Standards have a big market impact - it is often a market requirement to meet specific standards for certain products and systems. Data exchange with metering equipment, including AMR, is a good example, and quite a few standards (IEC and others) take care of this.

However, it is often said that standards take years to establish, and when it comes to updates and maintenance work, it gets even harder. IEC, being aware of these problems, created the possibility of liaising Technical Committees or Working Groups with associations.

Nearly two years ago, a "D liaison" was established between IEC TC13 WG14 and the DLMS User Association, the originator of the DOMS/COSEM specification. The purpose of this liaison can be read in almost every standard of the IEC 62056 series:

“The International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC) draws attention to the fact that it is claimed that compliance with this International Standard may involve the use of a maintenance service concerning the stack of protocols on which the present standard IEC 62056-42 is based.

The IEC takes no position concerning the evidence, validity and scope of this maintenance service.

The provider of the maintenance service has assured the IEC that he is willing to provide services under reasonable and non-discriminatory terms and conditions with applicants throughout the world. In this respect, the statement of the provider of the maintenance service is registered with the IEC. Information may be obtained from the DLMS website.

In line with these statements, the DLMS UA provides registration services for certain standard elements of the DLMS/COSEM specification. Recently the DLMS UA and WG14 co-operated to create a new communication profile with the necessary maintenance work. The result can be found in the new edition of the "Green Book" DLMS-UA 1000-2 and led to the amendment/revision of the following IEC documents:

IEC 62056-46, Electricity metering - Data exchange for meter reading, tariff and load control - Part 46: Data link layer using HDLC protocol.

Draft IEC 62056-47, Electricity metering - Data exchange for meter reading, tariff and load control - Part 47: COSEM transport layers for IP networks.

IEC 62056-53, Electricity metering - Data exchange for meter reading, tariff and load control - Part 53: COSEM Application layer.

The D-type liaison has been a useful tool, both for the maintenance of the DLMS/COSEM specification and for bringing in new elements quickly for supporting new market requirements, like meter reading via the Internet. Advantages include

  • The DLMS UA is able to participate directly in the standardisation process.
  • IEC TC 13 WG 14 benefits from the technical input, maintenance services and resources provided by the DLMS UA.
  • The users of the DLMS/COSEM specification benefit from faster standardisation, up-to-date availability of latest developments and continuous support.