Friday, 7 February 2014

Customer-configurable 4G LTE cellular router!

Conel, a subsidiary of B&B Electronics, has expanded its family of rugged wireless communications routers with the 4G LTE LR77 v2 Cellular Router which takes advantage of the fast data transfer speeds (up to 100Mbit/s for download, 50 Mbit/s for upload) of the LTE cellular network. Built for industrial applications that demand speed, security and the ability to handle large data loads, the LR77 wirelessly connects M2M equipment and devices via an Ethernet interface 10/100 or a serial interface to the Internet or intranet. The unit offers multiple port configurations, a dual SIM card option, and either a plastic or metal casing. A wide operating range (-30 to 60 degrees C), DIN-Rail mounts, and automatic firmware updates allowing mass configuration of many routers simultaneously make the LR77 perfect for M2M connectivity in harsh or remote environments.

Applications that depend on secure wireless communications technology with performance and reliability at the very “edge” of networks would include: traffic and security camera systems, automatic teller machines (ATMs) and other self-service terminals, wind power plants, solar panels, oil/gas/water distribution networks and grids, and sensors that monitor geological, environmental and weather conditions.

Standard features on the 4G LTE LR77 Router include: one Ethernet 10/100 port, one USB host port, one digital input/output (I/O) port, and one SIM card. The unique dual SIM card option provides redundancy should one network fail, and enables users to proactively manage their data plan expenses between wireless carriers.

Customer-configurable interface options include:
Port 1 can be Ethernet 10/100, serial RS-232/RS-485/RS-422/MBUS, or I/O
Port 2 can be either serial RS-232/RS-485/RS-422/MBUS, or I/O
3 additional 10/100 Ethernet ports can be added with an optional port expansion board

The LR77 is configurable by a secure, password-protected web interface. It allows VPN tunnelling, using IPsec, OpenVPN and L2TP technologies to ensure safe communication. The web interface tracks the router’s activities, signal strength, and provides a detailed log. The cellular router supports DHCP, NAT, NAT-T, DynDNS, NTP, VRRP, HTTPS, SSH, OSPF, RIP, BGP control by SMS and more.

Diagnostic functions such as automatic inspection of PPP connections, automatic restart when connections are lost, and a hardware-monitoring “watchdog” ensure continuous communication. A special start-up script window is available for inserting Linux scripts for various actions.

Another key feature is the ability to create four different profiles/configurations in one router. This provides the option to switch between operating profiles, either remotely via SMS or locally via I/O, in order to perform tasks like diagnostics or alternative network configurations...

Conel’s routers are designed for “plug-and-play” simplicity. Firmware-Over-The-Air (FOTA) technology allows automatic wireless firmware updates for mass configuration of many routers at once, eliminating the need for on-site technician visits. Conel can also develop user modules that modify router behaviour per customer requirements. A built-in SIM recognition driver recognizes the unit and configures the internal cellular modem automatically, simplifying integration.

Conel is manufacturing its 4G LTE LR77 Router for geographies where LTE networks exist; and is testing applications with customers where LTE is expected, but not yet available. Conel is also working with parent company B&B Electronics’ engineers to certify its entire portfolio of cellular routers and gateways to bring to North American customers.

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