In this article:
What is an IoT Gateway and what does it do?
The world is quickly becoming connected with the things around us. We use IoT Gateways to make sense of Big Data making our world more efficient.
An IoT Gateway is typically a small form factor embedded computer with enough storage, memory and processing power to receive and manage data from various sources and in differing protocols via requisite I/O or over wireless networks. IoT gateways are concerned with device connectivity, protocol translation, data filtering and processing, security, updating or any other such information management tasks
The aim of an IoT gateway is to make sense of all the data (Big Data) which is available from connected ‘things’ on a desired network. These ‘things’ can be factory machinery, renewable energy technology, vehicles, household appliances or any device of any kind with useful data to obtain and digest. Sensors connected to all of these ‘things’ collect data such as speed, temperature, fuel levels, noise, vibration, light, timings and so on. An IoT gateway then processes this data at the EDGE (closer to the data source) of this activity, distributing the information or even reacting to learned outcomes.
An IoT gateway receives the data from these sensors which can be in the form of any number of protocols such as Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, serial, Ethernet, ZigBee, LoRa, Profibus etc. A gateway can then translate the data into the desired format/s and distribute said data. Information can be kept within a network or sent to the Cloud to be remotely accessed. The result via bespoke software is a visual depiction of how every ‘thing’ is performing on your network, allowing users to monitor, evaluate and control systems from their desk or mobile device without having to check individual device locations. That can be anything from setting the temperature of your house with your cellular phone, monitoring the wind speed, direction and gear lubrication levels of a wind turbine from a control desk, or GPS tracking public transport and relaying live schedule timings to train platforms and bus stops.
IoT Gateway Intelligence
Some IoT gateways have the processing ability to react to the data received and pro-actively communicate with other nodes on the network. The opportunities offered by IoT gateways in dynamic actions are huge. Consider the following examples:
Home Heating – Your heating system has temperature sensors in your house which are directly connected to your heating system. This is nothing new as thermostats have been around for decades. The management and control of your heating is now done via your cellular phone. You can opt to manage your heating by putting your heating on directly from the app. However, with dynamic intelligent systems, rather than you paying constant attention to your heating app, the system tracks your phone via GPS and learns your travel habits and can act accordingly.
Dynamic Action – The heating system can deduce that on a Thursday night you always go to the gym after work for 2hrs and arrive home about 8:30. When you come home, you have a long bath and go straight to bed. After a few weeks of tracking your activity the system reacts to your Thursday schedule and leaves your heating off until 8:30, prepares a tank full of hot water for your bath and sets the temperature of your bedroom for your arrival whilst saving heating in other rooms of the house.
LFG Collection System Safety Monitoring – Landfill gas collection makes use of the methane produced from household waste. Instead of polluting the atmosphere with ozone damaging gas, the systems make use of this by-product to provide clean energy which can power the landfill site or can be sold into the grid. Sensors within the factory and within the ground monitor risks such as high temperatures and smoke, indicating underground fires.
Dynamic Action – The IoT gateway receives information from the exterior sensors and from the LFG collection system. If certain parameters are broken, indicating a fire, the gateway can alert engineers in the field as well as apply emergency operation procedures to machinery within the collection facility.
About Assured Systems
Assured Systems is directed towards the massive growth of IoT and SMART cities. The company supply and integrate IoT and SMART solutions to commercial and industrial projects, which can include everything from home entertainment systems to intelligent embedded computers for factory automation. Our Technical Team are knowledgeable and our reach is truly global with headquarters in the US and the UK. E-mail us on firstname.lastname@example.org or call us on the number below and we are sure to be an asset to any project.