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Internet of Things Technology based on LoRaWAN Revolution


Abstract and Figures

With the rapid growth of the internet of Things (IoT) paradigm, another important technology appears on the research field that helps in earning a high performance wireless communication between devices, it is called low power wide area network (LPWAN). In the LPWAN technology, there are two categories: Long Rang (LoRa) and narrowband (NB-IoT). LoRa is not only a long-range network; it is also enables the transfer of information with a low transfer rate and low power consumption. Additionally, LoRa wireless area network (LoRaWAN) is a promising technology developed to overcome the IoT applications challenges. In this paper, the main contribution is focus on the revolution of LoRaWAN network technology considering the IoT requirements. Moreover, we show how this revolution is a powerful candidate in addressing and fixing the IoT challenges and obstacles. Finally, we present how LoRaWAN can handle these problems supporting our discussion with the details of the LoRaWAN characteristics.
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Internet of Things Technology based on LoRaWAN
Dina M. Ibrahim
Assistant Professor, Information Technology Dept.
College of Computer, Qassim University
Buraidah, KSA
Abstract—With the rapid growth of the internet of Things
(IoT) paradigm, another important technology appears on the
research field that helps in earning a high performance
wireless communication between devices, it is called low power
wide area network (LPWAN). In the LPWAN technology,
there are two categories: Long Rang (LoRa) and narrowband
(NB-IoT). LoRa is not only a long-range network; it is also
enables the transfer of information with a low transfer rate
and low power consumption. Additionally, LoRa wireless area
network (LoRaWAN) is a promising technology developed to
overcome the IoT applications challenges. In this paper, the
main contribution is focus on the revolution of LoRaWAN
network technology considering the IoT requirements.
Moreover, we show how this revolution is a powerful candidate
in addressing and fixing the IoT challenges and obstacles.
Finally, we present how LoRaWAN can handle these problems
supporting our discussion with the details of the LoRaWAN
Keywords—Internet of Things (IoT), LPWAN, LoRa,
I. I
The near future depends entirely on what is known as
Internet of Things (IoT). It aims to give anything around you
the ability to connect to the Internet and definitely
communicate with other things [1]. In recent years, there
have been many researches on IoT, which has led to its
improvement and development. For example, the spread of
new eras of Smart Cities, Smart Homes, Smart
Transportation, …etc. [2], as shown in Fig. 1.
IoT is an ongoing development of Internet by which
every day and everywhere things and objects have
capabilities of data communication. The proliferation of this
intelligent interconnectivity between the real world and the
digital one makes the term of IoT completely different from
the Internet. This variance is the absence of Human role.
Fig. 1. Internet of Things (IoT) environment and the Internet [2]
Nowadays, traditional wireless networks technologies are
not considered as a best convenient network especially for
the low mobility communication devices those rarely
transmitting short messages in the IoT concept [3]. For this
reason, the so-called low power wide area network
(LPWAN) is designed to achieve the need for low power,
long-range, low bit error rate, and low cost.
Due to the gap between: (i) cellular networks, like GSM,
UMTS, and LTE, and (ii) short range networks, like Wi-Fi,
Bluetooth and ZigBee. There is a growing need to design
LPWAN technologies to fill this gap and to achieve the
requirements of the IoT devices and applications. Although
IoTs include many engaged battery and earned energy
devices but LPWAN can enhance the efficiency of IoT
devices since it has inexpensive low-power transceivers
operates for long durations [4]. The Long Range network
protocol (LoRaWAN) protocol is a LPWAN category that
includes some charged battery devices for establishing the
bidirectional communication [5]. The LoRaWAN
specification confirms the perfect integration between the
IoT objects, without the need for complex local
This paper is organized as follows: after this
introduction, Section II discussed an overview on
LoRaWAN Technology. Section III addresses the
challenges solved by LoRaWAN. Finally, in Section IV, we
draw the conclusion.
Wireless technologies can be classified based on their
range into four ranges, Figure 2 presents the classification of
wireless technologies based on their range. The first is the
contact range, which is proximity and have a range of 0-to-
10 meters, like RFID technology [6].
