Overview of testing
The SMDA scheme tests interoperability and interchangeability, and provides a degree of assurance that devices comply with the requirements of the Smart Metering Equipment Technical Specification (SMETS). The SMDA scheme does not provide assurance that all SMETS requirements are met, but provides information to SMDA members regarding which requirements are tested. The SMDA scheme can agree that additional testing should be performed on a risk-basis to demonstrate compliance with SMETS requirements that would not be proved through interoperability or interchangeability testing.
The testing consists of two parts:
- Interoperability relates to the ability of Type 1 devices to interact with the Data Communications Company (DCC), successfully receiving, interpreting, acting on and responding to messages.
- Interchangeability goes further, checking that all devices on the Home Area Network (HAN) such as in-home displays, meters, pre-payment interface devices or HAN connected auxiliary load switches can communicate with one another, interpret and act on commands, no matter what brand is being used.
SMDA Assurance currently covers Credit and Pre-Payment functionality in CSP Central and South and CSP Norths. The plan below outlines the steps taken to reach Full Assurance. Partial Assurance can be issued when device specific issues are identified during testing which have been tolerated by the SMDA Management Panel Sub-Group. A list of the accepted device specific and common tolerable issues are available here.
Full Assurance can be awarded to devices if no tolerable device specific issues are identified during testing. Tolerable common issues are accepted during testing and Full Assurance can be awarded as these issues are outside of the Scheme’s and manufacturers scope to resolve.
A Full Assurance Baseline has been developed and is available here. This document refers to “SMDA-252 SMDA Tolerated Issues for Full Assurance v1.1” which outlines the accepted common issues. When a common issue is resolved, this document will be updated to reflect the change and a new Full Assurance Baseline will be issued to reference the updated accepted common issues. Devices with Full Assurance will not be affected by a change in baseline and can be uplifted using the exemption process.
The diagram below highlights the Full Assurance process for devices, including new devices, devices awarded Partial Assurance and devices awarded Full Assurance experiencing common issues.
The SMDA Scheme Operator appointed Critical Software in April 2021 as the SMDA Test House.
Critical Software is a system, software and data engineering company who are already well established in the GB smart metering space.
A specific SMDA test facility in Southampton opened in mid-2017. All interoperability and interchangeability testing takes place in this facility.