In circumstances where a hardwired connection between the meter(s) and a communication device is not possible, you can use 485Bee radios to wirelessly communicate between the two. It takes at least two 485Bee units in order to set up this type of communication. You can also add more 485Bee nodes to create what is called a mesh network. This allows meters, or strings of daisy chained meters, to all communicate back to a single communication device. The wireless connection can also hop across multiple nodes to extend the range of the mesh network. The diagram below show a mesh network with three nodes. In this case they are connected to v.4 Omnimeters, reading water meters, but the 485Bee will connect to any Omnimeter Model (v.3, v.4, or v.5) and any of our communication devices (EKM Push, EKM Blink, iSerial).
Each 485Bee can connect to between 1 and 128 Omnimeters. You can have an unlimited number of 485Bees in a mesh network. Each 485Bee acts as an RS-485 communication master and as signal boosting node in the mesh network. You can also use intermediate 485Bees as signal boosters which can be either connected or not connected to Omnimeters. The data signal from a meter connected to the wireless mesh can make multiple wireless hops back to the Push. The more nodes that are in the wireless mesh the stronger the mesh will be.
You can expect about a 200 meter range between any two 485Bees, if you have good line of site connection. If you raise your 485Bee off the ground, we have seen 1.5 miles of range using the supplied antennas. Up to 39 miles of range is theoretically possible if you use high gain antennas. Let us know if you need assistance with this.
These are truly plug and play. Connect the 485Bee to 6 VDC to 42 VDC power and connect it to RS485 and it will automatically create a wireless mesh network with other 485Bee nodes that are in range.
More information about mesh networks is available here: