DS2 technology allows any electrical network to be converted into a high-speed access mechanism. DS2 supports powerful repetition capabilities, which allows the PLC signal to reach any corner of a building. Multi-dwelling units, hotels and schools can be easily connected for high-speed networking.
Last mile access can be provided by using the electrical cabling that connects every building to its transformer substation; it is even possible to fit medium voltage transformer stations with DS2-based equipment, allowing quick and inexpensive deployment of metropolitan area networks using the medium voltage powerlines (which carry 10 kVolts to 66 kVolts of electricity) as a transmission medium.
A Brief History of Powerline Communications
Powerline first started in the '30s with a few power companies sending signals over their high voltage networks. Early applications were all narrowband and at the time, the powerline was considered to be a difficult medium for data communications due to low speed, signal attenuation, noise interference and line impedance. Broadband powerline communications have become possible in recent years due to:
· New OFDM signal modulation techniques and protocols;
· Adaptive networking methods;
· Improvements in semiconductor technologies making the technology possible and affordable
In the late 1990´s the major hurdles facing the fledgling Powerline market were still technological. Competing technologies delivered speeds of between 1, 2, 4 and up to 14Mbps, mainly for data sharing but the technology was not yet fast enough or robust enough to support the emerging broadband applications.
Robust, multi-carrier PHY for reliable communications
In 1998, DS2 a new semiconductor startup set about developing a powerline technology that would deliver higher speeds at lower cost specifically for multimedia broadband applications. Using advanced Orthogonal Frequency Division Multiplexing (OFDM) as the basic modulation technique to build the physical layer (PHY), DS2 developed the first robust powerline technology with the ability to cope with the frequency selective fading channels and large time spreads in the powerline channel. Using high density constellations the DS2 OFDM PHY delivers throughput speeds of up to 200Mbps for bandwidth hungry applications such as video. The DS2 system uses High Density Advanced Modulation at each sub carrier of the OFDM signal. Each operation mode (10, 20 and 30 MHz) has 1,536 sub-carriers, the highest number for any powerline technology with modulation densities of 2 to 10 bits per sub carrier and applied independently to each sub-carrier. This ensures reliable communications even in the face of interference. Modulation parameters are adapted in real-time depending on channel quality parameters for each user and each carrier. A further benefit that arises from including such a large number of sub-carriers is the ability to introduce very narrow notches. DS2 technology supports dynamic notching which provides the flexibility to satisfy regulatory requirements around the world or to notch out specific frequencies at any time even in already deployed devices. Key specification highlights or key features of DS2´s 200Mbps Powerline technology include:
Plug and Play configuration
No configuration is required ensuring an immediate out-of-the-box plug-and-play experience essential for self install networked entertainment services such as powerline communications enabled IPTV services.
QoS for simultaneous real-time multimedia applications
For critical data transfer, the "Quality of Service" (QoS) function automatically prioritizes voice and video data over other applications. In this way, real-time applications can be transferred without interference, even if multiple devices are operated in the network at the same time, each running a different application.
Remotely managed through native TR-069 protocol
Unlike most available powerline technologies, DS2 includes on chip support for advanced remote management to deliver real time visibility of the network. In built remote management functions help service providers guarantee the minimum 20 Mbps throughput necessary to deliver high definition video applications.
Link Layer Topology Discovery protocol
DS2 includes on chip support forr advanced user side troubleshooting. Using Microsoft’s Link Layer Topology Discovery (LLTD) protocol Windows Vista automatically detects networking devices and displays them in Windows Vista N etwork Map, allowing one-click access to the device’s Web User Interface to display the actual physical topology of the network
With throughput speed 4 times faster than WiFi DS2´s 200Mbps Powerline technology is ideal for services that require a lot of bandwidth and consistent data throughput such as Internet TV and video on demand and this high speed technology is fully compatible with DS2´s 100Mbps Powerline technology for home data and audio networking applications. No other standard or proprietary solutions available today offer full compatibility between different generations of Powerline chipset technology and products. Avoid earlier 14Mbps and 85 Mbps powerline. These versions are not compatible with any of today´s powerline devices. DS2´s 100Mbps and 200 Mbps technology is the world's highest-speed fully featured powerline communications technology and the only universal option for transmitting high-quality digital video with full home coverage. Advanced features such as quality of service management, multicast, and network isolation make this the ideal choice for any application from Smart Grid applications to integration in consumer electronics devices such as televisions, home theater and IP set-top boxes for triple play. DS2 200 Mbps chips have been awarded the prestigious Best of Innovations Award in the Software/Embedded Technologies category at CES, Las Vegas, 2005 and in 2007.
BRIDGING THE BROADBAND BOTTLENECK WITH NEXT GENERATION 400MBPS POWERLINE TECHNOLOGY
Next generation powerline communications products must support bandwidth hungry applications including FFTH, Multi-Dwelling Unit and BPL applications and within the home networking market new HD-capable multimedia applications, such as multi-channel HD-IPTV delivery or multi-room PVR that will require more than double the throughput speeds provided by today´s powerline technologies. DS2 400Mbps technology will be available in next generation products from DS2 on time to satisfy the demands for extra bandwidth in the digital home and last mile applications that most analysts predict will happen from 2009 onwards.