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R3 Communications: Wireless but still safe

Wireless has not played much of a role to date in safety applications. Berlin startup R3 Communications wants to change this, with EchoRing, a deterministic and hi-rel realtime wireless system.

Die beiden Geschäftsführer von R3 Communications Bildquelle: © R3 Communications

The two managing directors of R3 Communications, Dr Mathias Bohge (right) and Florian Bonanati, with the EchoRing test system obtainable from year‘s end through the company webshop.

The basis of the EchoRing approach is software technology developed by R3 Communications, setting up on a logical token ring. In this case the token packet (help packet to control deterministic channel access) is also used as an exchange platform for channel states. “By the complete channel knowledge produced here it‘s possible to determine for every transmission a perfect node (a ‘buddy‘) for any necessary repetition. So each node can potentially support every other node, which is why it‘s called ‘massive cooperation‘“, explains Dr Mathias Bohge, one of the two managing directors of R3 Communications. In this way, using standard wireless modules, it is possible to achieve a deterministic system reaction time of the order of one millisecond, and availability of communication of as much as 99.9999999%. At the show the Berlin-based company, after two years of development, is presenting its first series product called EchoRing Radio Board. Developed together with Schleicher Electronic, it serves as the basis of a Schleicher HMI where consumer tablets using Profisafe can be outfitted for wireless safety applications. The wireless hardware here is based on technology from Texas Instruments, with whom R3 Communications cooperates closely.

Ultimately the technology can be used wherever cables are too vulnerable or inflexible. And management colleague Florian Bonanati adds, “What‘s more, hirel wireless communication can create new application scenarios, like closed-loop robot control from the edge cloud.“