Linear Technology has announced the acquisition of Dust Networks, Inc., a provider of low power wireless sensor network (WSN) technology. The acquisition enables Linear to offer a complete high performance wireless sensor networking solution.
Dust Networks’ low power radio and software technology complements Linear’s strengths in industrial instrumentation, power management and energy harvesting technology. Dust's WSN technology extends Linear’s product portfolio into key growth areas in industrial process control, data acquisition and energy harvesting. Its ultralow power wireless systems complements Linear’s analog and digital sensor interface ICs, and energy harvesting power management products in applications where measurement of physical parameters has traditionally been impractical or impossible.
“Dust Networks offers the lowest power radio technology and most complete networking software for building industrial-grade wireless sensor networks. Combined with Linear’s precision low-power sensor interface products and battery-free energy harvesting technology, we can now offer the industry’s highest performance remote monitoring solutions,” said Erik Soule, Vice President of Signal Conditioning and High Frequency products for Linear.
The growing importance of machine-to-machine communications to enable remote data acquisition, low power wireless sensing is an emerging solution for many end-markets, including industrial process control, building automation and data center energy management.
“Smart Dust” was first conceived by Dr. Kris Pister, founder and chief technologist of Dust Networks, as a simple way to deploy intelligent wireless sensors. Dust pioneered SmartMesh networks, comprising a self-forming mesh of nodes, or “motes,” that collect and relay data, and a network manager that monitors and manages network performance and sends data to the host application. This technology is now the basis for a number of seminal networking standards. The hallmark of Dust Networks’ technology is that it combines low power, standards-based radio technology, time diversity, frequency diversity, and physical diversity—to assure reliability, scalability, wire-free power source flexibility, and ease-of-use. All motes in a SmartMesh network—even the routing nodes—are designed to run on batteries for years, allowing the ultimate flexibility in placing sensors exactly where they need to go with low cost “peel and stick” installations.
Dust Networks’ technology can be found in a variety of monitoring and control solutions, including data center energy management, renewable energy, remote monitoring, and transportation.