|Wireless remote data
Technologies and sample systems that gather sensor data across distances, usually via radio links. This includes general telemetry and SCADA (supervisory control and data acquisition), especially for gathering data about wildlife, natural resources, and distributed energy systems.
Ken Novak's Weblog
Thursday, October 30, 2003
Brazil delays payment to Raytheon for jungle radars
: "The decision by Brazil's government came after delays in the development of a very high frequency (VHF) radio system by Raytheon to serve the $1.4 billion system that monitors drug runners, loggers, and other illegal activities in the Amazon...
It was not clear how this would hinder the full functioning of Sivam, the vast majority of which is already up and running. The Air Force spokesman said that for now personnel were using inferior technology radios. The largest system of its kind in the world, it combines radars, control centers, and aircraft with sensors to create a surveillance web that can monitor illegal deforestation to incursions by unidentified aircraft into Brazil's Amazon.
Raytheon is developing a new radio system which would be especially adapted to the jungle conditions of the Amazon. Perlini said final tests of the radio system would now take place in the first quarter of next year and be fully operational in the second quarter. The Air Force spokesman said only 19 of the 27 radios were currently in place at jungle command centers, which would ultimately improve contact with monitoring aircraft. Perlini said the VHF system was the final part of a huge monitoring system. "It is one part of a very large and complex system," she said. "You know the Amazon is two-thirds the size of the U.S. and you have less roads than in the state of Maine; that adds to the complexity." " 12:39:12 AM
Friday, October 17, 2003
VSAT services finding new customers: 2002 summary of changes in satellite IP markets:
- 90% of new customers request IP support
- "By supporting IP and standardizing certain parts of the technology, [service providers] can deploy two-way VSAT networks with [customer-premises equipment] that costs $500 to $600," Baugh says. He says this would be the floor of the market with users paying about $70 to $200 per month, per site for service for perhaps 128K bit/sec worth of bandwidth.
- Gilat's Spacenet Connexstar costs $119 per month for 128K bit/sec upstream and 500K bit/sec downstream with a one-time equipment cost of $1,000.
- Hughes is the leading provider of VSAT services in North America with Directway. Starband and Tacyon also sell VSAT Internet access services to individual users. These offerings [appeal to new customers "such as real estate agencies and veterinarian offices"
- In the past, most VSAT service providers were interested only in deployments that reached thousands of sites, but there has been a change of philosophy within many providers. Traditional VSAT networks are built based on the amount of bandwidth a company needs and the number of sites that will share that bandwidth. Classic app: reduce the time credit for card authorization, eg "from 15 sec down to 3 sec... A group of 500 stores could share a 128K bit/sec satellite channel and not experience any delays because of the small amount of traffic that's being sent over the network, even though it's regularly used." Price: for 4000 stations, perhaps $60/mo/station, for hundreds of sites, perhaps $100/mo/station.
Monday, October 06, 2003
Lockheed Martin wins airship competition
: The PV-powered helium UAV can "loiter with a 4,000lb (1,814kg) multimission payload in quasi geostationary orbit at altitudes around 65,000ft for periods much greater than contemporary unmanned air vehicles. This could be up to a month with a planned prototype unit and approaching a year for an operational variant. Yet, unlike a satellite, the airship could return to base for maintenance.
Lockheed Martin's highly autonomous, helium-filled design is 152.4m long, 48.7m in diameter, with a volume of 1.5 million m3, said Ronald Browning, the company's director of surveillance systems business development. It carries four electric motors with vectorable large twin-bladed propellers, two on each side of the vehicle [with] high strength-to-weight ratio materials for the airship's skin and thin-film photovoltaic cells to generate power [for] propulsion and the 10 kilowatts necessary to operate the airship's payload.
The company is now under a $40 million contract to mature its airship design through a critical design review in mid-2004. " 5:44:46 PM
Sunday, October 05, 2003
Saturday, October 04, 2003
ZigBee Standard Approved By IEEE: "The ZigBee standard, now officially known as 802.15.4, specifies the physical and media-access control (MAC) layers for the network, which can transfer data at rates up to 250 Kbits per second. The specification defines three throughput levels: 250 Kbits/s at 2.4 GHz, using 10 channels; 40 Kbits/s at 915-MHz, using 6 channels; and 20 Kbits/s at 868 MHz using a single channel. The technology can tranfer data at ranges up to 75 meters, depending on the power used and the transmission environment." 11:56:39 PM
RFID Journal - Peer-to-Peer: RFID's Killer App?: "A small Finnish company has taken a novel approach to solving that problem. Stockway has developed a peer-to-peer network that enables companies to share real-time data about products, regardless of the kind of RFID tag used on them. "We donít track information as such, we track where information can be found," says Lion Benjamins, Stockway's marketing director. .. Stockway's system doesn't create a centralized directory where people can go to find out where files are stored. Instead, Stockway makes the product the center of the system. When a tag is scanned with an WWAI-enabled reader, it lets users know which private network within the system is being used and where distributed information about the product is stored. ..
Another advantage is the system can use any kind of RFID tag or even bar codes. It doesnít solve the problem of needing standardized tags because business partners sharing information need to be able to scan the same tag. But partners could use the software to begin sharing data today with existing tags and readers, while waiting for their industry to agree on a standard tag. .. The system will have to compete with the Auto-ID Center's EPC Network, which also aims to use the Internet to enable companies to share data, though in a more centralized way. " 11:21:05 PM
Followit GPS+GSM: "With help from a cell phone or Internet can you position your object. Taxi companies, transport companies, car rent and even insurance companies can use the transponder in a wide range. .. Telia, a Swedish phone company, think that more than half of the mobile phone traffic is going to be computer traffic." It's called "matchbox sized", but looks about the same size as a cell phone. Another story : "Called Followit, the £700 device was invented by Olaf Lundberg, a Swede who lost his dog while moose hunting. Mr Lundberg's brainwave was to find a way of squeezing the workings of a GPS satellite navigation receiver and a mobile phone with a battery and two aerials into a box that he could strap to his dog's collar... "At first he sold it through hunting magazines, but then he found it was being used by truck companies to monitor the movement of their drivers through Sweden," .. In a demonstration seen by The Daily Telegraph, the device tracked the position of a car to the street in Winchester where the car was parked, even giving details of the nearest house number. Followit is now being sold to parents who want to keep tabs on their children, pet owners, private investigators, car hire firms, yacht owners, haulage companies, and travellers concerned about losing their luggage. It is also being offered to lone workers, such as community nurses, who can use its panic button if they are attacked." 11:08:54 PM
Back to the Future: New Wi-Fi Bridges Use 1999 Standard [Aug. 28, 2003]
: Technical description of WDS bridging that is simple and effective. Summary
from the author: "Apple and Buffalo, to name two, allow their access points to work as APs and bridges simultaneously, which can let you create a cloud of access instead of a little pool. It also reduces costs. In a shocking discovery, which I write about in this article, you can use Buffalo and Apple equipment together in WDS mode. Buffalo's roughly $100 access point (WLA-G54) pairs with Apple's $200-$250 AirPort Extreme Base Station, which has all the gateway features you need." 10:48:47 PM