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Which AMR frequencies can be used in the Scandinavian countries?

Posted by Espen Davidsen Nov 26, 2015 11:00:00 AM

32706726_thumbnail-894965-edited.jpgDid you ever wonder which radio frequencies can be used for meter data collection?

A good starting point to learn more about the frequency administration in Europe is CEPT (European Conference of Postal and Telecommunications Administration). The members can use the CEPT recommendation as a reference document when preparing their national regulations in order to keep in line with the provisions of the relevant directives.

Some of the questions we will try to answer in this blog article are: How do the national frequency plans facilitate millions of AMR radios in each of the Scandinavian countries? What is the current status?

In order to understand the regulations, it is important to know that an AMR radio is defined as Short Range Device (SRD). This underlines the fact that AMR is in fact very closely related to IoT (Internet of Things) devices which is also a SRD. The most important difference is that most AMR devices are not using internet to transport the data but a separate network also called Radio Local Area Network (RLAN).

Some of the frequencies are open for AMR without any license, but the usage must comply with the given terms and conditions. Other frequency bands require a license or registration in order to utilize certain frequencies. Yet other frequency bands can be licensed for commercial usage.

Norway

Norwegian radio frequencies for AMR

In Norway two main frequency bands are defined and reserved for AMR. Using these two frequency bands does not require a license, but usage is restricted by rules for maximum sender effect, bandwidth and duty cycle.

In addition to the two open bands, one of the AMR system vendors have licensed a third frequency band for AMR.

AMR frequency band 1 (Unlicensed)

Frequency band = 169,400–169,475 MHz
Maximum sender effect = 500 mW e.r.p. (milliwatt effective radiated power)
Maximum bandwidth = 50 kHz
Maximum duty cycle = < 10 % per hour.

In Norway parts of this frequency band is still registered to Red Cross in the frequency plan, but has been reassigned to be used for AMR by law 28.04.2014.

AMR frequency band 2 (Unlicensed)

Frequencies = 444,675 MHz, 444,700 MHz and 444,725 MHz
Maximum sender effect = 500 mW e.r.p. (milliwatt effective radiated power)
Maximum bandwidth = 75 kHz
Maximum duty cycle = < 20 % per hour

AMR frequency band 3 (Licensed to Aidon)

Frequency band = 870,000–875,600 MHz
Maximum sender effect = 500 mW e.r.p. (milliwatt effective radiated power)
Maximum bandwidth = Not defined
Maximum duty cycle = < 2,5 % per hour

This license also requires the usage of ACP, Adaptive Power Control to reduce the transmit power if possible.

Sweden

Swedish radio frequencies for AMR

In Sweden only one frequency band is reserved for meter reading. In addition, a number of frequencies are reserved for Telemetric applications. It is likely that AMR can be considered as a telemetric application.

AMR frequency band 1 (Unlicensed)

Frequency band = 169,400–169,475 MHz
Maximum sender effect = 500 mW e.r.p. (milliwatt effective radiated power)
Maximum bandwidth = 50 kHz
Maximum duty cycle = < 10 % per hour.

The frequency band is shared with other applications such as Assistive Listening Devices and Non-specific short-range devices.

Telemetric frequency bands, might be used but not verified

Frequencies:
438,000 – 439,6875 (Licensed)
439,6875 – 439,9875 (Unlicensed)
443,9875 – 444,4125 (Unlicensed)
444,000 – 444,5875 MHz (Licensed)
870,5375 – 870,6625 (Unlicensed)

Denmark

Danish radio frequencies for AMR

In Denmark no radio frequency bands are dedicated to AMR. Although, a number of SRD and Telemetric frequencies have been identified and is likely to be used in AMR systems. No commercial  AMR frequencies were found.

The following frequencies can be used for low effect radios with dedicated or integrated antenna for telemetric applications and data transfer.

Telemetric frequency band 1 (Unlicensed)

Frequency band = 169,400–169,475 MHz
Maximum sender effect = 500 mW e.r.p. (milliwatt effective radiated power)
Maximum bandwidth = 50 kHz
Maximum duty cycle = < 10 % per hour.

SRD Frequencies that can be used for AMR (Unlicensed)

433,950 MHz
434,000 MHz
434,050 MHz
444,450 MHz
444,550 MHz

Maximum sender effect = 500 mW e.r.p. (milliwatt effective radiated power)
Maximum bandwidth = 25 kHz

Telemetric frequency band 2 (Unlicensed)

Frequency band = 870,000–875,600 MHz
Maximum sender effect = 500 mW e.r.p. (milliwatt effective radiated power)
Maximum bandwidth = Not defined
Maximum duty cycle = < 2,5 % per hour (Can apply for usage up to 10% for network relay points)The license also requires the usage of Adaptive Power Control (ACP) to reduce the transmit power if possible.

Are we on the same frequency

I hope this summary was useful and not to technical. To get the full details I will recommend you to start with the EFIS (ECO Frequency Information System) frequency register for Europe.

If you have more information about the AMR frequencies in Scandinavia or other countries please share your knowledge with all our blog subscribers. To comment, or add information please use the Comments form below.

An AMR meter device is defined like this by CEPT:

“The metering device category covers radio devices that are part of bidirectional radio communications systems which allow remote monitoring, measuring and transmission of data in smart grid infrastructures, such as electricity, gas and water.”

Please note that this information is extracted from a number of official sources and combined to make it easier to compare the countries. We take no responsibility for errors, misinterpretations or spelling errors.

For more AMR related blog articles please see:

7 reasons to choose wireless mesh networks in AMR

Backhaul communication for AMR and AMS in smart grids

 

 

 Free ebook: Planning radio networks for Smartgrid

Topics: CARMEN


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By: Espen Davidsen

Espen Davidsen is a computer systems professional with more than 15 years of experience with communication systems and distributed information systems. He is currently director of Telecom and Utilities at Teleplan Globe.

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