HiFlecs has been developed in a project at the Ostwestfalen-Lippe University of Applied Sciences. A new wireless standard is required for industry because existing wireless systems like WLAN and Bluetooth have weaknesses in terms of real-time capability and reliability, and are therefore not particularly suitable for smooth production processes, according to Project Manager Dr. Uwe Meier. But industry also needs a wireless connection that facilitates intelligent, independent, flexible, modular and dynamic communication between sensors and system components.
The basis of HiFlecs is so-called co-existence management, which allows allocation of time and frequency channels with real-time capability and of the transmission power. The wireless cells can be integrated without much work into a higher-level automation system. The network management system also monitors dynamic adaptation to changing environmental conditions and system states. The project was funded by the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research.
The Association for Electrical, Electronic & Information Technologies (VDE) already warned in 2017 that the requirements of a multitude of industrial application scenarios could not be met with the available wireless technology. “Completely new approaches and processes” are required for new, critical applications in the manufacturing sector.