Top 6 Reasons to Deploy Wireless Networking in Industrial Facilities

Wireless technologies offer great value over wired solutions. A reduction in cost is just one of the many benefits of switching to the wireless networking system. There are many benefits, including enhanced management of legacy systems that were previously not possible with a wired networking connection. Here is an overview of some of the value-added benefits of adopting wireless networking in industrial plants.

#6 - Efficient Information Transfer

A significant advantage over wired networks is that the time required to reach a device is reduced. This results in a more efficient transfer of information between network segments that are geographically separated. The industry wireless networking standards use IP addresses to allow remote access to data from field devices.

#5 - Operational Efficiencies

Migrating to wireless networking can help in improving operational efficiencies as well. Plant managers can troubleshoot and diagnose issues more easily. The system facilitates predictive maintenance by allowing the monitoring of remote assets.

#4  - Enhanced Flexibility 

Enhanced flexibility is another reason for deploying wireless networking solutions in an industrial setting. Additional points can be awarded easily in an incremental manner. The wireless system can also integrate with legacy systems without any issues.

#3 - Improved Information Accuracy 

Adopting wireless networking also results in improved accuracy of information. The wireless system is not prone to interferences. As a result, the system ensures consistent and timely transfer of information from one node to another.

#2 - Reduced Installation Costs

Savings in installation costs is the key benefit of a wireless networking system. The cost of installing a wireless solution is significantly lower as compared to its wired counterpart. Installing a wireless network requires less planning. Extensive surveys are not required to route the wires to control rooms. This reduced installation cost is the main reason industrial setups should consider going wireless instead of having a wired networking system.

#1 - Human Safety 

The most significant factor that should influence the decision to migrate to wireless networking is the human safety factor. Wireless technologies allow safer operations, reducing exposure to harmful environments. For instance, a wireless system can be used in taking a reading and adjusting valves without having to go to the problematic area to take measurements.

Analynk Wireless, LLC
(614) 755-5091

Protecting Wireless Infrastructure in Potentially Explosive Environments

Wireless access point enclosure"Built to Blast: Industrial Internet of Things Infrastructure for Hazardous Environments" 

Many chemical, defense, flight line, food processing, fueling, mining, petrochemical, and pharmaceutical applications require high-performance Wi-Fi access in potentially explosive environments. Whether for device telemetry, network access, site-to-site connectivity, or unified communications, these applications require the highest available Wi-Fi performance in the harshest of environments.

Wi-Fi access points can be designed to operate directly in explosive environments without an additional protective enclosure, or they can be designed for use in non-explosive environments and operated inside of an enclosure rated for the application. The former approach is cost-effective when the underlying technology driving the equipment is established, stable, and unlikely to need an upgrade for years; IoT speed, position, pressure, and temperature sensors fall into that category.

The latter approach – using an external enclosure – is the most practical if the underlying wireless technology is changing rapidly. That’s because the cost of purchasing and installing an explosion-proof enclosure can represent from 4 to 20 times the cost of the access point the enclosure is designed to protect. It’s substantially less expensive to swap out the access point, leaving the protective enclosure untouched, than to install a completely new enclosure with every technology upgrade.

In less than ten years the Wi-Fi industry has moved from 802.11n to 802.11ac Wave 1 to 802.11ac Wave 2. Just as no customer would buy a new truck based on a 10 year old design, neither would they consider deploying 802.11n access points based on technology from 2007. At a minimum they would use 802.11ac Wave 1, especially in industrial environments, because of 802.11ac’s outstanding multipath performance in the presence of metal.

Using typical amortization rates a customer that wants to stay abreast of the latest Wi-Fi technology would update equipment roughly once every four years. If we assume that an access point designed for uncontrolled outdoor environments with wide temperature range operation has a List price of $1,500, the associated Class 1 Division 2 enclosure Lists for $3,500, and the installation of just the enclosure (excluding access point set-up and commissioning) costs $2,500, then customers will save $4,500 with every turn of access point technology if the enclosure is retained.

For more information about hazardous area wireless access point enclosures, contact Analynk by calling (614) 755-5091 or visit their website at

Regulations and Standards for Equipment Operating in Explosive Atmospheres

Reprinted from "Built to Blast: Industrial Internet of Things Infrastructure for Hazardous Environmentsby Aruba Networks.  Full text white paper can be downloaded here.

A potentially explosive atmosphere exists when air gas, vapor, mist, or dust – alone or in combination – are present under circumstances in which it or they can ignite under specified operating conditions. Places with potentially explosive atmospheres are called “hazardous” or “classified” areas or locations.

Multiple local and international regulations are in place to mitigate the risk posted by operating networks and IoT devices in potentially explosive atmospheres. Increasingly these regulations are becoming harmonized under a framework developed by the International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC) and European and US standards.

ATEX Directives

ATEX, derived from the French phrase “Atmosphères Explosibles,” is a European regulatory framework for the manufacture, installation, and use of equipment in explosive atmospheres. It consists of two European Union (EU) directives:

  • 1999/92/EC which defines the minimum safety requirements for workers in hazardous areas; and
  • 2014/34/EU which covers equipment and protective systems intended for use in potentially explosive atmospheres.

