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IEEE 1901

IEEE 1901

The HD-PLC technology is fully conformant with IEEE 1901 including Inter-System Protocol (ISP) coexistence. The IEEE 1901 Standard, ratified in 2010, was the first global standard for powerline communication developed for applications such as multimedia home networking, audio video, and smart grid. It has been amended in IEEE 1901a-2019 with enhancements of the HD-PLC physical layer (wavelet) for Internet of Things applications and has been revised in 2020 (IEEE 1901-2020).


Sponsored by the IEEE Communications Society, this globally recognized BPL standard is designed for use in a wide range of applications including smart energy, transportation and Local Area Networks (LANs) in both residential homes and enterprise.

IEEE 1901 introduces sophisticated modulation techniques that are similar to what is used in WiFi and Wavelet Orthogonal Frequency Division Multiplexing algorithms. These innovations overcome traditional BPL technical concerns, such as RF noise generated in power lines, regional discrepancies in voltages and other power-transmission characteristics around the world, and the complexities of transmitting data through transformers.

Two technologies are implemented in the IEEE 1901 Standard. One is the HD-PLC technology based on a wavelet modulation the second one is based on FFT modulation. IEEE 1901 specifies a mandatory mechanism that allows coexistence both between those two technologies and between BPL and other technologies. The IEEE 1901 Inter-System Protocol prevents interference when the different BPL implementations are operated within close proximity of one another. The IEEE 1901 ISP also has been extended to International Telecommunication Union’s family of home networking standards ITU-T G.hn (ITU-T G.9972) and has been approved and required by the U.S. National Institute of Standards Technology’s as coexistence mechanism for broadband power line communications.

HD-PLC Implementation

HD-PLC IEEE 1901-compliant networking products deliver high-performance, interference-free and secure data transmission in excess of 500 Mbps in LAN applications even when multiple BPL technologies are connected to the same wire and range of up to 1,500 meters for first-mile/last-mile services.

Market Implications

Effectively transforming any conventional electrical outlet into a networking node, the products support a range of compelling applications, among them:

  • high-definition video streaming
  • Internet Protocol gaming
  • expanded data communications
  • simplified image and sound distribution
  • enhanced home security and enterprise services such as home automation, digital signage and triple-play communications


IEEE 1901-2020
Title: IEEE 1901-2020 Standard for Broadband over Power Line Networks: Medium Access Control and Physical Layer Specifications
Revision of IEEE 1901-2010 standard including 1901a-2019 amendment
Standard approved in September 2020

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