Silicon Labs SoCs add Wirepas for IoT asset tracking




Silicon labs and Wirepas have launched a combined hardware and software solution for large-scale mesh networks in internet of things (IoT) applications like asset tracking and building automation. The two companies partnered to make Wirepas Massive, a scalable mesh network software solution that connects and localizes sensors, tags and luminaires available on Silicon Labs’ EFR32BG21 (BG21) and EFR32BG22 (BG22) modules and systems on chip (SoCs).

A Wirepas network offers one horizontal connectivity layer for any IoT use case. This covers collection of data from sensors to an IoT application in the cloud, control of remotely located devices, device-to-device communication in the network with or without the cloud, and the ability to track the location of moving assets. All the networking intelligence is included in the Wirepas software to form a resilient large-scale wireless mesh network. Multi-hop operation is a key feature, which means a network can have multiple gateways without subnets; Wirepas says this enables massive scale, supporting up to 4 billion devices in a single network.

Wirepas Massive Mesh
A Wirepas Massive network can have multiple gateways without subnets. Multi-hop operation grants massive scale for deployment of IoT networks. (Source: Wirepas)

“When you fuse the scalability of our Massive with the ultra-low power of Silicon Labs’ BG21 and BG22 solutions, the possibilities become endless,” stated Teppo Hemiä, CEO of Wirepas. “The unparalleled combination opens the door for a variety of use cases that transcend asset tracking and extend to connected lighting, smart energy and – consequently – sustainability.”

Powered by the BG21 and BG22 Bluetooth modules and SoCs, Wirepas Massive delivers flexible IoT deployments to offer the following benefits across industries:

  • mesh installations scalability
  • high reliability and interference tolerance in a variety of environments for large scale lighting control systems and preventive maintenance
  • goods and assets tracking across the supply chain with embedded high-density inventory
  • battery-operated infrastructure to monitor buildings and track assets.
Silicon Labs Wirepas chips Image

The companies said their collaboration is particularly beneficial in the deployment of Wirepas Massive for end-to-end logistics, as the ultra-low power and affordability of Silicon Labs’ BG22 offers logistics players a unique system for pallet and goods tracking throughout the supply chain. The solution also makes it possible to connect access control, smart lighting and sensors to a single network – all to power smart buildings.

“Silicon Labs portfolio of wireless products is designed to meet the most demanding IoT applications with industry-leading security and field-proven reliable wireless performance, all delivered in an optimized SoC,” said Ross Sabolcik, vice president and general manager for industrial & commercial IoT at Silicon Labs. “We’ve had a long-standing partnership with Wirepas to help them deliver large scale mesh networks for demanding professional installations. We are pleased to continue our partnership with Wirepas and that they have chosen our BG21 and BG22 family of high-performance, wireless SoCs for their Wirepas Massive solution.”

Wirepas recently also introduced a new smart tracking software suite that embeds Wirepas Massive, and enables vendor interoperability. The new software, called Wirepas Massive Tracking, is particularly targeted at large spaces such as warehouses, construction sites, campuses or hospitals, where deploying wired positioning infrastructure can be both time consuming and expensive. With the software, a smart tracking system in a 100,000 m² facility can be installed in a single day, without disrupting site operations. Then, Wirepas Massive Tracking’s inventory mode allows users to add an inventory of up to 5,000 devices with 100% accuracy in under a minute. The new suite also introduces interoperability between tag vendors, enabling true diversity in form factors and price points – which Wirepas said was previously unseen in smart tracking and sensing projects.

Wirepas Massive Tracking is already supported by several Wirepas partners, including Axones, BlueUp, ELA Innovation, Fujitsu Components, Good Way, Haltian, Redlore, Tatwah, Treon and SolidRun, as well as system integrators such as Apitrak, Arenzi, Bornemann, DMI, Indutrax, Intranav, Mecomo, Omniscient, Orange, Succesful Endeavours and Wakecap. This ecosystem of locator, asset tag, gateway providers and system integrators is expected to grow in the future as more partners come on-board.


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Original article: Silicon Labs SoCs add Wirepas for IoT asset tracking
Author: Nitin Dahad