Freescale Semiconductor (NYSE: FSL) today introduced a new micro-electromechanical system (MEMS) accelerometer featuring ultra-low power consumption and a simple plug-and-play approach to tilt threshold detection for use in physical tamper protection for smart meter applications. Freescale’s Xtrinsic MMA8491Q energy-efficient accelerometer expands the portfolio to industrial markets requiring wide pin pitch, visually inspectable leads and long product life cycles. “Smart meters are proliferating with the emergence of the connected home and smart grid, and protection from physical tampering is a critical requirement,” said Seyed Paransun, vice president and general manager of Freescale’s Sensor & Actuator Solutions Division. “Freescale is addressing this need with a simple to use, cost-effective and extremely low-power 3-axis accelerometer with specific embedded functionality.” Designed for applications requiring reduced complexity and advanced system integration, the Xtrinsic MMA8491Q accelerometer for tilt threshold sensing plays an integral role in Freescale’s system-level smart meter reference designs that detect physical tampering (introduced at Sensor Expo 2012 and Metering Europe 2012). Movement of the meter is detected through the change in tilt angle and communicated to the utility company as a tampering event. The Xtrinsic MMA8491Q accelerometer was designed to be very flexible and useful for a wide variety of applications beyond smart metering in which orientation needs to be accurately measured – motion detection in gaming consoles and home appliances, for example. The accelerometer also is ideal for tracking asset handling in business and industrial settings and can be employed in eHealth and portable health monitoring systems. Tweet this: @Freescale introduces new Xtrinsic sensor for smart meter tamper protection www.freescale.com/MMA8491QXtrinsic MMA8491Q 3-axis accelerometer features The Xtrinsic MMA8491Q accelerometer for tilt sensing features X-, Y- and Z-axis tilt threshold detect outputs and operates with reduced power capabilities that intelligently determine when a device should operate in a low-power mode or shut off, helping prolong battery life.