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Confidex’s enhanced Bluetooth LE beacon – the Viking Tough – delivers long-life, tamper-proof condition monitoring in harsh environments for industrial IoT applications

Internet of Things (IoT) solutions company, Confidex, has released its newly enhanced Viking Tough Bluetooth Low Energy (Bluetooth LE) beacon that delivers real-time intelligence about the conditions and status of assets and goods in places and conditions where typical Bluetooth LE beacon devices won’t last. The high performance, battery-powered and industrial-grade beacon enables Industrial IoT use cases such as asset tracking/management, condition monitoring, or other real-time location services (RTLS) applications across sectors such as automotive, construction, oil & gas, and mining.

Viking Tough leverages Nordic Semiconductor’s nRF52832 multiprotocol System-on-Chip (SoC), to provide ultra-low power consumption, as well as exceptional radio sensitivity. Tough’s polyurethane enclosure ensures the device is extremely ruggedized (it boasts an IP69K-rating) and qualified for use over an extended –40º to 85º Celsius operating temperature range. These features provide users with the ability to build demanding IIoT applications in harsh operating environments where extended vibration and mechanical impact can typically impair traditional beacons. This newly enhanced product has secured RF certifications already in Europe, U.S. and Canada as well as Australia/New Zealand, Brazil, Japan, South-Korea, Russia and Ukraine.

“Thanks to Confidex’ engineering, and by leveraging Nordic’s nRF52832 SoC, the Viking Tough’s exceptional radio performance and optimized power consumption makes it a product that serves the industrial IoT market with reliable connectivity that will run for years without any need for maintenance,” says Thomas Holmberg, Senior Regional Sales Manager, Europe, Nordic Semiconductor.

Long life and tamper-proof

Viking Tough beacon is optimized for an extended lifetime as long as eight years for typical asset management applications. This is ensured by low power consumption while being designed with a generous amount of battery capacity (1900mAh).

With secure NFC authentication for tamper-proof operation, the Viking beacons cannot be hacked or maliciously configured by third- party apps, or over Bluetooth LE radio, thanks not only to NFC authentication but also unique beacon identity keys.

Viking Tough

Further, the Viking Tough is equipped with a high-performance accelerometer and hall-effect sensor. It comes also supported by an entire ecosystem of cutting-edge technology providers: Quuppa Angle of Arrival (AoA) location system and Wirepas Massive mesh networks.

“The Viking Tough’s extremely rugged design complements Quuppa’s tag ecosystem offering, and especially serves our customers in the industrial and mining RTLS segments,” says Fabio Belloni, Quuppa’s CCO and Co-founder.

Delivery as pre-configured for easy deployment

The Viking Tough device transmits to a user’s smartphone or to a back-end system using the Bluetooth LE connectivity, sensor telemetry data and open format advertising packets by Google Eddystone and Apple iBeacon. Identifying a beacon in a fixed position or linking it with a certain asset in the back-end system can be easily done by reading the built-in NFC tag with a mobile phone or from a printed QR code on the label.

Confidex offers broad customization possibilities and can deliver fully personalized beacons from custom label designs to customer specific settings. The only thing left for the person doing the commissioning, is to turn the beacon on with the Confidex Runestone™ Android mobile app. The app’s beacon scanner and RSSI (Received Signal Strength Indicator) graph aids deployment process. The app is freely downloadable from the Google Play store.