Design of a reliable but low-cost wireless industrial network system using a bluetooth low energy Mesh network

Djan, Nana Adum Kwabena
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Many modern industrial plants have sensor actuator networks that allow operators on an industrial plant to receive data from sensors and send information to Actuators to operate plants efficiently. Most energy plants in Ghana such as Sony Asogli and Volta River Authorities Tema Thermal complex use guided media as a means of data communication. Guided media which is wired data communication has a couple of drawbacks. Problems with guided media include flexibility in re-arranging the sensor actuator topology in the plant. Another issue is the initial cost of wiring an entire plant. To make data communication between sensor actuators and operators on a plant more flexible in deployment the use of some suitable unguided media must be applied. Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) mesh was the selected wireless media protocol due to its wide range, low power consumption constraints and interoperability due to a good number of devices having Bluetooth capability. My setup included multiple ESP 32 node MCU microcontrollers and a BLE compatible phone. Data from sensors could be received over long distance in real time using a flood mesh hopping algorithm. The experiment was a success and proved that BLE mesh can be used as a replacement for the traditional wired sensor networks.
Capstone Project submitted to the Department of Engineering, Ashesi University in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the award of Bachelor of Science degree in Electrical and Electronic Engineering, May 2020
machine2machine communications, Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) mesh protocol