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NE 133 Wireless Sensor Networks

Requirements for the Convergence of existing Standards

(PresseBox) (Leverkusen, ) Together with WIB as well as representatives of ISA, HART Communication Foundation and manufacturers of both WirelessHART and ISA SP100 products, NAMUR has published a recommendation on the convergence of the standard for wireless sensor networks, entitled: NE 133 "Wireless Sensor Networks: Requirements on the Convergence of existing Standards".

This NAMUR recommendation is a response to the impending competition between the three standards for wireless sensor networks already in existence. Competing standards for the same applications hamper the successful implementation of technologies, as is graphically demonstrated by the field bus, which to this day has failed to maximise its application potential.

Therefore, the purpose of NE 133 is to define requirements for wireless sensor network standards. The term "wireless sensor network" describes all the devices (sensors, actuators, routers, access points, gateways, etc.) within a network as well as the wireless technology and network characteristics.

The technology employed and solutions from different manufacturers must ensure the provision of the necessary functions and of a secure investment for sustainable use in the process industry. The minimum requirements on the technology and equipment involved are defined to this end. In addition, instructions and recommendations are provided for their implementation in operational practice.

The focus is on the requirements to be met with regard to reliability and availability. Moreover, additional requirements and constraints on the use of wireless communication technology (e.g. coexistence, interoperability and interchangeability) are described taking account of the life cycles of the equipment and technology employed.

This recommendation aims to satisfy different objectives. Firstly, future technological advances must not be hindered by excessively restrictive specifications and, secondly, the requirements set out in this recommendation must enable the operation of wireless networked instrumentation with minimum life cycle costs.

NE 133 documents a broad consensus among users and manufacturers regarding the standardisation of wireless sensor networks. NAMUR expects that this clear statement and the requirements formulated will enable all those involved in the standardisation process to work together constructively with a view to achieving a converged standard.