These two directives define the essential health and safety requirements, as well as the conformity assessment procedures, that need to be applied before products can be used in the EU market.

IEC Ex System (IECEx)

IECEx is a voluntary certification program that validates compliance with IEC standards related to safety in explosive atmospheres. Details about IECEx, its coverage areas, and conformity mark system can be found at

European Committee for Electrotechnical Standardization (CENELEC)

CENELEC was formed to facilitate a consensus-building process between European and international electrical standards activities. In 1996 CENELEC and the IEC formalized a framework of cooperation through an agreement on common standards planning and parallel voting that is known as the Dresden Agreement. As a result of this initiative both CENELEC and IEC have similar standards for explosive environments.

National Electrical Code (NEC)

NEC defines the standards for the safe installation of electrical wiring and equipment in the United States, and its standards are coordinated with those of the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA). NFPA 70 Articles 500 thru 510 address safe practices for the location and operation of electrical equipment in hazardous locations installations.
Additional national standards relating to hazardous environments may be in effect in different countries, however, there has been a concerted effort in recent years to harmonize local standards with the standards referenced above.

About Analynk

Analynk, LLC manufacturers hazardous area wireless access points. More information on their products can be found here.

IIoT (Industrial Internet of Things) Wireless Networking Considerations in Hazardous Environments

Industrial Internet of Things Wireless Networking
Industrial Internet of Things Infrastructure for
Hazardous Environments
Industry groups and standards bodies have collaborated to address these issues by classifying explosive materials and defining standards under which networking equipment and Internet of Things (IoT) devices can be safely operated in their presence. The work has been conducted by different organizations, in different regions, and it can be challenging to understand which standards are applicable under different scenarios.

This white paper examines the different categories of explosive risks, which standards to apply under different scenarios, how network infrastructure can be deployed in explosive environments, and how sensor systems can be integrated with this infrastructure. The goal is to enable end customers and resellers to select the network infrastructure, enclosures, and associated systems that are best suited to each scenario.

Come Visit Analynk, LLC at Aruba Networks Atmosphere '19 on April 1, 2 & 3

Imagine an opportunity to meet and rub shoulders with over 3000 of your peers to learn, collaborate and influence the direction of Aruba products. Only at Atmosphere can you directly interface with those that build the industry’s best enterprise-class technologies in wireless & wired infrastructure and software, security, location services, and analytics & assurance.

Industrial Wireless Security

Industrial Wireless Security
Industrial control systems (ICS) cybersecurity is a branch of general cybersecurity in which the systems being protected have physical characteristics which if compromised can lead to down-time, injury or death, and economic loss.

Industrial control systems include supervisory control and data acquisition (SCADA) systems, localized work-cells, enterprise control systems, and cloud-based factory collection systems. Traditional information technology (IT) systems differ from operational technology (OT) systems primarily in their cybersecurity priorities. In general, IT systems defend against data extractions. Encryption used to provide confidentiality is of primary concern. In OT systems, confidentiality is no longer of paramount concern. While eavesdropping can lead to reverse engineering of proprietary factory methods and design, it is usually more important to keep the factory running. Therefore, technologies must assure that both cybersecurity controls and cyber-attack do not limit or prevent the capability of the factory running with high availability. Table 1 lists the priorities of IT and OT systems. It is important for IT professionals to recognize that wireless security practices used in the office may not be available for factory deployments. If they are available, they may not be desirable to maintain system availability. Securing the industrial network can be summarized in the following considerations:
  • Secure the physical environment; 
  • Secure the end-points; 
  • Secure the controller; 
  • Secure network transmissions/data. 
Industrial wireless networks have the same consideration as wired networks with the addition of protecting the electromagnetic spectrum allocated for the industrial wireless network operation.
Table 1 - Typical Priorities of IT and OT Systems
The number of devices connecting to industrial networks is increasing at a rapid rate. It exposes systems to security breaches and cyberattacks. As a result, security is paramount for industrial operations. Some manufacturers think wireless will create new vulnerabilities in the network that may result in potential threats. Just making the wireless network accessible through a password is not adequate. One key concern is how to identity and eliminate rogue access points. Therefore, wireless intrusion detection systems and intrusion prevention systems are in demand.

In addition, isolation of production devices on a separate network from corporate networks, internet traffic, and phone and surveillance systems is necessary. In other words, one can employ an “island” approach to networking that limits the movement of traffic and devices between islands. By properly segmenting a network, it can limit movement between networks to appropriate devices and block the movement of devices that are unnecessary or provide little value.

Reprinted from Guide to Industrial Wireless Systems Deployments produced by The National Institute of Standards and Technology. A free copy of this entire publication is available here.

The AE902-1 Hazardous Area Class I, Division 2, Access Point Enclosure for Aruba AP-318

The AE902-1 is designed to house the Aruba AP-318 dual band access point for use in the hazardous areas. The enclosure, all hardware and antennas are rated for Class I, Division 2, groups A, B, C, & D. A POE injector and AC to DC power supply, are also included. The enclosure is made of 316 stainless steel and has a NEMA 4X rating for harsh conditions. Optional directional antennas are available and antennas can be mounted up to 150’ away from the enclosure.

Analynk Wireless
(614) 755-5091