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M.d.C. Technology on 802.15.4: We Push It To the Limit

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Jul 5, 2011
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M.d.C. Technology is excited to announce that we succeeded in pushing a wireless 802.15.4 channel close to its limits. We were able to transmit 40 digital signals sampled up to 1000 samples per second over the wireless 802.15.4 protocol. In total, then, that amounts to 40000 bits per second transmitted and received over the air. This is a breakthrough for us, bringing us ever closer to the maximum potential for 802.15.4 wireless transmission and demonstrates our ability to get the maximum from wireless technologies.

These days, wireless technology is common and can be found in many different flavors designed for different use cases and their requirements. Each medium, however, has its own limits. WiFi, Zigbee, and 802.15.4 each are better for some projects than other standards. 802.15.4, for instance, has radios which use very little energy and are very inexpensive but also cannot transit as much data and sacrifices complexity and frame overhead in order to achieve the low energy consumption and low cost. This is better for simple transmissions but makes it more difficult to send highly complex messages. We pushed the envelope and managed to get a step closer to the theoretical limitations of the 802.15.4 protocol with this test.

The real challenge was not sending so much data over the 802.15.4 medium, but rather synchronizing the data to reconstruct the original signals. We had to receive everything, put it in the right order, and play it back at exactly the same rate as the transmission. This is a difficult challenge with the 802.15.4 protocol because the interval between data transmission and reception is not guaranteed to be constant. This requires precise clocks and various correction techniques. Given the concessions of 802.15.4 in order to conserve power, those techniques are complicated, making it a difficult problem to solve. However, we have the knowledge and expertise to overcome those limitations by implementing advanced systems and making them work.

M.d.C. Technology is a small company but we have years of experience and training in devising wireless technology solutions. We can squeeze the most out of protocols like WiFi, 802.15.4, and Zigbee, just as we reached 40 digital signals transmitted over the 802.15.4 standard. If you are looking for help doing the most with wireless technology, M.d.C. Technology has the expertise to push the limits.

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