Ampy Selects Ramtron FRAM Memory for Pay as You Go Utility Meters

Ramtron International Corporation (Nasdaq: RMTR), a leading developer and supplier of non-volatile ferroelectric random access memory (FRAM) and integrated semiconductor products, has announced that the company’s FRAM memory products have been designed into Pay As You Go utility meters by Ampy Automation Ltd. for the Salt River Project (SRP), based in Phoenix, Arizona, USA.

At present, Ampy Automation intends to deploy as many as 100,000 pre-payment meters over the next 24 months for the SRP M-Power programme. The meters incorporate a two-way communication capability that offers enhanced functionality including automatic meter reading (AMR), online enquiries, remote connect/disconnect, and complex rate structures. The meters also enable customers to exercise more control over their energy consumption, leading to cost savings and more efficient energy distribution.

“FRAM usage in the Salt River Project meters is another example of FRAM’s growing acceptance among advanced metering solution providers,” said Ramtron CEO Bill Staunton. “We are pleased that Ampy Automation continues to specify FRAM for its line of advanced metering products.”

FRAM’s unique performance characteristics are ideally suited for advanced metering products since they require higher data collection rates than meters of the past. FRAM memory offers faster write speed and much higher write endurance than older non-volatile memory technologies such as flash and electrically erasable programmable read only memory (EEPROM). Due to its leading-edge features, Ramtron’s FRAM memory is being used worldwide in a multitude of advanced utility meter products including the world’s largest advanced meter management (AMM) project in Italy, with over 27 million connected electricity meters.

About Ampy Automation’s Pay As You Go Meters
Ampy Automation’s Pay As You Go metering system has been designed to offer high levels of functionality to the utility market, while providing an easy-to-use means of crediting and retrieving usage data for the consumer. Installation of the system into the consumer’s premises requires no special training. Initially, the consumer’s residence is fitted with the new Pay As You Go meter in the same way as a traditional meter is installed. A Customer Information Unit is then conveniently connected to any outlet inside the home. The Display Unit acts as the consumer’s gateway to the meter allowing the transfer of credit and the retrieval of consumption information to allow easy budgeting of usage and purchases. All information exchanged between the devices is sent over the existing power cables using power line carrier communications. For more information about the SRP M-Power program go online.

About FRAM Memory
Ramtron’s FRAM memories are a new generation of semiconductor memory that combine high-performance and low-power operation with the ability to store data in the absence of power. Due to the product’s unique advantages, FRAM memories can improve a variety of electronic consumer and industrial products. Applications for Ramtron’s FRAM memory devices include electronic power meters, automobiles, copiers, printers, security systems, and many other systems that require reliable and high-speed data storage without an external power source. Ramtron is currently working to integrate FRAM with additional analog and mixed-signal circuits to provide high-value semiconductor solutions for its customers.

About Ramtron
Ramtron International Corporation, headquartered in Colorado Springs, Colorado, is a fabless semiconductor company that designs, develops and markets specialised semiconductor memory, microcontroller and integrated semiconductor solutions used in a wide range of product applications and markets worldwide. Additionally, Ramtron works with various leading-edge licensees and manufacturers to bring its technology to market.