IQRF is a platform for low power, low speed and low data volume wireless connectivity ranging tens and hundreds of meters (up to several kilometres in special cases or in networks) e.g. for telemetry, industrial control and automation of buildings and cities (street lights, parking etc.). It can be used with any electronic equipment, whenever there is a need of wireless transfer, e.g. remote control, monitoring of remotely acquired data or connection of more devices to a wireless network.
Non-networking: Two or more peer-to-peer devices. Packets are accessible for all devices in range. No networking features (routing etc.) except of simple addressing are supported.
Networking: One Coordinator managing the network with up to 239 Nodes. Packets are accessible for addressed Node(s) in given network only. Complex Mesh with automated routing through redundant paths and many other powerful features is supported. DPA works in networking mode only.
Basic IQRF communication component is RF transceiver (TR). The MCU inside is equipped with IQRF operating system (OS) implementing wireless communication, Mesh networking and a lot of other functions and features. Factual functionality is given by additional SW placed by the user into the same internal MCU.
This SW can be an application program written by the user’s design engineer directly under OS in C language.
However, much easier way is to use the additonal SW layer called DPA (Direct Peripheral Access).
Then no programming is needed. The operation is managed just by simple commands. Complete Mesh network application is as simple as sending commands and receiving responses via a UART terminal.
Nevertheless, HWP can also be extended for specific functionality by the user’s design engineer by programming so called Custom DPA handler in C language.
Routing (packet propagation throughout the network) is possible either by the end TRs itself (transparently in background, in addition to normal TRs operation) or by dedicated routers. IQMESH stands for proprietary Mesh implementation utilized in IQRF technology.
Even a standalone TR can implement a lot of simple interfaces. For connectivity to complex standards, either local (USB) or remote (GSM, Ethernet or WiFi) gateways (GW) are available. Universal single board computers like Raspberry Pi are also supported to serve as high performance gateways.
Remote gateway can additionally serve as a datalogger transparently collecting data from end devices in wireless network. It can optionally be connected to Internet/LAN.
The most demanded remote gateway Internet connectivity is via a cloud. IQRF Cloud is a server providing plug-and-play worldwide access to end devices by high level methods which the users are get used to (API and web interfaces, database, …). Using third-party clouds (Bluemix, Azure etc.) is also possible.
IQRF implementation is outstandingly easy not only thanks to sophisticated concept with OS and DPA but also due to efficient development tools (programmers/debuggers, end device hosting kits, test kits etc.) enabling rapid development and solderless prototyping.
IQRF IDE is a powerful SW environment providing all functionality for development, service and maintanance (programming, debugging, testing, network management, visualization, firmware upgrade, manufacturing support etc.).
IQRF wireless can easily be connected to a third-party equipment programmable in C, C++, Python or Java – a Windows or Linux machine, standard embedded device like Raspberry Pi, Arduino, BeagleBone, chipKIT etc., or a proprietary device with a standalone MCU inside. To interconnect the device with TR transceiver solderlessly, various shield and breakout boards are available. But the most powerful aid for such equipment lies in IQRF SDK open source software development package. IQRF Daemon with the multiple communication channels UDP, MQ and MQTT is available for Linux devices.