Patent Number: 6,798,353

Title: Method of using flash memory for storing metering data

Abstract: A metering data preservation and storage methodology, including steps for protecting data during periods in which power is lost to the meter, is provided. In particular, a methodology for using non-volatile flash memory structures is used in association with various volatile memory structures for the storage and preservation of metering data acquired from a solid-state utility meter. The methodology includes the use of the volatile memory structures for the temporary storage and alteration of the measured and calculated metering data so as to avoid an effective reduction in the lifespan of the non-volatile memory structure which can only be written, erased and rewritten to a finite number of times. Further, such usage reduces costs associated with the maintenance and incorporation of such memory types in the meter. The methodology further includes the use of the non-volatile flash memory as a permanent storage medium for the acquired metering data during power loss to the meter.

Inventors: Seal; Brian K. (Westminster, SC), Norrod; Eric (Westminster, SC), Simmons; Stephen M. (Melbourne, FL)

Assignee: Itron Electricity Metering, Inc.

International Classification: G11C 16/10 (20060101); G11C 16/06 (20060101); G08C 025/00 ()

Expiration Date: 09/22016