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The Wi-fi Mine Web site – Cisco Blogs

Pattern Overview

Wi-fi know-how has been a vital a part of each mine web site for years. Nonetheless, selecting which sort of wi-fi has change into extra complicated with the alternatives of Wifi, LTE, 5G, LoRaWAN, and a number of mounted wi-fi or mesh choices. This doc will place every of those applied sciences for his or her most dear use instances so that you just’re not annoyed through the use of the unsuitable software for the job you’ve got.

Wifi Beginnings

The wi-fi know-how that’s most generally deployed in mining at the moment is Wifi. It’s a pure selection as a result of so lots of the units we use on daily basis depend upon Wifi for connection. This works effectively for all IT and OT purposes like workflow administration, asset administration, and plenty of extra. As management system components and measurement units began to go wi-fi, most of those are produced with Wifi radios inbuilt.

Wifi is comparatively cheap and doesn’t require any particular spectrum license to function. This makes it straightforward to deploy initially, however we’ve seen a couple of challenges begin to emerge. As a result of Wifi operates above 1GHz within the RF spectrum, it will possibly carry numerous information however it doesn’t go very far. If it is advisable to cowl a big mine web site, you will have tons of of entry factors to get into each nook. In case you are connecting from one thing that strikes then your utility will must be okay with the disruptive handoff between entry factors as effectively.

These two necessities of protection and seamless handoff begin to push mine operators towards different wi-fi applied sciences and that is what we’ll speak about subsequent.

Mesh for Seamless Handoff

The primary applied sciences that grew to become widespread leverage a lot of the Wifi know-how, however they alter some elementary elements that forestall seamless handoff. One firm that did this effectively began in Italy underneath the identify Fluidmesh and so they’ve demonstrated seamless handoff at speeds that exceed 200km/h with zero dropped packets. It could possibly carry numerous information together with video for remote-control purposes or geological information switch to and from the mine face. The problem of protection is much like Wifi, however it offers bullet proof handoff between entry factors and has numerous information capability.

LTE for Protection

As wi-fi proved an increasing number of helpful, mining firms had been in search of methods to cowl as a lot of the mine as potential. LTE and 5G have giant protection areas, work effectively for numerous units, and have reasonable to excessive information capability relying on the character of the deployment. This appears like precisely what’s wanted. Sadly, they’re complicated methods that value hundreds of thousands of {dollars} to deploy only one service supplier tower. Reworking these giant methods right into a mining setting isn’t easy and generally, mine websites must aquire an working license from the communications regulator within the space. A number of mining firms have determined the advantages outweigh the challenges of LTE and are studying lots about the place it matches their operation and the place it struggles.

LoRaWAN for IoT Sensors

LoRaWAN additionally offers protection to giant areas and is a superb match for sensors that want lengthy battery life and solely transmit small intermittent information streams. Cisco and others have packaged this know-how right into a easy service that’s straightforward to deploy with a rising assortment of sensors. There isn’t a license to aquire it and the prices to deploy are very low. Even when different wi-fi applied sciences exist within the space, it might nonetheless make sense to place in a LoRaWAN system for particular use instances.

Business POV

Firms like Cisco are making the deployment of those methods simpler and extra built-in into community operations. For instance they’re integrating the LTE administration and safety insurance policies into the broader enterprise setting that Cisco has expertise with. That is Cisco’s strategy in all 4 wi-fi domains talked about earlier. Wi-fi is one a part of the general infrastructure and must be managed that method as a lot as potential.


There you’ve got it, a whirlwind tour of the wi-fi applied sciences commonest in mining at the moment. Every wi-fi know-how has an essential function in mining operations and all wi-fi domains collectively are half of a bigger infrastructure. Cisco views all infrastructure as an built-in structure and believes that mining firms wish to function it that method as effectively.


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