What do you need to know about transmission rates?

By planning and implementing a wireless network, the desired data rates, i.e. transmission speeds, must be considered carefully. The size and topology of the network play a decisive role.

Wireless sensor networks based on IEEE 802.15.4 or Zigbee are typically designed for low data rates with lowest energy consumption. If the packets are transmitted over many hops, the achievable data rate drops. Dynamic routing generates additional overhead.

Gross data rates for IEEE 802.15.4 are 20 kbps for 868.3MHz, 40 kbps for 915 MHz band, and 250 kbps for 2.4GHz ISM band, which is sufficient for most of applications.

For enhanced requirements, the robust BPSK or O-QPSK modulation can be replaced by higher-value modulation types, such as used in Wi-Fi or LTE.

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