TÜV Rheinland Japan has been accredited by the ECHONET Consortium (on February 29, 2016) as a certification body for ECHONET Lite/AIF Certification Testing*1 and ECHONET Lite/AIF Certification*2 services. The company also announced that it would begin offering these testing and certification services from 1 April 2016.
*1: An ECHONET Lite/AIF Certification Testing Body is an organization that carries out testing based on ECHONET Lite/AIF certification testing specifications.
*2: An ECHONET Lite/AIF Certification Body is an organization that judges whether a device passes or fails ECHONET Lite/AIF certification based on the results of certification testing.
The ECHONET Lite communication protocol is being progressively adopted as the standard for communication between smart meters and HEMS (Home Energy Management System) controllers, and between HEMS controllers and HAN (Home Area Networks). A new certification scheme, known as AIF (Application Communication Interface) certification, is due to be launched as of April 1, 2016. AIF certification consists of testing and certification services, provided by third-party certification bodies in accordance with application communication interface specifications, for the purpose of improving interconnectivity between devices.
In Japan, when utilizing the ECHONET protocol to facilitate communication between smart meters and HEMS controllers, or between HEMS controllers and home appliances, in order to ensure compatibility and interoperability between devices, the target devices (i.e. smart meters, HEMS devices, the eight major devices* and other device categories) must undergo and pass certification testing as specified by the ECHONET Consortium.
*3: The term “8 major devices” refers to smart meter B-route, photovoltaic generation devices, storage cells, fuel cells, EV/PHV (Electric and Plug-in Hybrid Vehicles), air conditioners, lighting devices and water heaters.
In addition, TÜV Rheinland Japan is also an accredited certification testing body for the Wi-SUN and G3-PLC communication interfaces that are employed as lower layer protocols for the ECHONET Lite/AIF communication protocol. This will make it possible for TÜV Rheinland Japan to provide comprehensive interconnectivity testing services that also include lower layer protocols in the future.
Moving forward, TÜV Rheinland Japan will continue to contribute to creating efficient and stable communication environments for the IoT/M2M markets for which rapid growth and expansion is anticipated in the future, as a fair and impartial third-party certification body.
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