The second is the short range that known as wireless
personal area network (WPAN) with range from 10-to-100
meters, such as Bluetooth and ZigBee technologies. The
third is the short/medium range, which identified as wireless
local area network (WLAN) with 100-to-1000 meters’ range,
like Wi-Fi networks [6, 7]. Finally, the long range that is our
goal and well known by wireless wide area network
(WWAN) with range up to 100 km, like cellular and
LPWAN. LPWAN technology is one of the most popular
techniques used in WWAN networks. In more deep,
LoRaWAN protocol, which based on LoRa technology, is
the most common low power with long-range network that is
convenient with the current and future age, the IoT era.
2019 10th International Conference on Information and Communication Systems (ICICS)
978-1-7281-0045-6/19/$31.00 ©2019 IEEE
Fig. 2. Classification of wireless technologies based on range [5].
A. LoRaWAN Network Architecture
The majority of LPWAN networks use the star network
topology. Its nature is identified based on one central node,
acts as gateway, and connects with all the other connected
devices [6]. On the other hand, the mesh network topology
consists of individual nodes that propagate data to the other
nodes to raise the range of communication.
The implementation of LoRaWAN network is based on
the star network topology, and mostly, stars-of-stars network.
The benefits of using star topology is preserving battery life
and decreasing the complexity of the network meanwhile the
nodes do not have to propagate or forward other nodes data,
the nodes receives only its own data. Figure 3 illustrates the
architecture of LoRaWAN, which can be divide into front-
end and back-end parts [5, 8]. The front-end part contains
gateway elements and the end nodes. While the back-end
part contains the network servers that is responsible for
checking security, storing the received information, filtering
duplicate packets, and scheduling acknowledgements
through the gateway [9].
Fig. 3. LoRaWAN Architecture [8].
LoRaWAN end-node devices have three modes of
operation, depending on the communication tool employed:
Class A (the default), Class B, and Class C (both optional)
[10]. These three modes describe how the end-node device
can access to a wireless network. Class A focuses on the
upward traffic between the end-node device and the network
server, moreover, it allows bidirectional communication.
Class B and C improving the downward traffice from the
network server to the end-node device by using optional
features. The currently reasearches are looking forward to
improve the perfomance of these classes epecially in saving
battery lifetime and in the packet delivery rate [8].
B. Why LoRaWAN
There are many other LPWAN technologies related to
IoT Communication technologies, which have the same
specification like LoRaWAN. One of these technologies is
the so-called Sigfox protocol [11], Sigfox coverage area is
better than LoRaWAN, besides, it is looking to increase the
worldwide. The reason that makes LoRaWAN better than
Sigfox is mostly that it is open protocol. Another example is
narrow-band (NB-IoT) protocol technology, which have
many features as LoRaWAN like, high frequency band. but,
NB-IoT is not open protocol unlike LoRaWAN [12].
LoRaWAN has also other advantages not included in
NB-IoT including bandwidth scalability, increased power
efficiency, and adaptive data rate. More protocol examples
are similarly on the field as Weightless, NWAVE, OnRamp
wireless, IEEE802.11ah and Dash7 [1, 11, 13, 14], Fig. 4
shows the most commonly LPWAN technologies.
Fig. 4. Low Power WAN (LPWAN) Technologies.
In this Section, we concentrate on the challenges and
obstacles faces the wireless sensor network (WSN) in
general and the IoT specifically. Then, how can the
revolution of LoRaWAN technology dissolve all of them.
A. Challenges and Limitations faced WSN
Wireless sensor networks (WSN) field faced some
challenges and limitations are [5]:
Many difficulties when participating a great
number of sensors;
Appearance of low efficiency and other issues due
to the overcrowded state of Radio Frequency (RF)
The nonexistence of the mathematical models that
help in simulating a huge number of nodes in
The current simulators used for WSN are limited
and inadequate for scalability concerns.
