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Using ASE2000 to send a freeze with time of freeze command to an ION meter with DNP protocol

Published date: 16 June 2020

In cases where there is communication problem using DNP protocol, a test set is necessary to identify and troubleshoot the issue.

Product Line
Any ION meter that support DNP protocol.
While any device that supports DNP protocol can be used, this article is written specifically for ION meters.

ASE2000 is a test set used by the hardware department to validate DNP communications with ION meters.  As such this software will be used for this demonstration.

To verify correctness of DNP implementation in ION meters.

ASE2000 can be used as a master station simulator for DNP3.0 protocol. A trial version can be downloaded from Applied Systems Engineering website:

- Refer to DNP 3.0 and PowerLogic ION Technology technical note (70072-0105-02) to setup ION meter as DNP slave. This document has DNP architecture overview as well.
- Refer to PowerLogic ION8650 DNP 3.0 device profile technical note (70022-0126-00) for description of DNP 3.0 communication protocol employed by each ION meter.

This article demonstrates how to setup the ION meter and ASE2000 to send a freeze command to an ION meter using DNP protocol for:
- Binary Counters
Class 0 Data command will be used to returns all points, including frozen counters with time of freeze, for verification.

In this test:
- An ION8600 meter will be used.
- Binary Counters 0-3 (a DNP Slave Export module in the default template) will be frozen; these counters refer to real energy (refer to screen shots below).

It is necessary to setup the ION meter to be able to accept freeze with time of freeze command.

a)  In DNP Slave Options module, change the format from 16-bit to 32-bit for both Binary Counter Static and Frozen Binary Counter Static.  This change will ensure large numbers are read correctly.  For frozen counter static register, the selection should be '32-bit frozen counter with time of freeze':

b)  Enable 'frozen static objects' for the points that will be frozen in the corresponding DNP Slave Export module.

In an ION8600 there is no need to connect the 'Freeze' input.  However, this may not be the case for other ION meters (in that case connect an External Pulse module to 'Freeze' input).

1.  File > Select Protocol:

2.  In Properties > Protocol-specific:
- (Host tab)  set the IP Address:
Note the port 20000 which is the default DNP port over Ethernet communication.

- (Exchange Defaults tab)  set the slave address; by default this is 100 for ethernet connected ION meters:

3.  In Exchange List window, select 'Freeze'; then click on 'Send Once' on the tool bar to initiate a freeze command.  Note the time the command was sent:

The details of the freeze command are shown in the following screen shot (double click on Freeze to open the property window):

Note the following:
- Application Layer Function: Immediate Freeze
- Object 20: Binary Counter
- Variation 0: Any Variation

4.  After some time (to allow the binary counters to increase), in Exchange List window select 'Class 0 Data' then click on 'Send Once' on the tool bar to parse the DNP points in the meter.

A second 'Class 0 Data' 30 minutes later:

a)  Binary Counters have increased while the Frozen Counters have not (last two screen shots).
b)  Time for Frozen Counters is in UTC time [16:07:26]
c)  Time for Frozen Counters is the same as the time when the 'Freeze' command was initiated [11:07:25] (refer to screen shot in step 3 - the difference of 1 second is due to the difference between meter time and the computer were the ASE2000 was installed).

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