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Elster, Itron, Landis+Gyr, NICT and Silver Spring Networks Drive Adoption of IEEE 802.15.4g
Industry-wide collaboration promotes increased smart grid technology interoperability

RALEIGH, NC; LIBERTY LAKE, WA; ALPHARETTA, GA; TOKYO, JAPAN; and REDWOOD CITY, CA — May 7, 2012 — Elster, Itron, Inc. (NASDAQ: ITRI), Landis+Gyr, the National Institute of Information and Communications Technology (NICT) of Japan, and Silver Spring Networks announced today that the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) released the 802.15.4g radio standard, a global wireless networking standard enabling interoperable communications between certain smart grid devices, including smart meters and smart home appliances. The new standard represents a huge leap forward in establishing common and consistent communication specifications for utilities deploying smart grid technologies.

This standard, published on April 28, 2012 is an important fundamental standard for the large-scale networks that characterize the smart grid. The standard’s baseline specifications for wireless communications will allow millions of devices to interoperate with each other in mesh, star, point-to-point, or any other topology.

Key industry players Elster, Itron, Landis+Gyr, NICT, and Silver Spring Networks were active participants in shaping the standard, striving to ensure backward compatibility with existing deployed devices, and ensuring that features necessary for long-term operation were represented. A significant, internationally recognized ecosystem contributed to the development of the standard and included smart grid platform providers, equipment vendors, silicon suppliers, electric and gas utilities, and government research, standards, and regulatory agencies. The standard is already supported by products from a large number of global vendors and is expected to rapidly gain worldwide adoption.

“True system interoperability, achievable by establishing open standards, will enable the future of Smart Grid platforms,” said Ed Myska, president of Elster Solutions. “As one of the leaders of the IEEE 802.15.4g effort, Elster will continue to drive open standards together with the global community.  Our universal platforms are designed with 802.15.4g, enabling the greatest flexibility for utilities, and we will continue to drive development of future Smart Grid standards.”

“The smart grid is a complex ecosystem with interconnected devices, communication technologies and software. Standards help simplify this environment by enabling coexistence of multi-vendor components,” said Simon Pontin, Itron Chief Technology Officer. “As a global smart grid influencer, we’re advocating for standards that can be applied internationally as smart metering and smart grid continue to evolve at a rapid pace outside of North America.”

“The recent approval of the 802.15.4g amendment is a giant step toward making it easier for the smart grid industry to adopt interoperable wireless communications technology,” said Ruben Salazar, Landis+Gyr’s Director of Research and Technology. “This amendment is one of the critical building blocks of a standards-based communication stack that will allow Landis+Gyr, as a global smart grid leader, to continue to advance solutions with multiple vendors and applications that meet the needs of the various geographical and regulatory environments around the world.”

“It is very important to Japan’s smart grid and smart meter systems that the IEEE has approved the TG4g radio standard.  NICT was one of the major contributors to this standard, and we look forward to similar cooperation in other IEEE802 smart grid standards activities,” said Hiroshi Kumagai, Vice President, NICT.

“Since our inception, Silver Spring has been committed to delivering an open, standards-based smart grid networking platform on behalf of customers and we were pleased to help address the critical need for an appropriate wireless standard to do so,” said Raj Vaswani, Chief Technology Officer at Silver Spring Networks.  “We congratulate the global smart utility network community for coming together in support of this standard and enthusiastically support its expanding adoption.”


About Elster:
Elster (NYSE: ELT) is one of the world's largest electricity, gas and water measurement and control providers. Its offerings include distribution monitoring and control, advanced smart metering, demand response, networking and software solutions, and numerous related communications and services - key components for enabling consumer choice, operational efficiency and conservation. Its products and solutions are widely used by utilities in the traditional and emerging Smart Grid markets. Elster has one of the most extensive installed revenue measurement bases in the world, with more than 200 million metering devices deployed over the course of the last 10 years. It sells its products and services in more than 130 countries across electricity, gas, water and multi-utility applications for residential, commercial and industrial, and transmission and distribution applications. For more information about Elster, please visit http://www.elster.com/.

 

About Landis+Gyr:
Landis+Gyr is the leading global provider of integrated energy management products tailored to energy company needs and unique in its ability to deliver true end-to-end advanced metering solutions. Today, the Company offers the broadest portfolio of products and services in the electricity metering industry, and is paving the way for the next generation of smart grid.  With annualized sales of more than US$1.5 billion, Landis+Gyr, a standalone growth platform of the Toshiba Corporation (TKY:6502) and 40% owned by the Innovation Network Corporation of Japan, operates in 30 countries across five continents, and employs 5,000 people with the sole mission of helping the world manage energy better. More information is available at landisgyr.com.

About NICT:
The National Institute of Information and Communications Technology (NICT) is the sole administrative agency of ICT in Japan.  NICT promotes the full spectrum of research and development from basic to applied research with an integrated perspective, and thus promotes the advancement of Japan as an intellectual nation that leads the international community.  Moreover, NICT forms close ties with the academic and business communities in Japan as well as with research institutes overseas and returns its R&D findings to society in a broad range of fields. For more information visit www.nict.go.jp/en/index.html

About Silver Spring Networks:
Silver Spring Networks is a leading smart grid networking platform technology and solutions provider. We have connected over 11 million homes and businesses throughout the world with the goal of achieving greater energy efficiency for the planet. Our innovative products enable utilities to gain efficiencies, integrate renewable energy sources and empower customers to monitor and manage energy consumption. Silver Spring Networks clients include Baltimore Gas & Electric, CitiPower & Powercor, Florida Power & Light, Jemena Electricity Networks Limited, Pacific Gas & Electric and Pepco Holdings, Inc. among others. For more information please visit www.silverspringnet.com.

 

About Itron:
Itron is a world-leading technology and services company dedicated to the resourceful use of energy and water. We provide comprehensive solutions that measure, manage and analyze energy and water. Our broad product portfolio includes electricity, gas, water and thermal energy measurement devices and control technology; communications systems; software; as well as managed and consulting services. With thousands of employees supporting nearly 8,000 customers in more than 100 countries, Itron applies knowledge and technology to better manage energy and water resources. Together, we can create a more resourceful world. Join us: www.itron.com.
 
For additional information, contact:
Sharelynn Moore
Vice President, Corporate Marketing and Public Affairs
(509) 891-3524
sharelynn.moore@itron.com

 

Elster
Wei-En Tan
Elster Marketing Communications

+1-919 250 5753
Wei-En.Tan@elster.com

 

Landis+Gyr
Dan Jacobson                        
Landis+Gyr
218-562-5195 
dan.jacobson@landisgyr.com

NICT
Sachiko Hirota
Public Relations Department
+81-42-327-6923
publicity@nict.go.jp

Silver Spring Networks
Noel Hartzell
Global Communications
650-298-4184
nhartzell@silverspringnet.com