2019 10th International Conference on Information and Communication Systems (ICICS)
B. Challenges and obstacles faced IoT
Most existing available communicating protocols cannot
have handled the challenges and obstacles of IoTs. In this
Subsection, we focus on them.
1) The popular challenges:
Here, the common popular IoTs challenges that stuck the
performance and the development of such technology [15],
these challenges are:
a) Battery life: most of the electronics in the IoT get
their power from some non-rechargeable batteries.
This is due to the cost, convenience, and
availability as well.
b) Range: one of the new technologies goals is to
provide information access to the Internet for
users, devices, or things away from the city. In
order to increase the range, the power should be
c) Bandwidth and Data Rate: are used for
determining the amount of data being transferred
in the network with in a given time. If the
bandwidth increased the data rate will be also
d) Latency: it means how to engage limited resources
to cover and serve different types of traffic flow
under different environments.
2) The popular obstacles:
In this part, we collect the common obstacles that should
be handled for IoT [16]. These obstacles contain
Connectivity, Efficient energy management, Security,
Complexity, and fast-paced development, a brief description
for them are:
a) Connectivity: due to the variety of environment,
one of the most important issue is to ensure the
interconnectivity between different devices
residing in different circumstances.
b) Efficient energy management: since most of the
devices cost are not high, but at the same time, it
is not efficient to replace the battery from time to
other. Therefore, there is a growing need to
improve the energy harvesting.
c) Security: definitely earning high security in one
of the most issues that should not be neglected
and should be taken into consideration. Thus,
effective encryption and authentications protocols
needed to be developed, especially with using the
WSN resources.
d) Complexity: one of the highly complex task is to
integrate between different interconnectivity
capabilities. It is important to discover new
methods increase the usability of these skills.
e) Fast-paced development: everyday and
everywhere hundreds of new devices added to the
extraordinary IoT world. The rapid increase of
the number of IoT nodes will increase its
complexity as well.
With the proliferation of IoT devices and applications
like, smart power grid, e-Learning, Smart cities, Healthcare,
and environment protection, the revolution of the LoRaWAN
technology is a powerful solution in order to help in dissolve
all the previous challenges and obstacles. Table I represents
the characteristics with description in LoRaWAN.
Feature LoRaWAN Description
Quality of Service
LoRaWAN is an asynchronous protocol used
unlicensed spectrum [16].
Its modulation is based on the Chirp-Spread
Spectrum (CSS) modulation technique that
can handle the interference, the multipath,
and the fading problems [17].
LoRaWAN is an unlicensed open protocol.
Has flexible solutions that increase its data
rate adaptation [18].
Bandwidth scalable with establishing bi-
directional communication
Power Consumption
Because LoRaWAN is an asynchronous
protocol, the end node devices can sleep for
small or large amount of time, as the
application device desires [12].
Maximum lifetime
It is a best choice for applications devices
that require low latency with data rate [19].
Increase battery life and latency.
Low power operation
Network Coverage/
The usage of star topology make it deep in
indoor and outdoor coverage areas [16].
Long range communication that is longer
than cellular networks.
A whoke city can be covered by using one
gateway in the LoRaWAN network [20].
This technology reaches greater distances
with low energy consumption.
Cost Policy
Minumal infrastructure with low cost devices
till end nodes.
Suitable for users and can be applied to
decrease cost network deployment [5].
In general, LoRaWAN is considered to
support low cost in different aspect: spectrum
cost, network cost, deployment cost, and end
node device cost [16].
Easy to deploy network infrastrutcure
countrywide [1].
Existing cellular networks can be easily
upgraded and reused.
The number of IoT devices keeps on
increasing exponintially and LoRaWAN star
network topolgy can dissolve this increasing
perfectly [21].
LoRaWAN is high scalable since a single
gateway can support hundreds or thousande
of end node devices assuming that the traffic
load of each node device is low [15].
LoRaWAN network performance could be
improved by increasing the number of sub-
bands that increases the overall duty cycle
LoRawan provides throughput higher than
the the other technologies with low
complexity [22].
