Sigfox devices travelling between continents – is Monarch technology usable?

Because of global regulations, Sigfox currently uses 6 different radio configurations. Each radio zone differs based on three parameters: (1) the first is frequency range, (2) the second is the maximum radiated power, (3) the third is radio front end specificities.

A Sigfox device will transmit properly only in the RC zone it is currently set up for. When leaving one RC zone and entering another, it would make sense for Sigfox devices created for global tracking to be able to switch the radio configuration they transmit in.

Switching between different zones

  1. The antenna needs to be able to transmit efficiently in the desired RC zones
  2. Switching between the RC zones has to be supported
  3. A trigger for the RC zone switch has to be defined

Ways to switch the emitter:

  1. Manual – through a switch/button, human action that’s not remote in general
  2. Time – the easiest one, if you know that the device is leaving a port you can tell the device to switch to another radio zone within 2 days
  3. GPS – if the device has a GPS module, you can program the device to switch the zones when it reaches a zone border
  4. World Time Code emitter – you can listen to it and switch the RCZ based on location
  5. WiFi beaconsif you have a predefined trajectory and are able to put managed WiFi beacons at transition points, you can use them to switch the zones
  6. Environment changetake-off/landing, port raising height during reloading
  7. Bluetooth/RFID  beacons
  8. Monarch

What is Monarch and when it is listening?

Monarch is a unique feature of the Sigfox network, providing IoT devices with the ability to seamlessly move and communicate across continents. So let’s imagine a lighthouse that is emitting the light every 5 minutes, but only located in ports and airports.  The device needs to listen to the lighthouse and by detecting the pattern it can switch to the proper zone. Therefore, if you miss it the device can be lost. Can it listen all the time? Each unsuccessful 5 minutes listening takes approx. 40 messages of energy.

Monarch listens:

  1. If you know when it will arrive at port, you can listen after a setup time
  2. If you are able to physically detect the port, so after the detection
  3. If you have a precise timer you can try to listen to specified time slots
  4. You can combine the methods

Our Hardware solution: SimplePack Plus 3.0 Advanced Edition

Classical SimplePack Plus options- button, LED, buzzer, accelerometer, magnetometer, light sensor, tilt measurement, impact tracking, precise temperature WiFi tracking, IP 68

Additionally:
Contains more memory
Can contain: Gyroscope, Barometer, Pedometer, Precise timing, external SPI interface, external thermometer, external switches
In preparation: 85°C capable version and 150°capable version

Documents that you can find useful:

Multizone devices – introducing Sigfox Monarch

Monarch support in different versions of SimplePack 3.0 Plus WiFi Tracker

So is Monarch usable technology?

Yes. But is it really “It just works. It just happens.”?

We believe Sigfox Monarch is a cool technology, which provides a lot of benefits and business opportunities. At the same time, Monarch is NOT an automatic worldwide system and needs complete Discovery and a very use-case specific approach.

Want to watch an entire webinar about the topic and download slides? Find them here.

Best wishes,

Simple Hardware Team