How the Open Source technologies can help your city to become an better place to live
PlovdivConf, (C) 2018 Released under CC BY-SA-3.0
How the Open Source technologies can
help your city to become an better
place to live
Tsvetan Usunov – owner of OLIMEX Ltd,
an company established 27 years ago in
Plovdiv, Bulgaria. Dealing with electronics,
open source hardware and software and
with many customers all around the world.
People love FOSS/OSHW, as they learn
while looking at how people has solved
Even people who do not make FOSS/
OSHW love to learn new stuff.
(for the end user)
When one product is Open source the price
is under pressure. If the author can't
manufacture effectively, competitors step in
and prices fall.
Security for the business, which uses
OSHW, that the product will be available
even if the author stop manufacturing it.
Everything is open and can be produced as
long as there is demand.
Open Source products allow modifications
and tailoring to anyones needs.
End customer has full control over the code
and documentation, everything is open,
everyone can check the code and
hardware and if there are defects to be
fixed on time.
Open Source allow better products to be
By opening the design you can benefit from
your customer enthusiasm, free
consultations and tips how to improve it.
Your customers accept these products like
their own, as they contribute during the
design. You have not just buyers, but
collaborators which supports you.
You share knowledge, but also learn at the
You show to the world, how good designer
you are and your capabilities.
Even if everything else is equal, when you
open your design you give to your
customers more value for your product.
End user is not dependant from single
source, having all documentation makes
easy the maintenance and repairs.
Once done it can be scaled and multiplied.
If you are passive user, without capability to
modify and develop this product may be not
exactly what you are looking for.
Even in this case you have options:
- to wait someone, who can do design and
develop and have same as your needs to
do this for you free of charge;
- or to pay to someone to make the
modifications you need and other people to
benefit from your paid contribution.
So ... How to make our city smart and
better place to live?
LoRa (Long Range) technology was
developed in Europe by French company
named Cycleo. They have been bough by
Semtech in 2012.
Long Range: communication up to 10-15
km in free air, up to 1-2km in the city. Allows
mid size city to be covered with only few
No subscription and and data traffic taxes.
Radio technology easy to install and
Low consumption, no need for external
power supply, can work on battery for
Secure communication, uses Chirp Spread
Spectrum modulation, which is used for
satelite and military communication for
decades. Very hard to jam. The receiver
can receive signals which are under the
Encrypted connection with AES 128.
Long Range ;) When many nodes are in
their reach they can interference. One node
transmit between 0.056 and 1.4 seconds.
Maximum 48 nodes can be received by the
Gateway at the same time. So the
theoretical maximum is 857 devices to talk
Low data transmission speed 300-5500
bps, small data payload up to 50 bytes.
Interractive buttons. Call for
help, for hotels - taxi call.
Over the air updatable e-
labels for storage and retail
Home security, fire, motion sensors.
Remote watering of green areas.
What is available
130+ different products in range
$12 - $500
One of most popular is RN2483
active 40mA, sleep 25 uA
(but Errata says up to 100-150 uA – less than
6 months on battery)
popular among hobby - R95W
transciever $4.70-$6.50, do not use
Semtech IC, no certification
What is on the market
Cisco, Kerlink, Lorier $xxxx
TTG EUR 300
Cheapest solution RAK831 no
server, no antenna about $150
Why these Gateways are so expensive?
Semtech is single source for LoRa
gateway ICs and sells SX1301 Gateway
DSP for $50 / 1000 pcs
So there will be no cheap under $100
gateway anytime soon.
What if you do not want to implement
LoRaWAN but just LoRa network.
Then you do not need Gateway, you can
use single LoRa note to communicate
with all other – the disadvantage you
have to make your own protocol and to
poll the nodes. Works for small local on-
The good news:
We work on OSHW LoRa and
Based on Semtech SX1276,
with embedded and external
Target price EUR 5.00
How you can help?
- if you are good in software – you can
join TTN development
- if you are good in hardware- join our
project with ideas and tips
- or develop your own FOSS app which
ises LoRa and LoRaWAN