This feature is enormously important for the
future of IoT networkssince it will certify the
operation of the device without any
interruption [23].
Uses encryption algorithms that provides a
high level of security.
LoRaWAN provides two layers for security:
one for the network and the other for the
2019 10th International Conference on Information and Communication Systems (ICICS)
From the literatures, we collected as much as found, the
most important features and characteristics and presenting
them in Table I. We classify these features into categories
that contains and provide the common characteristics. The
classification elements are Quality of Service (QoS),
Flexibility, Power Consumption, Network Coverage, Cost
Policy, Deployment, Scalability, Throughput, and Security.
All of these characteristics influence on the performance of
IoT technology because most of them are important factors.
In recent years there have been many researches on the
development of IoT, which has led to its improvement. With
the rapid increase of IoT devices and applications like, smart
power grid, e-Learning, Smart cities, Healthcare, and
environment protection, the revolution of the LoRaWAN
technology is a powerful solution in order to help in solving
the IoT challenges and obstacles. The details of LoRaWAN
characteristics were illustrated and we conclude that
LoRaWAN network technology has a powerful imprint in
improving the near future IoTs devices and networks hence it
has some excellent characteristics like, High QoS,
Flexibility, Deployment, Scalability, Throughput, and
Security. Finally, we can consider LoRaWAN as a revolution
created for IoTs world.
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2019 10th International Conference on Information and Communication Systems (ICICS)
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... The commonly used LPWAN technologies in the long-range communication ecosystem are LoRa, Sigfox, Ingenu, Weightless, LTE-M, or NB-IoT and some of them are proprietary and patented solutions (Milarokostas, et al, 2022). Currently, LoRa Wide-Area Network (LoRaWAN) technology is considered the most adopted LPWAN technology (Ibrahim, 2019), e.g., LoRaWAN Alliance counts with 500+ associated members, as well as 140+ LoRaWAN deployments and 130+ Network Operators in different countries (Matni, et al, 2020). More specifically, LoRaWAN promises ubiquitous connectivity for many IoT applications, while keeping network structures and management simple (Adelantado et al., 2017). ...
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The objective of this paper is to evaluate the reliability and scalability of Low-Power Wide Area Network (LPWAN) architecture using ns-3 simulation and modelling. The study provides a more comprehensive investigation of the scalability, reliability, and capacity of LoRa networks (LoRaWAN) as the number of end devices grows to hundreds or thousands per gateway. This was achieved by modeling LoRaWAN networks as pure and slotted ALOHA networks, with consideration for important characteristics such as the capture effect. The relationship between transmission rates and spread factor was also investigated. Using the LoRaWAN ns-3 module, a scalability analysis of LoRaWAN shows the detrimental impact on packet delivery ratio (PDR) of increasing the number of nodes per gateway and presents the results of transmission rate at varying spread factors.
... Low Power Wide Area Network (LP-WAN) technologies often utilize LoRa network to fill the gap between cellular networks, e. g., GSM, UMTS, and LTE (up to 100 km), and short range networks, e. g., Bluetooth, Wi-Fi, and ZigBee (0-1000 m). Also, LoRa network offers opportunities to meet the requirements for devices and applications of IoT [12]. Due to these advances, scenarios and applications including environmental monitoring, smart city, smart farming, and smart heath care are witnessed using the design and implementation of LoRa [13]. ...
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Purpose. To develop a data acquisition which is optimized for suitable purposes in monitoring/warning or decision-making assistance in the field of geography accident in mining activities or agroforestry. Methodology. In activities related to mining, agroforestry and environmental monitoring, many climate factors must be taken into account including humidity, soil moisture or level of rainfall. Those data play a key role in pre-warning or assisting in decision-making for operators who are responsible for risk warning. In this paper, we present an optimized data acquisition system which is reasonable in cost, simple and easy in installation. The system includes a sensor station (SS) and a central station to collect data from specified monitoring points. The latter one is used to gather data from SS through a new and optimized Lora WAN communication system. When sending gathered data to a cloud sever, an assistant system based on 3G module is established to warn of abnormal scenarios of the mining procedure or environmental parameters. The system is experimented, tested and implemented in the North Mountain area (Northwest) of Vietnam. Findings. A development of an acquisition system with optimized-data for alarming/warning and monitoring in the field of geography accident, mining activities and environment. The system could get sensing signal in both direct way and indirect way despite of bad weather. Originality. An improved Dijkstra algorithm is implemented to optimize and simulate the routing paths of a network. The optimization could show the best way for getting signal from sensor station indirectly to other ones, then to the central station. Practical value. A simple, reasonable-cost and easy-installation system is formed for monitoring, risk warning in the field of geography, mining, and climate.
