Device-level Interoperability in UWB RTLS enabled by the omlox Core Zone v2 Specification

Device-level Interoperability in UWB-based Real-Time-Locating-Systems enabled by the omlox Core Zone v2 Specification

Digitalizing industrial sites and manufacturing floors can provide significant productivity gains. Although digital use-cases and applications see an increasing adoption, they often lack a proper basis of data and, hence, rely on an ongoing manual effort in feeding digital signals. The ability to locate objects, assets or people in real-time in an industrial space, creates the perfect data foundation for digital twins in a cyber-physical system.

Therefore, real-time locating systems (RTLS) see an increasing interest in industrial environments, logistics, health care, retail, transportation, and others. RTLS usually consist of fixed infrastructure devices (called satellites or anchors) and mobile devices (called tags) to be tracked. Satellites and tags communicate with each other (e.g., via a radio like for GNSS/GPS or Bluetooth Low Energy) enabling either satellites to determine the position of tags (i.e., tracking) or enabling tags to locate themselves (i.e., self-location).

In recent years, ultra-wideband (UWB) radio stood-out to become the leading technology for indoor (but not limited to indoor) RTLS. In contrast to other narrow-band or wide-band radio technologies, UWB is an impulse-radio that uses extremely sharp pulses of a few nanoseconds. This enables UWB-systems to measure distances at cm-level precision and high robustness. Several distances can be combined to determine a position.

This white paper complements the “An Overview of Ultra-WideBand (UWB) Standards (IEEE 802.15.4, FiRa, Apple): Interoperability Aspects and Future Research Directions” paper by Coppens et.al. on Multiple Access Schemes and Vendor Interoperability.

About the Authors

Franz Lehmann - CTO of Trumpf Tracking Technologies GmbH

Before joining TRUMPF Tracking Technologies, Franz initiated and established TRUMPF’s corporate venture capital unit, investing in various startups, now resulting in a portfolio of more than 15 companies. Franz has a background as strategy consultant for international projects (in particular digitalization and growth strategies) at McKinsey. In addition to a German computer science degree and a French engineering degree, he holds an MBA from the Collège des Ingénieurs.

Erik Mademann - CEO of ZIGPOS GmbH

Erik shapes ZIGPOS as a co-founder and CEO since its inception in 2011, when he got inspired from his participation in the largest EU funded R&D project on UWB. Erik, together with his colleague and co-founder Christoph Götze, was involved in technology and product development, production as well as product management and now focusses on business and company development. Erik holds a German engineering degree from the Dresden University of Applied Sciences.

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