iWSN OnWorld

Adoption of wireless sensor network (WSN) technologies is driving growth for the industrial Internet of Things, according to a recently published report by global IoT market research firm ON World.

“Today’s WSN and associated cloud technologies provide the key elements for the industrial IoT: multi-year battery-powered wireless nodes, IP addressability, fieldbus tunneling and cloud-based provisioning and management systems,” says Mareca Hatler, ON World’s research director.

Short range wireless mesh technologies such as WirelessHART and ISA100.11a as well as WiFi, Bluetooth and proprietary solutions will make up the majority of the market over the next five years but adoption of Low Power Wide Area Network (LPWAN) technologies such as LoRa, Sigfox, LTE-M1 and NB1 will increase even faster.

ON World’s latest survey on WSN and IoT with 180+ industrial automation professionals was completed in collaboration with the International Society of Automation (ISA). The survey found steady growth for the wireless mesh standards but there is also a strong awareness and early adoption of LPWAN solutions. Satisfaction with WSN solutions has increased overall but improvements are needed for battery life, costs, system integration and network range.

LPWAN technologies are disrupting industrial IoT markets with cloud connected, 10-year battery-powered wireless sensors and asset trackers that can communicate up to 20 miles. Two in 5 of the survey respondents are researching or developing LPWAN solutions.

For process automation, WirelessHART has the largest market share but ISA100.11a adoption is growing faster largely due to its more flexible time scheduling, software tunneling and support for star and mesh topologies. These features are especially important for growing wireless applications such as gas detection, steam trap monitoring as well as oil and gas wellsite remote monitoring.

Wireless sensing, tracking and control equipment and associated services will reach $35 billion over the next five years for industrial automation, agriculture, construction and related markets.

ON World’s recently published report, “Industrial Wireless Sensor Networks,” includes 5-year market size forecasts for WSN equipment and services in 12 market segments with breakdowns by application, technology, product segment and geography; the survey results; an extensive technology review and a competitive analysis of 100+ companies.

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