The ZigBee Alliance, a global ecosystem of companies creating wireless systems for use in energy management, and the IPSO (Internet Protocol for Smart Objects) Alliance have signed an agreement to collaborate on wireless home area networks (HAN) using the ZigBee IP specification and the ZigBee Smart Energy version 2.0 standard.

The two alliances will collaborate on expanding HANs by using IP technology. ZigBee Smart Energy is a wireless HAN standard with more than 40 million smart meters being installed around the world. Common HAN devices include utility meters, thermostats, pool pumps, water heaters, appliances and plug-in electric vehicles.

IPSO is the latest organization to collaborate on ZigBee Smart Energy. Four other organizations are working to expand this standard for HANs, including DLMS, EPRI, ESMIG, and HomePlug Powerline Alliance.

ZigBee Smart Energy enables wireless communication between utility companies and common household devices such as smart thermostats and appliances.

It allows consumers to choose interoperable products from different manufacturers giving them the means to manage their energy consumption using automation and near real-time information. It also helps utilities and energy providers implement new metering and demand response programs to drive energy management and efficiency, while responding to changing government requirements.

Geoff Mulligan, chairman of IPSO Alliance, said: “The IPSO Alliance is pleased to be working with the energy experts at the ZigBee Alliance on their industry leading standard for HANs. We have been playing an active role in this space and our contributions to ZigBee Smart Energy and the ZigBee IP specification will help speed adoption of the smart grid.”