals.

What is PLC?

PLC is the abbreviation of Power Line Communications, the technology that allows the transmission of voice and data through the existing mains at speed rates of up to 135 Mbps, with continuous enhancement thanks to the technology development.

PLC technology uses an already wide-spread infrastructure, as they are the electrical distribution cables. Thus, the mains that arrives to any building in any place of the world - even there where not yet the telephone line arrives, without additional works nor other complications- this acts like a data network in where each plug becomes a potential connection point to Internet.

Brief history

The original use of PLC was limited to the control of the electrical supply lines and the transmission of consumer counter data readings at low speed rates. Later, the electrical companies themselves began to use their own supply lines for the internal data transmission.

In the year 1997, in the Canada and England market appeared a new technology that could obtain access to Internet using the mains: the commercial PLC was born. Germany becomes the first nation to offer it.

PLC operation

The PLC by means of electrical cables requires of a headend modem to send the signal to the electrical plant which supplies the building. In the user home a PLC modem will be installed (similar to ADSL technology).

The network topology consists of two systems composed by three elements:

First system: “Outdoor or To access”, it covers the section of the mains that goes from the low voltage section corresponding to the distribution transformer up to the electrical consumption counter. It is managed by an headend equipment (first element of PLC network) that injects to the mains the data signal that comes from the transport network.

Second system: “Indoor”, it covers the section that goes from the user consumption counter up to all the plugs located inside the homes.

In order to communicate both systems, an amplifier equipment is used, that is the second element of PLC network; normally installed near the consumer counter.

The third and last element from PLC network is the user modem, which directly receives the signal of the electrical plug. To this modem is possible to connect a computer, an IP telephone or any compatible communications equipment.

Indoor and Outdoor systems

In PLC technology the emitting equipment transmits low power signals within frequency range thousand times higher than 50 Hertz that is the operating margin of the electrical power. Therefore, as the electrical energy and the data transmission operates in very different and separate frequencies, allows that both can share the same physical transmission channel without interfering with themselves.

PLC application fields

  • Internet 24h at high speed
    New services will be available thanks to the greater bandwidth: games, domotics, security, videoconference, teleworking...
  • Television, telephony and radio “on demand”
    Video and sound transmission through the electrical cable will be able, and due to the greater bandwidth to enjoy interactive programming and “on demand” services.
  • Local and extensive networks LAN, WAN and VPN
    It allows to share documents and resources; to communicate the company offices located in different cities, even countries or continents.
  • Smaller costs
    It will not be necessary to carry out expensive telephone and data line facilities to have a local network at user homes and business companies, lowering the amount of expenses.