Wireless Applications

Interoperability Poses Challenges to the Wireless Sensors Markets

January 26, 2007

As wireless sensor networks proliferate, the need for interoperability between multi-vendor systems and devices becomes more acute.


DUBLIN, Ireland--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Research and Markets has announced the addition of Frost & Sullivan's new report: World Wireless Sensors and Transmitters Markets to their offering.

This Frost & Sullivan research service titled World Wireless Sensors and Transmitters Markets provides a detailed analysis on the various wireless sensors and transmitters that cater to a number of end-user segments In this research service, Frost & Sullivan's analysts examine the following sectors: home and building automation, industrial automation, aerospace defense and homeland security, healthcare, food and agriculture, energy and power, water and wastewater, inventory control and smart shelves, shipping, handling, smart containers, highway transportation and automotives, and OEMs.

Frost & Sullivan analysts examine the following market sectors in this research:

By Application:

  • Big Four - Temperature, Pressure, Flow, and Level Sensors & Transmitters
  • Humidity sensors
  • Gas Sensors
  • Biosensors
  • Acceleration, Vibration & Velocity Sensors
  • Position
  • Proximity
  • Photoelectric

By Technology:

  • Wireless
  • Bluetooth
  • Zigbee
  • RFID
  • Fieldbus
  • Integrated Chip Technologies

The following technology is covered in this research:

Wireless Sensor Networks. Wireless sensor networks combine the physical space we live in and cyberspace into one seamless entity. Wireless sensor networks enable sensing of physical qualities from the real world environment and passing it on through higher levels of information channels such as gateways to data aggregators and other data management tools. The technology behind wireless sensor networks has evolved over a period of time, and with recent developments in the wireless space it is now possible to have small sized devices that sense physical quantities such as flow, pressure and temperature.

Market Overview
With their proven reliability, cost effectiveness, and ability to offer real world solutions in industrial scenarios, wireless sensors are beginning to find application in every conceivable application both in the shop floor arena as well as end-user comfort. Wireless sensors are rapidly gaining a foothold in various industrial sectors such as building and industrial automation, home control, and medical devices and dramatic improvements in their reliability are also paving way for their use in data collection and system monitoring applications. Early on, the use of wireless sensors and transmitters is likely to be most prevalent in monitoring and equipment maintenance applications, gradually spreading across to supervisory control applications. However, it is also important to note that that their use in highly critical process monitoring such as real time and safety process control applications is unlikely in the beginning.

With respect to the major drivers for wireless sensors and transmitters markets, their ease of accessibility in building automation has been a key stimulant for deployment. Adoption of wireless technology in building automation has increased considerably, delivering significant benefits including reduced deployment and maintenance costs and increased scalability. Moreover, wireless sensing is of crucial use in hard-to-reach or hard-to-wire applications that are typical in many old buildings, such as museums, factory floors, and remote job sites. In the industrial automation space, the largest opportunity for wireless sensor networks is as sensing devices in remote or inaccessible areas such as nuclear plants, oil and gas fields, and high temperature furnaces, explains the analyst of this research service. Among the various sensors, pressure temperature and flow sensors remain the dominant technologies with wireless flow sensors and transmitters generating the largest revenues.

Interoperability of Multi-vendor Equipment Pose Challenges
While the deployment of wireless sensors has been a growing phenomenon, issues related to the interoperability of multi-vendor equipment remain a critical challenge for participants in the global wireless sensors and transmitters markets. Wireless communication technology can witness success only if the network and mobile equipment of different vendors can communicate. This need for multi-vendor interoperability creates significant challenges related to the design aspect and is further aggravated due to the embedding of proprietary software. In the coming years, single box solutions are likely to be widely used, heightening the need to develop interoperable equipment on a large scale. Further, it is necessary that these equipment incorporate plug and play options for better acceptance and greater ease of use.

Wireless sensor can be deployed almost anywhere at exceptionally low cost, when compared to a wired system. With the ongoing advances in embedded systems and wireless technology, the hardware used is also becoming increasingly inexpensive and widely available. Further, these devices confirm to industry standards such as the IEEE 802.15.4 for radio communication hardware and the emerging ZigBee standard for networking among devices, boosting adoption rates among end-user communities. Simple and inexpensive to use, the ZigBee standard addresses mesh and star network topologies and is seen as the potential communication protocol that could address many of the needs of wireless sensing, says the analyst. Of late, the most notable breakthrough in the wireless sensors and transmitters market has been the move toward a DeviceNet capable system, where the wiring is reduced down to the DeviceNet bus connection.

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Contacts
Research and Markets
Laura Wood, Senior Manager
press@researchandmarkets.com
Fax: +353 1 4100 980


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