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Lower by way of the noise: discover the perfect match on your industrial wi-fi wants


Wi-fi applied sciences have advanced considerably over time. Wi-fi options was once restricted to sensing less-than-critical purposes and connecting person units. These days, wi-fi applied sciences are in a position to assist bandwidth-intensive employee productiveness purposes, dependable mobility for crucial property, elevated information assortment from all areas of the plant, and purposes that enhance operational efficiencies and manufacturing uptime.

Wi-fi is discovering makes use of in each industrial setting. For instance, autonomous guided automobiles (AGVs) and autonomous cellular robots (AMRs) on manufacturing flooring, remote-controlled cranes in delivery terminals, trains transferring at 200 mph, and autonomous automobiles in mines and oil and gasoline websites, to call just some.

When you want excessive information charges, the primary candidates for wi-fi are Wi-Fi 6 and 6E, public and non-public 5G, and Cisco Extremely-Dependable Wi-fi Backhaul. However which expertise is greatest? The very best wi-fi expertise depends upon your use case and is decided by concerns equivalent to the quantity of knowledge, the variety of units, the world of protection, the criticality of community availability, and whether or not the info will probably be used for real-time selections. (Just a little lag is appropriate in the event you’re capturing manufacturing information to check developments—however not in the event you’re remotely unloading a 50,000-pound container or steering a tele-remote mining automobile round a bend.)

On this weblog, we’ll evaluate the advantages of every of those three wi-fi applied sciences. For extra particulars, take a look at our new white paper Select Wi-fi That Is Greatest-Match and Not Drive-Match for Your Industrial Community.



Wi-Fi 6 and 6E—default wi-fi for many industrial IP units

The most recent requirements, Wi-Fi 6 and 6E (IEEE 802.11ax), ship extra throughput than earlier requirements, and decrease latency. Wi-Fi 6 additionally works with tools utilizing older Wi-Fi requirements. Wi-Fi 6 is a wonderful alternative for connecting units through their default Wi-Fi interface, particularly in small areas or manufacturing strains. It may be tough to supply good Wi-Fi 6 radio planning for protection over massive areas. Most transmit energy is regulated, and dense supplies like delivery containers or steel partitions can intervene with indicators.

Public 5G—enhanced cellular broadband

Like Wi-Fi 6, 5G guarantees excessive information speeds and low latency. The improved Cell Broadband (eMBB) 5G service is similar to wireline networks, with information charges as much as 20 gigabits/second (in mmWave frequency bands). Like LTE, public 5G depends on the brand new C-band spectrum to extend throughput in Sub-6GHz bands. Public 5G is now accessible in lots of international locations, a bonus for multinational organizations that need to standardize on one wi-fi expertise. Take into account it in the event you’re seeking to centrally monitor and management distant SCADA websites, HD cameras, or new operational expertise (OT) instruments like augmented-reality helmets. The disadvantage is that 5G-enabled units and C-band companies should not broadly accessible.

Personal 5G—non-public spectrum

Take into account non-public 5G in the event you function in international locations the place the C-band spectrum is offered for personal organizations. It’s a good selection for connecting cell phones, tablets, and IoT gateways which have a built-in 5G interface. In comparison with Wi-Fi, it has greater transmit energy and is much less prone to interference because the band is devoted to non-public 5G. That’s a successful mixture for big areas like plane factories, ports, and terminals. You’ll be able to both handle a non-public 5G community by your self or use a managed service. However bear in mind that individuals with the networking, cybersecurity, and automation abilities to deploy and handle 5G networks are briefly provide. One other disadvantage of personal 5G is that few of at this time’s units assist 5G standalone entry (SA). Most assist non-standalone entry (NSA), which makes use of the 4G LTE management airplane.

