Powerline Communication Coupling Transformers

What if individual plug readings could shared over the power line?

I just noticed this and I thought it can be of use for the project.

If you find something of interest, please share.




Their brochure is here:



Robert Wall's picture

Re: Powerline Communication Coupling Transformers

Probably OK in towns, but not a good idea if you are in a rural area. A friend lives on a (non-working) farm and had his Netgear Ethernet powerline kit blown up by spikes from his neighbour's milking machine. I had to drill 600 mm thick stone walls to thread a CAT5 cable to replace it.

inquisitive student's picture

Re: Powerline Communication Coupling Transformers

I am doing a final year project at for my honours degree through the Open University and have focused my project on the development of "socket sensors" where CT sensors would be built in to electrical sockets around the house, capturing the data by point for review by the occupant.  I believe that The Openenergy monitor system would work well with this idea and use of the powerline technology would be a huge step benefit.  I am curious however, as to why no one other than Robert above have commented on the possibilities that such a development could deliver?


Robert, I do not have any electrical knowledge and in my thinking on this subject as curious about the risks that such equipment may raise, how could your friend have avoided the damage and still make use of the components?


Robert Wall's picture

Re: Powerline Communication Coupling Transformers

Basically, filters at the socket (or mains distribution strip) would severely attenuate the mains-borne signals as well as the interfering spikes. He would have needed to put a filter on the incoming supply to isolate his power distribution from the source of interference. A filter rated at 100 A would have been very large and very costly, 10-15 m of outdoor cable was far cheaper and totally impervious to interference.

It worries me that you have no electrical knowledge. The problems with doing what you suggest properly and safely, whilst not insurmountable, are also not trivial (search here for Givmon) and in reality you're likely to need professional help with the manufacture and testing of any prototypes and you're certainly going to need professional help if you intend to put anything on the market.

Once you have overcome those hurdles, there are certain attractions. If you can have a unit that is totally enclosed and double-insulated, you can make direct galvanic connections to measure current and voltage, saving two transformers (ct & vt) and you can probably power everything with a capacitive dropper (saving another transformer), leaving only a fairly small mains carrier transformer and its coupling capacitors as the largest components. And all that will lead to quite a large reduction in the space needed.

inquisitive student's picture

Re: Powerline Communication Coupling Transformers

Dear Robert,

Thank you for your insight and concerns, but rest assured my studies at this stage are purely theoretical and I will not be wiring anything up without guidance from the right professional.  What I find interesting though is that the theory seems to indicate that my proposal could work, but there are some challenges that need to be overcome.  I will search Givmon and note what is recorded there.

In the meantime thank you for your help and guidance, I don't think that my product will be on the market anytime soon, but I do hope that as technology advances there will be a break through that could make my dream a reality.

Kind regards.


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