SmartMesh IP

Functional Overview

SmartMesh IP Functional Overview - Diagram 1A SmartMesh IP network consists of a highly scalable self-forming multi-hop mesh of wireless nodes, known as motes, which collect and relay data, and a network manager that monitors and manages network performance and security, and exchanges data with a host application.

In addition to regular "mesh-mode" (described below), SmartMesh IP also supports an ultralow power roaming node feature, called Blink Mode.

SmartMesh IP Motes

SmartMesh IP Motes - Diagram 2SmartMesh IP Motes are the wireless nodes in a SmartMesh IP network. They connect to sensors/actuators and route data from other motes, yet remain low power.

Each mote can both send and receive messages (supports bidirectional data). Each mote may have a different data reporting rate and the network manager will automatically coordinate individual pair-wise communications to efficiently route the traffic.

Each mote may have a different power supply capability (e.g. line-, battery-, or energy- harvested power). The network manager will load balance traffic accordingly to extend time until the network's first battery replacement.

SmartMesh IP networking software is compiled and fully tested. Motes have an on-board ARM Cortex-M3 processor that supports customer application software using the SmartMesh IP On-Chip Software Developer Kit. Alternatively, a mote may be controlled by an external microprocessor through its serial API interface.

Technical Resources

SmartMesh IP Network Managers

SmartMesh IP Network Managers - Diagram 3

SmartMesh IP network managers perform two major functions for the mesh network. First they serve as an access point mote, connecting the wireless mesh to customer host applications. Second, network managers run sophisticated network management algorithms to maintain performance of the network.

SmartMesh IP network managers come in two versions:

  • EManager (supports up to 100 motes)
  • VManager (supports up to 50,000 motes).


SmartMesh IP EManager - Diagram 4SmartMesh IP EManager

An EManager, or embedded manager, runs as a Manager-on-Chip™ where both the access point function and the network management algorithms run on board the SmartMesh IP 802.15.4 hardware (e.g. LTC5800-IPM).

EManagers support up to 100 motes in the network and are ideal for low power gateway operation.

Technical Resources


SmartMesh IP VManager - Diagram 5SmartMesh IP VManager

VManager is a software-based manager and separate Access Point Motes that enables:

  • Large Networks – up to 50,000 motes in a single network
  • Increased Bandwidth through Multiple Access Points
  • Hot Failover Gateway Redundancy

VManager software runs on an x86 virtual machine (VM), which can be installed on a variety of hardware platforms, from cloud servers down to low power embedded x86-based processors. The VManager software is delivered from Linear Technology as a pre-compiled and tested VM application that may run on VMWare, or Oracle VirtualBox VMs.

One or more Access Point Motes (AP Motes) connect the SmartMesh IP network to the VManager software. An AP Mote is the combination of AP Mote software running on SmartMesh IP 802.15.4 hardware (e.g. LTC5800-IPM)

Video:  Introduction of VManager

Technical Resources


Hardware Form Factors

SmartMesh IP 802.15.4 hardware is available in chip package, or as pre-RF-certified printed circuit board assemblies (PCBA). The 802.15.4 hardware's network behavior is defined by the type of SmartMesh IP software loaded onto the hardware (i.e. mote software, network manager software, or access point mote software).

Featured Products

 

Developer Resources

Starter Kit

SmartMesh IP Starter KitThe SmartMesh IP Starter Kit provides all the tools for evaluating SmartMesh® network performance with respect to your application needs, including high reliability, ultralow power, scalability and ease of installation. A Starter Kit comes with 5 motes and a network manager, and is pre-loaded with SmartMesh IP networking software, so that users may quickly deploy a network in their application environments.


SmartMesh Power and Performance Estimator

Power and Performance Estimator SmartMesh networks deliver ultra-low power and >99.999% data reliability over a wide variety of applications. The SmartMesh Power and Performance Estimator spreadsheet enables the user to to input different network shapes, sizes and data report rates and see the estimated network performance, such as average current consumption, latency, network formation time and manager.

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