open source ANSI optical probe

In the US (and apparently Australia?), there is a smart power meter interface manifested as an infrared optical half-duplex serial link.  The protocol is standardized in ANSI C2.18.

Not all regions of the country have meters with this interface.  It varies between power companies and the age of the power meter.

As it happens, the place that I moved to had such meters, and as a hobbyist project, I designed and built an optical probe to "speak" this protocol.

I've provided design files here:

and there is some additional information here:

It has been a frustrating project, though.  Although the boards will form a perfectly good optical link between themselves, I haven't been able to provoke the slightest response from the power meter.  I've become convinced that it must not even have that feature turned on.

I'm posting just to let individuals know about the design.  Perhaps there is someone in another region of the world who can make better use of the effort.

Although it was designed for ANSI C12.18, it ought to also be adaptable for IEC 61107.  With different software, it could also function as a pulse counter.