To enable wireless communications between temperature sensors and gateways, most temperature monitoring vendors depend on WiFi, Bluetooth, ZigBee, or other commonly-implemented wireless technologies. CORIS, on the other hand, is recognized as one of the few vendors that uses LoRa wireless technology to facilitate these communications.
When you see the list of benefits LoRa wireless technology provides over its wireless communication counterparts, our decision becomes all the more clear.
The Advantages of LoRa Wireless Technology
LoRa wireless was originally developed for outdoor, battery-operated sensors spread out over long distances (more than 10 miles, to be exact.) Given this initial application, LoRa wireless technology has not only incredible range but also incredible ability to penetrate walls and floors in large buildings.
We can illustrate this range with a few examples from our own portfolio. We have customers in large hospitals whose sensors are 12 floors from the CORIS Gateway, as well as customers with two gateways covering hundreds of sensors spread across a 22-building campus.
So what is it about LoRa wireless that allows for increased range and penetration? This can be attributed again to the fact that LoRa wireless communications operate at a lower frequency than other wireless technologies. Consider this in the context of AM and FM radio. AM has much greater distance and ability to penetrate buildings than FM, primarily because it operates at a much lower frequency (kilohertz versus megahertz).
In the U.S., LoRa wireless technology operates at 915 MHz, whereas WiFi, Bluetooth, ZigBee, and others operate at 2.4 GHz. One of the reasons 2.4 GHz is so poor at penetrating walls and floors is because water molecules absorb 2.4 GHz signals and there are a lot of water molecules in concrete, cinder block, even drywall — which in turn prevents signals from passing through these surfaces.
(Note: Microwave ovens blast food with 750 watts of 2.4 GHz radio waves, and the water molecules absorb that frequency and heat up. Most WiFi, Bluetooth, ZigBee, and other 2.4 GHz radios only transmit at 1 watt, so don’t worry about your water molecules heating up!)
How These Advantages Factor into Installation and Operation
Building upon the foundational benefits of LoRa wireless technology, CORIS provides patented network security that not only ensures temperature sensor data is securely and accurately transmitted and received, but also eliminates the need to put “holes” in customers’ firewalls so CORIS Gateways can communicate with the internet. These patented communications capabilities allow for a simplified setup and operation.
What’s more, the implementation of LoRa wireless empowers CORIS to use multiple gateways in a single installation, with each gateway receiving signals from all the sensors. If one gateway loses power or internet connection, the other gateways that continue to operate enable continued communications. From the CORIS portal, you can easily see which sensors are communicating through which gateways, as well as the signal strength for each sensor.
The use of multiple gateways can be critical for a range of customers, from those who experience frequent power or internet outages to those with core facilities in a campus environment or where sensors are spread across multiple buildings. That way, real-time temperature readings and alerts are continuously communicated to the CORIS system and staff — with the ability to customize alerts so staff only sees alerts relevant to their devices while core managers can see all of a facility’s temperature data and any issues that arise.
LoRa Is a Game Changer for Wireless Temperature Sensors
LoRa wireless technology is changing temperature sensor installation and operation for the better. The increased range and penetration of LoRa wireless means that customers can install a single CORIS Gateway to handle dozens or hundreds of devices — all while ensuring the reliability of their communications to CORIS servers. It’s a win-win: you get up and running with your system faster, save installation costs, and always get the data you need to maintain safe operations.
Have questions about the LoRa wireless technology we use or other aspects of our temperature monitoring system? Get in touch with us today.