Texas Instruments announced sampling of its 16 MHz MSP430F47x4 ultra-low power microcontrollers (MCU) for one- and multi-phase metering. By integrating up to four individual 16-bit sigma delta analog to digital converters (ADCs), a 32 x 32-bit hardware multiplier, a 160-segment LCD driver with contrast control, up to 60 KB of flash memory and a real time clock (RTC), the F47x4 devices are said to enable a five-to-one reduction in system components. The company’s utility metering portfolio also includes devices targeted at water and gas metering, as well as power line communications (PLC) and radio frequency (RF) interfaces for automated meter reading (AMR). MSP430 MCUs provide low power consumption needed to extend battery life -- over 12+ years -- eliminating costly ongoing meter service calls for battery replacement. The already available MSP430FE42xx Series of devices includes an embedded signal processing (ESP) unit that integrates the metering function -- including current and voltage measurement and power calculations. The company also offers dedicated devices including a single-chip flow meter, the available MSP430FW42xx MCU, which features an embedded scan interface optimized for measuring rotation and AMR interface.