The monitoring of power consumption has become of a great interest
in recent years as well as the innovative technologies available to realize
Wireless Sensor Networks (WSNs) have experienced a great growth. While smart
metering technologies for electric energy are already established, as sensors
power supply comes directly from power lines, WSN nodes for gas metering should
necessarily be equipped with long life batteries. The presented work describes
a new prototypal low cost WSN designed ad hoc for gas smart metering. The
network has a star topology: each sensor node can be completely integrated with
standard reed relay gas meter, and it is capable to measure the gas
consumption. The information is sent to the central node (the Access Point,
AP) through an RF links. The sensor nodes have been designed with custom
electronics and a proprietary firmware, in order to work with a common 3.6 V
lithium battery which is able to ensure a life period of about 10 years for
each node. Only the AP must be connected directly to electric power. The AP is
connected through the RS-232 interface to a control embedded PC equipped with a
LAMP (Linux, Apache, MySQL, PHP) framework: it stores all the information
coming from each node in a coherent database and allows authorized
users to check the network status using a web interface. The WSN is
self-learning and it is capable to detect new nodes joining the network without
altering the normal operative flow. Moreover e-mail and SMS alerts can be activated
to alert if a node is disconnected from the network or some problems occur. A
first prototype of the WSN has been already tested achieving good results.
Cite this paper
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