Service Oriented Architecture for Interconnecting LoRa Devices with the Cloud
The contribution of this work is two-fold: First, we show how Low Power Wide Area Networks (LPWANs) can be interconnected with the cloud; second, leveraging on PaaS functionality, we develop LoRaWare, a Service Oriented Architecture (SOA) and system that allows developers to enhance the capabilities of LoRa enabled applications using advanced cloud services such as, selective publication and subscription to data, IoT connectivity using MQTT protocol, persistent storage etc. We experimented with LoRa and LoRaWAN, the latest successful representative of LPWAN protocols. We applied a typical experimental setup with LoRa environmental sensors transmitting measurements over long distances to gateways. LoRa gateways receive LoRa packets from sensors in range and re-transmit them to the cloud using an IP protocol (typically UDP). In this work, we opt for MQTT, a more elaborate lightweight publish-subscribe IP protocol offering advanced security, better routing control and visibility of the communication (i.e. easier handling and control of data packets). To support connection of LoRa IoT networks with the cloud, we developed the Network Server, a cloud service that encompasses the necessary functionality for porting LoRa packets to applications (i.w. encrypts/decrypts, de-duplicates, authenticates LoRa packets and converts LoRa payloads to JSON). We developed our solution in Fiware, the cloud infrastructure of the European Union. The reason for our selection is that, currently, Fiware supports interconnection with LoRa only via the network of another provider (i.e. The Things Network). The Network Server is the only solution for connecting LoRa networks directly to Fiware. We run an exhaustive set of experiments in order to study system response time and scalability as well as, the practical range efficiency of LoRaWAN protocol.
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