... Due to the rapid growth in Internet of things (IoT) market and applications, several new technologies have been explored to enhance the performance of wireless communication between devices specially in terms of energy efficiency due to the nature of IoT node [1]. One of the important objectives is to design a low power wide area network (LPWAN) to support limited energy IoT nodes. ...
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p>Long-range wide area network (LoRaWAN) is a promising low-power network standard that allows for longdistance wireless communication with great power saving. LoRa is based on pure ALOHA protocol for channel access, which causes collisions for the transmitted packets. The collisions may occur in two scenarios, namely the intra-spreading factor (intra-SF) and the inter-spreading factor (inter-SF) interference. Consequently, the SFs assignment is a very critical task for the network performance. This paper investigates a smart SFs assignment technique to reduce collisions probability and improve the network performance. In this work, we exploit different architectures of artificial neural networks for detecting collisions and selecting the optimal SF. The results show that the investigated technique achieves a higher prediction accuracy than traditional machine learning algorithms and enhances the energy consumption of the network.</p
Low power wide area networks (LPWANs) are made to survive conditions of extensive installation. Technological innovations, including Global Network Operator, Long Range Wide Area Network (LoRaWAN), Narrowband Internet of Things (NB-IoT), Weightless, Sigfox, etc., have adopted LPWANs. LoRaWAN is currently regarded to be one of the most cutting-edge and intriguing technology for the widespread implementation of the IoT. LoRaWAN is currently regarded to be one of the most cutting-edge and intriguing technology for the widespread implementation of the IoT. Although LoRaWAN offers the best features that make it fit with Internet - of - things specifications, there are still certain technical issues to overcome, such as link coordination, resource allocation and reliable transmission. In LoRaWAN, End-devices transmit randomized uplink frames to the gateways using un-slotted random-access protocol. This randomness with the restrictions placed on the gateways is a reason that leads to a considerable decline in network performance, in particular downlink frames. In this paper, we propose a new approach to increase Acknowledgement (ACK) messages throughput. The suggested method takes advantage of both class A and class B features to enhance and assist LoRaWAN’s reliability by ensuring that an ACK message is sent for every confirmed uplink while retaining the minimum energy level that is utilized by nodes.
Conference Paper
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LoRaWAN exhibits several characteristics that can lead to an unfair distribution of the Data Extracted Rate (DER) among nodes. Firstly, the capture effect leads to a strong signal suppressing a weaker signal at the gateway and secondly, the spreading codes used are not perfectly orthogonal, causing packet loss if an interfering signal is strong enough. In these conditions, nodes experiencing higher attenuation are less likely to see their packets received correctly. We develop FADR, a Fair Adaptive Data Rate algorithm for LoRaWAN that exploits the different Spreading Factors (SFs) and Transmission Powers (TPs) settings available in LoRa to achieve a fair Data Extraction Rate among all nodes while at the same time avoiding excessively high TPs. Simulations show that FADR, in highly congested cells, achieves 300% higher fairness than the minimum airtime allocation approach and 22% higher fairness than Brechts approach, while consuming almost 22% lower energy.
