By Guolai Yang

The STAR Energy/Water/Gas Integrated Automatic Meter Reading System (AMR) was designed independently by STAR INSTRUMENTS, and has adopted DLMS/ COSEM international standards. The system structure is modular, so that the functions and structure are more flexible and able to efficiently meet a broad range of users’ demands.

STAR INSTRUMENTS always dedicates itself to AMR system applications of utility meters and has been tracking the developments of AMR technology during its research and development programmes for many years. In view of the domestic and international technology and market conditions, STAR INSTRUMENTS is highly committed to AMR R&D and has succeeded in independently developing STAR Energy/Water/Gas meters Integrated AMR system. The characteristics of the STAR Integrated AMR system include a high level of foresight, flexibility, compatibility and openness.

Foresight: The AMR system complies with the DLMS/COSEM international standards. From PC Management system, Data Concentrator to Energy/Water/Gas meters, all designs are in accordance with the IEC 62056 standard to satisfy domestic and international market demands, with the result that the STAR Integrated AMR system meets the highest standards in every aspect of its design.

Flexibility: The modular designs are adopted between the concentrators and meters. There are a variety of communication options that can be chosen, such as Carrier wave, RF wireless, 485 bus, Carrier ware/485 forwarding and so on. Notably the RF wireless solution adopts the Star-Net, MESH network and other kinds of networks. The real-world circumstances determine which solution is optimal. By embedding different modules between the meters and concentrators, the appropriate communication protocol can be installed. All communications could be fulfilled inside the modules while the transmission outside the modules is transparent. Between the concentrators and the PC management system, the same designs are used, and a variety of models can be chosen from, including CDMA, GPRS, PSTN, serial port direct connection (mainly for testing), dedicated line, GSM and many others according to the user’s actual situations, simply replacing the uplink communication module of concentrators.

The communication system is an independent platform, which is managed independently by the management system. Users can choose to use the energy meters, water meters or gas meters made by STAR INSTRUMENT that meet their own needs and financial circumstances, with the option of choosing part of them at first, and then expanding to other types of meters in incremental steps during operations in order to protect the user’s investment.

For the different types of meters (such as the energy meters which have a strong power supply or the water or gas meters which have a weak power supply), the different data collection solutions can be provided to adapt to different types of meters.

Compatibility: Protecting users’ rights and interests and creating value for users is at the heart of the STAR INSTRUMENT’s operating philosophy. The STAR Integrated AMR system adopts international standards and opens its interfaces to its users. As a non-proprietary system, once users choose the STAR Integrated AMR system, they can free themselves from proprietary systems, because all kinds of meters can be chosen to link into the system as long as the meters meet IEC 62056 standards. That is the maximum protection for users’ rights and interests.

Openness: According to different meters (made by STAR INSTRUMENT or other companies), users can expand the communication protocols for data collection themselves in order to adapt to the users’ choices of different meters.

These features bear testimony to STAR INSTRUMENT’s commitment to satisfying the customers by providing professional R&D, quality manufacturing, marketing and maintenance services. STAR INSTRUMENT’s mission is to be a “Professional manufacturer of utility meters”.