Online Wireless Field Network Planning Tool

Jim Cahill

Chief Blogger, Editor

If you have wireless field devices in your plant, you may be already familiar with the planning tool, AMS Wireless SNAP-ON application. It helps you plan your IEC 62591 WirelessHART network and compare the plan to best design practices. And once the network is online, it provides reporting, power module management, and graphical troubleshooting.

I mention this because I heard from Emerson’s Nicholas Meyer, a member of the Asset Optimization team. Nick shared with me that they are launching a free, web-based Wireless Planning Tool to help you get started with a design. If your process is located indoors, you could also upload a plot plan you likely already have.

Here’s a quick, 2:45 “how to” demo showing how you can use the wireless planning tool.

The video shows how you can upload an image (or even download a Google Map satellite image if your plant is outdoor). It shows how to set the plan dimensions, using the scale tool against a known dimension in the image. You can drag and drop Wireless gateways and wireless devices. The video shows how you can check your plan versus best practices and it shows a red circle where a condition, such as not having 5 wireless neighbors for the wireless gateway. By adding a few more devices within the range of the gateway, you can have this best practice satisfied.

You can also set specification limits, device heights, and other parameters, including your own design guidelines.

Everything showed in the video was open and freely accessible. It does not require any login information. Should you wish to save away your work, you can log into the application and save. It will be available for you the next time you log in.

The online tools allows planning for up to 25 devices, to provide you with best practices and feedback on how robust your network would be, based on the wireless device distances and locations.

Give the Wireless Planning Tool a try if you’d like to do a quick assessment of how a wireless field network would work at your facility.

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The opinions expressed here are the personal opinions of the authors. Content published here is not read or approved by Emerson before it is posted and does not necessarily represent the views and opinions of Emerson.