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Long Range


LoRa stands as a wireless modulation method, evolving from Chirp Spread Spectrum (CSS) technology. It transmits information via radio frequencies utilizing chirp pulses, mirroring communication methods of marine mammals like dolphins and echolocation of bats. The transmission through LoRa modulation is highly resistant to interference and can be effectively received over vast distances.

The technical jargon might seem daunting, but the concepts of LoRa modulation and Chirp Spread Spectrum technology are straightforward when put into practice. For those interested, Richard Wenner's video provides a comprehensive explanation of how Chirp Spread Spectrum technology functions.

LoRa proves to be an optimal solution for systems that need to send small amounts of data at low bit rates. Its capability to transmit data over longer distances surpasses other technologies such as WiFi, Bluetooth, or ZigBee. This attribute positions LoRa as an ideal choice for sensors and actuators working in a low-power environment.

LoRa operates efficiently in license-exempt sub-gigahertz frequency bands like 915 MHz, 868 MHz, and 433 MHz. It is also functional at 2.4 GHz to attain higher data transmission rates, though this may reduce range. These frequency bands are part of the ISM spectrum, designated internationally for industrial, scientific, and medical use.


LoRaWAN serves as a Media Access Control (MAC) layer protocol that is built on the foundational LoRa modulation. It constitutes a software layer that outlines the operational use of LoRa hardware, including transmission timings and message formatting. The development and ongoing updates of the LoRaWAN protocol are overseen by the LoRa Alliance. The initial LoRaWAN specification was published in January 2015. The table provided here illustrates the evolution and version history of the LoRaWAN specifications, highlighting the latest versions as of this writing.

Bandwidth Versus Range

LoRaWAN excels in transmitting small-sized payloads, such as sensor data, over extended distances. LoRa modulation is known for its superior range capabilities with minimal bandwidth usage, outperforming other wireless data transmission technologies. An illustrative figure here compares various wireless data transmission technologies, showcasing their expected transmission ranges against bandwidth.

Why LoRaWAN?

  • Exceptionally Low Power Usage: LoRaWAN devices are designed for low power consumption, with a lifespan of up to 10 years on a single coin cell battery.
  • Impressive Long Range: LoRaWAN gateways boast a transmission and reception range of over 10 kilometers in rural settings and up to 3 kilometers in urban areas.
  • Deep Indoor Coverage: LoRaWAN networks provide extensive indoor coverage, including multi-story buildings.
  • No License Fees: Deploying a LoRaWAN network does not require expensive frequency spectrum licensing.
  • Geolocation Capabilities: LoRaWAN networks can pinpoint device locations using triangulation, eliminating the need for GPS.
  • High Network Capacity: LoRaWAN Network Servers can manage millions of messages from thousands of gateways.
  • Flexible Deployments: Both public and private LoRaWAN networks are easily deployable using the same set of hardware and software.
  • Secure Communication: End-to-end security is assured through AES-128 encryption between devices and application servers.
  • Over-the-Air Updates: Firmware updates for applications and LoRaWAN stacks can be remotely administered.
  • Seamless Roaming: Devices on LoRaWAN networks can effortlessly switch between networks.
  • Cost-Effectiveness: The infrastructure is minimal and affordable, with open-source software.
  • Certification Assurance: The LoRa Alliance certification gives users confidence in device reliability and compliance with LoRaWAN standards.
  • Expansive Ecosystem: LoRaWAN boasts a large ecosystem comprising device, gateway, and antenna manufacturers, network service providers, and app developers.

Some chips use in tests

CentIoT Chip SX1278


ESP32-S3FN8 + SX1262