RIIoT™ RF Technology Overview

RIIoT™ RF is the highly reliable radio frequency protocol used by Radiocrafts Industrial Internet of Things (RIIoT). RIIoT™ RF is an IEE802.15.4 g/e protocol with CBOR encoding, with a Ack/Retry scheme for maximum reliability.

IEEE802.15.4 g/e compatible

The role of IEEE 802.15 Smart Utility Networks (SUN) Task Group 4g is to create a PHY amendment to 802.15.4 to provide a global standard that facilitates very large-scale process control applications. For example: a utility smart-grid network capable of supporting large, geographically diverse networks with minimal infrastructure and with potentially millions of fixed endpoints. The 802.15.4g was released in April 2012.

The IEEE 802.15 Task Group 4e was chartered to define a MAC amendment to the existing standard 802.15.4-2006. The intent of this amendment was to enhance and add functionality to the 802.15.4-2006 MAC to: a) better support the industrial markets, and b) permit compatibility with modifications being proposed within the Chinese WPAN. The 802.15.4g was approved in 2011.

The resulting IEE802.15.4 g/e standard provides for a very reliable, power efficient PHY/MAC that targets applications such as: monitoring, process automation, factory automation, smart metering, home automation, smart building, entertainment, patient monitoring, and telemedicine applications.

IEEE802.15.4 g/e is supported by many of the major semiconductor suppliers. It is used in existing wireless standards, such as Wi-SUN, for utilities. IEEE802.14.4 g/e also uses techniques from familiar standards such as WirelessHART and ISA 100.11.a.

The RIIoT™ RF additions

The RIIoT™ RF additions reside on top of the IEEE802.15.4 g/e standard and are designed for Industrial IoT network requirements, including:

  • Low power consumption
  • High reliability
  • Long range
  • Ease of design
  • Advanced security

Additions available in all RIIoT™ implementations

Ack/Retries: This reliability feature is built into the 802.15.4e MAC, where acknowledgment frames are used to acknowledge every request frame. The MAC layer sends retries if ACK is not received.

5kbit Mode: 5kbit mode is an optional low data rate that is beyond the IEEE802.15.5g standard. The 5kbit mode can be appropriate for networks that need to operate over a long range — up to 8km (LOS).

Frequency Hopping for Higher Reliability: Compliant with the DFE mode in the Wi-SUN specification

AES-CCM: An authenticated encryption scheme that protects network data against eavesdropping, modification, replay, and impersonations. AES-CCM offers confidentiality, integrity, and authenticity assurances. RIIoT™ offers this additional layer of encryption on top of what is offered in the IEEE802.15.4 standard — so each link in the network is protected by a unique key while supporting hundreds of nodes.

Additions that require RIIoT™ Net Controller

The Concise Binary Object Representation (CBOR): The application layer of RIIoT™ RF uses CBOR data encoding — a very efficient encoding that is fully compatible with JSON. This approach ensures that RIIoT™, in addition to needing low amounts of power, is also compatible with protocols used in cloud applications.

Whitelist: A whitelist of nodes can be set on the RIIoT™ net controller — only the nodes on the list can be allowed to join the network.

End-to-End Encryption: An optional layer of end-to-end encryption is available — the encryption key is only known to the node and the user application in the Cloud. The network data is protected from attacks along the full routing path, including the gateway.

Over-the-Air Updates: Supports over-the-air updates of end nodes. Both the user application and RF system firmware can be updated OTA, with multiple nodes updated simultaneously.

If you are interested in the complete RIIoT™ Network solution that includes the I/O, please click here.