How many Cloud Connectors that is required for your installation will vary, but the two key guidelines are as follows:
Dense cloud connector deployment => Sensors can be placed anywhere with little or no considerations around the radio communication range.
Optimize for few cloud connectors => Sensor placements need more careful assessment and potentially sensor accessories for robust communication.
The radio communication range is a strong function of how the sensors are installed, as shown in chapter What do you want to measure?. As a general guideline, the following range can be expected:
A key element of a healthy installation is the connectivity between sensors and Cloud Connectors, and between the Cloud Connector and the DT Cloud. Every sensor needs to have a decent signal to at least one Cloud Connector. It is recommended to keep the radio signal reading in Studio or the API above 30%. As a rule of thumb, a Cloud Connector can be thought of as a high-quality WiFi router with a similar coverage area.
Avoid data loss
If the Cloud Connector loses its electricity supply or its network connection, the sensor data will not be transferred to the DT Cloud and will therefore not be stored.
Consider the installation environment
As with all radio equipment installations, end results are a product of many factors of the environment that will influence the setup, such as :
- Wall compositions, internal dry walls vs. reinforced concrete walls or metal cabinet walls
- The density of people in the area
- Height and layout of rooms and surfaces
- Radio interference and other radio signals
- Drywalls dampens signals slightly, whereas brick walls dampen signals significantly.
- Simple windows may let signals through with little loss, whereas tinted glass or modern windows with UV-blocking coatings may cause significant signal loss or act as signal-mirrors
To achieve the best results, the installation should be tested when the activity in the installation area is representative of normal use. If the installation is verified in an empty building, results may differ when the building is filled with people on a busy day.
Calculate how many Cloud Connectors are needed
To plan the number of cloud connectors and placements, a floorplan/map of where sensors shall be placed is needed. See example planning below, where circles have a 25m radius. It is beneficial to have some overlap in the coverage areas to assure robust communication across the area.
In an office environment, placing Cloud Connectors with approximately 30m spacing typically gives robust coverage for DT sensors.
In general, it is better to add margins on connectivity than spend time optimizing the max distance between sensors and Cloud Connectors.