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Connecting Networks and Edge Computing on the Itron Network

If you have a need to integrate existing networks or devices as part of your effort, Itron has a solution for you. This is often the case with Smart City and other IOT initiatives where large investments may have been made in IPV4 networks or low performing IOT network solutions. Most protocols can be integrated and their data transported on Itron's network. 

This is made possible with the innovative use of an IOT Edge Router with the Core Snappy Linux development environment. The Linux on an edge router is also the perfect place for edge compute applications such as video processing, parking management and many other edge applications.

The IOT Edge Router is the perfect device for either of these technical challenges. The IOT Edge Router has onboard RAM and flash memory, CPU and multiple interfaces. The IoT Edge Router is a hardware device that enables developers to securely connect a variety of IOT, city and utility devices—including those that require legacy protocol support— across a common RF mesh network infrastructure using proven open standards and interfaces, and networking protocol support.

 

Here are just a few use case examples:

  • Smart street lighting controllers
  • Street lighting controls paired with IP cameras, acoustic and environmental sensors enabling increase in lighting during high traffic events by processing information at the edge
  • Coordinated traffic and metered on-ramp signaling
  • Digital signage such as AMBER alert signs, bus stop and information kiosks, and EV charging stations
  • Video processing for parking, security, surveillance, queue management and accident investigations
  • Environmental sensing for air quality control or flood detection
  • Seismometers for earthquake prediction or early alert systems
  • Modem replacement

 

Working configuration scenarios

  • Ipv4 modem replacement –  limited to the range of 192.168.16.2 – 127 for network IP devices.
  • Ipv6 modem replacement – in configured iot prefix /64
  • WAN mode (including Milli devices) - provides mesh data backhaul to back-office software. Ethernet interface (Eth0) acts as dhcp client when in WAN mode.
  • Client mode - ethernet acts as DHCP client for desktop development with connection to the internet

 

Current known limitations

  • No software watchdog available.
  • No OTA snap updates
  • No Factory reset
  • No ability to update the kernel image
  • No ability to provide automatic NIC FW updates (can only update NIC FW using ssh & manual update)
  • No ability to change IoTR Edge Static IP address or the DHCP Range in Edge mode. IoTR will have IP address 192.168.16.1 and is limited to network device IP addresses in the range 192.168.16.2 – 127.
  • Limited web portal configuration options
  • Limited remote SSH Access
  • Limited ability to switch networks – requires manual configuration
  • Launching ssnmode.confstat application to change modes via different terminals may output unusable info. Also various keyboard input issues related to this application.
    • Alternate method to change mode if ssnmode.confstat is not performing as expected (due to keyboard or terminal display).
    • Edit /var/snap/ssnmode/current/iotrswitch.conf file and change the desired mode.
    • Then restart the service ($ sudo systemctl restart snap.ssnmode.ssnmode.service).

Open Protocols Supported

This is a list of common connection protocols supported, however nearly any protocol that can be connected through the interfaces provided with the IOT Edge Router can be used.

  • IPV4/IPV6
  • RS 232/485
  • BLE, BT4.0
  • 802.11 (800/900MHz, 2.4GHz)
  • 802.15.4 (6LowPan/Zigbee/Thread)
  • Cellular

 

Technology

 

 

  • Itron Network Addressing:
    • IPV6/IPV4 Connectivity with whatever protocol you choose
    • RF Dual Band Mesh 800/900MHz 2.4GHz

 

  • Interfaces:
    • Ethernet (10/100)
    • USB 3.0 x 2
    • HDMI Output

 

  • Development Environment: Core Snappy Linux

 

Steps to Getting Started

 

 

 

 

 

 

  • Simulate your Sensor and Build the Sensor Data Model
    • Use Starfish Studio to model and simulate the sensor data before you begin coding with hardware.

 

 

  • Reference Application
    • Learn how to write an edge application on the IoT Edge Router with the IOT Router Temperature Sensor Example Application. This is an example application ffor a temperature sensor implemented as a Core Snappy app on the IOT Edge Router with BLE temperature sensors.  Source code and instructions included. Demonstrates:
      • How to write a Snap
      • How to read BLE tag data.
      • How to interface with the Data Platform APIs
      • Developing in Client Mode
    • Understand the full end to end connectivity of an IoT Router based cloud solution with the IOT Router Temperature Sensor Reference Solution. This is an end to end reference solution using the IoT Edge Router Temperature Sensor Example Application. The solution includes the Core Snappy BLE temperature sensor application as well as data ingestion into the Data Platform and a Java application to visualize plots of the temperature by leveraging Data Platform APIs.