Long-range, low-power communications for IoT: the LoRa technology

Speaker: Daniel Zucchetto, Date: 4th of December 2015, Time: 13:30, Room: 201 (DEI/A)

Abstract. The basis of a IoT system is to be found on the physical connection between the devices in the IoT network. Most of the connections between things have to be done using wireless technologies, since the number of devices to connect is usually large and, in many scenarios, they need to be mobile, e.g., in the case of wearable technologies or for tracking purposes. Multi-hop short-range wireless technologies have been the first enabler of IoT networks. However, these technologies have proven to be inadequate in scenarios where the network must provide a large coverage range, as in Smart City applications. To overcome the shortcomings of multi-hop networks, new technologies have been proposed. They can be grouped in two families: cellular IoT networks and LPWANs and, unlike multi-hop short-range wireless tehcnologies, they allow to connect any device to the IoT network by simply placing it in the desired location and switching it on. This presentation will provide an overview of a LPWAN technology, named LoRa, developed by Semtech Corporation and the LoRa Alliance. In particular, the focus will be on the Medium Access Control and on message forwarding inside the LoRa network. The pros and cons of this technology will be explained, together with examples of possible use cases.