This week's most important announcement? SEP 2 interoperability moves forward

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By Jesse Berst

 

A brief press release that received little attention may have important long-term implications for home energy management and demand response. An interoperability consortium for an important standard announced its formal incorporation along with several milestones.

 

Smart Energy Profile 2.0 defines standards to connect devices in the home with the grid. The Consortium for Smart Energy Profile Interoperability is a group of competing home automation specifications that is working together to ensure that their various products will all plug and play with SEP 2.

 

Until recently, HomePlug, Wi-Fi and ZigBee were competing to be the sole way to communicate in a home. Now they've abandoned that proprietary approach and are working very hard to make sure they can all talk SEP 2 to each other. They've even completed an interoperability Plugfest to measure their success.

Consortium for Smart Energy Profile Interoperability (CSEP) Completes Incorporation

Consortium Successfully Completes First Interoperability Plugfest

July 31, 2012 08:05 AM Eastern Daylight Time

BEAVERTON, Ore.--()--The Consortium for Smart Energy Profile 2 Interoperability announced its formal incorporation, with founding members HomePlug® Alliance, Wi-Fi Alliance® and ZigBee® Alliance continuing a clear path to SEP 2 interoperability for consumer benefits in the smart grid market.

“CSEP incorporation is an important step toward establishing the Consortium as the recognized creator of the SEP 2 test plans and tools required to ensure interoperability across multiple communications technologies.”

Launched in October 2011, the Consortium will create and maintain a certification test suite to validate interoperability for a variety of wired or wireless devices. This will provide the Smart Grid ecosystem – including utilities, service providers, product vendors and consumers – confidence in application and device interoperability while accelerating the availability of products and services. Products to be certified as a result of the Consortium’s work are expected to include thermostats, appliances, electric meters, gateways, electric vehicles and countless other devices in the Smart Grid.

The Consortium successfully finished its first interoperability Plugfest that tested the interoperability of products built using either HomePlug, Wi-Fi or ZigBee communications. More Plugfests will be conducted over the coming months as the Consortium moves to complete its certification program.

“The CSEP incorporation further solidifies the industry’s commitment to collaboration and delivery of interoperable SEP 2 solutions,” said Edgar Figueroa, Consortium chairman. "CSEP incorporation is an important step toward establishing the Consortium as the recognized creator of the SEP 2 test plans and tools required to ensure interoperability across multiple communications technologies."

SEP 2 is an Internet Protocol-based application layer whose development involves the ZigBee Alliance partnering with Wi-Fi Alliance, HomePlug Alliance and other organizations. The Smart Energy 2.0 Working Group expects to complete the SEP 2 Application Specification in Q4 2012. SEP 2 was selected in 2009 by the United States National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) as a standard for home energy management devices.

About The Consortium for SEP 2 Interoperability

The Consortium is an inclusive and communications technology-agnostic forum formed to unify and accelerate the realization of interoperable SEP 2 products. The Consortium was formed in 2011 by the HomePlug Alliance, Wi-Fi Alliance and ZigBee Alliance. Membership is open to eligible organizations with a business interest in SEP 2; visit the web site: www.csep.org for complete membership details.

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