Recently Released Market Dynamics Study on
Industrial Wireless Sensor Networking

San Diego, CA, June 30/ PR Newswire -- Demand for wireless sensor networking in the industrial sector is increasing, largely due to anticipation for the increased reliability and scalability of mesh networking, according to research firm ON World. With thousands of nodes per network to be commonplace within five years, ON World forecasts that 168 million nodes could be deployed in 2010 for a $5.9 billion end user market.

"High return on investment, low replacement costs and the ever-increasing pressure to cut costs, makes wireless sensor networking especially suited for industrial networking," says Charlie Chi, a senior analyst with ON World. In fact, he notes that wireless sensor networking was the theme at Sensors Expo a few weeks ago in Detroit, Michigan.

By reducing wiring costs by 50 to 70 percent, wireless sensor networks enable real-time data sharing throughout a facility, leading to increased industrial efficiency and productivity. Mesh networking in particular provides many advantages such as large-scale networks, real-time monitoring and new applications that were not previously possible.

Initially, wireless sensor networks will be targeted at monitoring applications displacing wired systems such as DeviceNet, Modbus and Fieldbus, etc. Far from frivolous, these applications provide companies with a competitive advantage by saving millions of dollars per year in maximized equipment lifetimes, process optimization and prevention of unplanned downtimes. ON World reports that many industrial companies can save up to ten times the initial investment per year, with very little downside.

Mesh Wireless Sensor Networking
By increasing reliability, robustness and flexibility while significantly reducing overall costs, mesh wireless sensor networking promises to revolutionize wireless networking in the fault-intolerant world of industrial process automation.

The Advantages

The major advantages of mesh wireless sensor networking include the following:

  • Lower Costs - At least 50% less for wiring with additional savings associated with maintaining, troubleshooting and upgrading networks. For factories with 100,000s of square feet, the potential savings are enormous.
  • Improved Installation - Networking in hazardous areas while reducing labor/configuration costs and complexity.
  • Maintenance - Reduced time and labor cost involved in inspecting, testing, troubleshooting, repairing and replacing wires. Mesh networks can self-heal and self-configure, which provides more robustness and reliability.
  • Reduced Connector Failure - Wireless sensors eliminate connectors which are the source of most network failures.
  • Improved Flexibility - Reconfigurable networks makes remote monitoring and control easy, even for areas or equipment that would not normally be networked.

Mesh networking will facilitate the adoption of two major industrial trends:

1) Real-time Process Equipment Monitoring: Benefits include greatly improved knowledge about equipment status, prevention of unplanned process failures, reduced energy costs and maximized equipment lifetimes.

2) Distributed Networking: Benefits include scalability, real-time processing and modular troubleshooting.

New ZigBee "I" Working Group

Increased awareness of mesh networking and the upcoming ZigBee standard is helping to counter end-user concerns about wireless technologies in general. With the first ZigBee specification expected by the end of the year and a recently formed Working Group, ZigBee "I," set to develop profiles specifically for industrial applications, many OEMs are ramping up their development efforts. More than 1.3 million RFICs are predicted to ship this year for industrial applications with many of these part of a development kit.

At first, companies in industries with expensive equipment and processes such as power generation, chemical and petrochemicals will have the most incentive to adopt wireless sensor network technologies. Soon however companies in all industries will adopt wireless sensor network technology in order to stay competitive. Large scale deployments by OEMs such as ALSTOM, Eaton, General Electric, Honeywell, RAE Systems and Tyco Thermal Controls are expected by the end of 2005. ON World predicts that within five years, mesh wireless sensor networking will become widespread in factories, refineries and manufacturing plants worldwide.

More information about ON World's report is available from:

About ON World:
ON World provides world class business intelligence on emerging wireless technology markets for Fortune 1000 companies, venture capitalists and startups. More information about ON World's research services and products may be found from

Media Contact: Mareca Hatler, eMail
Phone: 858.259.2397

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