Conference Paper
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Many Internet of Things (IoT) applications benefit greatly from low-power long-range connectivity. A promising technology to achieve the low-power and long-range requirements is seen in LoRaWAN, a media access control (MAC) protocol maintained by the LoRa Alliance and leveraging Semtech's patented LoRa radio modulation technology. LoRaWAN provides three different device classes (A, B and C), which provide a trade-off between performance (i.e., throughput and latency) and energy consumption. This paper offers a theoretical and experimental comparison of these classes. The objective of the quantitative experiment was twofold: to verify the published current levels of different operating modes in a LoRa chip's datasheet and to compare the battery lifetime for the LoRa class A and C modes of operation. We used a high-end current sensing circuit to gather the voltage levels and temporal variation with increasing payload sizes and spreading factors. Using the Ohmic Law, the energy drain can be calculated and compared across the different spreading factors (SF) and classes.
Conference Paper
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Internet of Things (IoT) has revolutionized the traditional Internet where only human-centric services were offered. It has enabled objects to have the ability to connect and communicate through the Internet. IoT has several applications such as smart water management systems. However, they require high energy-efficient sensor nodes that are able to communicate across long distance. This motivates the development of many Low-Power Wide Area Networks (LPWAN) technologies, such as LoRa, to fulfill these requirements. Therefore, in this paper, we survey IoT devices and different applications based on LoRa and LoRaWAN in order understand the current stream of devices used. The objective is to contribute toward the realization of LoRa as a viable communication technology for applications that needs long-range links and deployed in a distributed manner. We highlighted the device parameter settings and the output of each experiment surveyed.
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LoRaWAN is a flagship Low-Power Wide Area Network (LPWAN) technology that has highly attracted much attention from the community in recent years. Many LoRaWAN end-devices, such as sensors or actuators, are expected not to be powered by the electricity grid; therefore, it is crucial to investigate the energy consumption of LoRaWAN. However, published works have only focused on this topic to a limited extent. In this paper, we present analytical models that allow the characterization of LoRaWAN end-device current consumption, lifetime and energy cost of data delivery. The models, which have been derived based on measurements on a currently prevalent LoRaWAN hardware platform, allow us to quantify the impact of relevant physical and Medium Access Control (MAC) layer LoRaWAN parameters and mechanisms, as well as Bit Error Rate (BER) and collisions, on energy performance. Among others, evaluation results show that an appropriately configured LoRaWAN end-device platform powered by a battery of 2400 mAh can achieve a 1-year lifetime while sending one message every 5 min, and an asymptotic theoretical lifetime of 6 years for infrequent communication.
Conference Paper
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The Internet of Things (IoT) vision requires increasingly more sensor nodes interconnected and a network solution that may accommodate these requirements accordingly. In wireless sensor networks, there are energy-limited devices; therefore techniques to save energy have become a significant research trend. Other issues such as latency, range coverage, and bandwidth are important aspects in IoT. It is considering the massive number of expected nodes connected to the Internet. The LoRaWAN (Low Power WAN Protocol for Internet of Things), a data-link layer with long range, low power, and low bit rate, appeared as a promising solution for IoT in which, end-devices use LoRa to communicate with gateways through a single hop. While proprietary LPWAN (Low Power Wide Area Network) technologies are already hitting a large market, this paper addresses the LoRa architecture and the LoRaWAN protocol that is expected to solve the connectivity problem of tens of billions of devices in the next decade. Use cases are considered to illustrate its application alongside with a discussion about open issues and research opportunities.
Current forecasts predict that the Industrial Internet of Things will account for about 10 billion devices by 2020. Simultaneously, unlicensed low-power wide area networks are gaining momentum due to their low cost, low power, and long range characteristics, which are suitable for many IIoT applications, in addition to the usage of unlicensed bands. In this article, a solution is proposed to seamlessly integrate LoRaWAN, an open and standardized LPWAN technology, with 4G/5G mobile networks, thus allowing mobile network operators to reutilize their current infrastructures. This proposal is transparent to LoRaWAN end devices and to the EPC, since only the LoRaWAN gateway needs to be modified. The gateway acts as an evolved Node B from the core network perspective, implementing part of the eNB protocol stack. All data packets transported over the core network are both encrypted and integrity protected, hence achieving end-toend security. As a proof of concept, this solution has been implemented and validated with an open source EPC.