IoT

Z-Wave long range enables miles with thousands of nodes

5th January 2021
Alex Lynn

The Z-Wave Alliance has announced that the Z-Wave Long Range (Z-Wave LR) specification is available for product development. Z-Wave LR connectivity enables new IoT applications beyond the home, without any need for repeaters, ensuring easy install and low cost. With a network size of up to 4,000 nodes, Z-Wave LR provides the scalability needed in MDU & hospitality deployments.

Z-Wave LR also reduces ongoing maintenance costs with up to ten years of life on a coin cell battery.

The Z-Wave LR specification supports distances of up to several miles with a maximum output power of 30dBm, while supporting up to 4,000 nodes on a single network. This represents a 20x increase over Z-Wave mesh node support while co-existing on the same network as Z-Wave mesh. Z-Wave LR is backwards compatible and maintains interoperability with all Z-Wave certified devices.

The first implementation of Z-Wave LR, by Alliance member Silicon Labs, has already achieved a direct line of sight transmission range of one mile (1.6 km) utilising +14dBm output power. With a foreseeable transmission range of several miles, the Z-Wave LR specification significantly expands the possibilities of system scalability beyond the confines of a single residential property. Z-Wave LR extends Z-Wave capabilities to larger, more complex installations and markets including hospitality, MDU, smart cities, commercial installations, large residential compounds, and more.

“The Z-Wave Alliance Technical Workgroup has been working to fine-tune the Z-Wave LR specification for deployment,” said Niels Johansen, Z-Wave Alliance Technical Committee Chairman. “These significant enhancements position the Alliance to solidify Z-Wave as the de facto standard for IoT solutions where sub-GHz is mission-critical to device performance.”

“For almost 20 years, Z-Wave has transformed wireless technology for smart home and security devices. As IoT technology has expanded beyond the walls of the home and to the sidewalk, to commercial buildings, smart cities, and beyond, we decided to support these evolving industry needs,” said Mitch Klein, Executive Director for the Z-Wave Alliance. “Implementing Z-Wave and Z-Wave LR into IoT networks maximises value and minimises costs while providing more breadth of choice.”

Z-Wave LR is now available from Silicon Labs on their Z-Wave 700 platform and the specification is now available to Z-Wave Alliance members for development. The Z-Wave Alliance certification program will include Z-Wave LR by March 2021, anticipating numerous Z-Wave LR enabled devices to launch throughout the year.

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