Cisco Extremely-Dependable Wi-fi Backhaul: fiber-like throughput and seamless handoffs

Cisco Extremely-Dependable Wi-fi Backhaul delivers fiber-like efficiency and will be deployed in a short time. This feature shines in the event you want 700 Mbps or greater information charges, are connecting transferring property, linking areas which can be just a few miles aside, or want short-term connectivity the place it’s not sensible to drag fiber. Extremely-Dependable Wi-fi Backhaul makes use of unlicensed (free) spectrum and is offered in all places. As a result of the underlying expertise is Wi-Fi, you’ve got full management over your community. Remember the fact that Cisco Extremely-Dependable Wi-fi Backhaul is the infrastructure, not an entry mechanism. Which means you should utilize it to attach any industrial system with an Ethernet or Wi-Fi interface. Watch this brief video to study the place this expertise is getting used.


Matching wi-fi applied sciences to your use case

Listed here are some pattern pairings of commercial IoT use circumstances and wi-fi community applied sciences.


Manufacturing. Producers have very distinct connectivity necessities for warehouses, manufacturing strains, AGVs and AMRs, and management loop processes. Reliability is the highest criterion—a community glitch that pauses operations will be expensive. Which of the three wi-fi applied sciences is greatest depends upon your location, bandwidth and latency necessities, cybersecurity wants, the diploma to which you need to automate administration, and your price range for units and community infrastructure. To regulate equipment or cellular tools over the community, select Extremely-Dependable Wi-fi Backhaul. With 99.99% availability and seamless handoffs, it avoids wi-fi hiccups that might cease manufacturing or result in wasted materials. When you’re connecting stationery units and employees’ cellular units, Wi-Fi 6 or 5G are good choices.

Related rail. On subways and trains, the onboard community gives passenger Wi-Fi and connects safety cameras, digital signage, cost techniques, and train-to-ground radios. The trackside wants connectivity for sensors that monitor observe standing, signaling, stage crossings, axle counters, and extra. Each 5G and Extremely-Dependable Wi-fi Backhaul are good candidates for related rail. Which is greatest depends upon the protection space, bandwidth necessities, and value constraints.

Ports and Terminals. Ports are utilizing industrial wi-fi networks to load and unload containers sooner and enhance employee security and operations. Common purposes embrace terminal automation, automated container motion utilizing Optical Character Recognition (OCR), and autonomous automobiles. To attach employees’ telephones and tablets in frequent areas, Wi-Fi and mobile will be good decisions. For protection throughout the whole space, with seamless handoff as automobiles transfer from one protection zone to a different, use Extremely-Dependable Wi-fi Backhaul. Malta Freeport makes use of Extremely-Dependable Wi-fi Backhaul to attach its terminal working system (TOS) to 250 quayside cranes and rubber-tired gantries transferring as much as 25 miles per hour. The TOS sends the subsequent job order to crane operators wherever they’re, eliminating unproductive time spent driving again to the operations heart for orders.

Related automobiles. Normal Motors makes use of Cisco Extremely-Dependable Wi-fi Backhaul for vehicle-to-trackside connectivity. GM engineers seize information from automobile sensors throughout efficiency testing in actual time and regulate the automobile on the observe. This shortens testing cycles and shortens time to market. If you’re connecting automobiles in a single location—suppose Indy automobiles or automobiles utilized in open mining—you do not want something apart from Extremely-Dependable Wi-fi Backhaul. If you’re connecting automobiles over a regional or countrywide-area—e.g., passenger autonomous automobiles—discover 5G V2X growth.


With all these nice decisions, you would possibly end up utilizing not one, however two and even all three of those applied sciences in your operations. The excellent news is that Cisco gives tools, safety, and automatic administration instruments for all of those, serving to you match wi-fi easily into your end-to-end IP community. Take a look at our options for industrial Wi-Fi, non-public 5G, and Extremely-Dependable Wi-fi Backhaul.

For extra industrial wi-fi use circumstances and a deeper dive into wi-fi applied sciences, learn our new white paper, Select Wi-fi That Is Greatest-Match and Not Drive-Match for Your Industrial Community.


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