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The new OpenBAT series of tailor-made WLAN access points and clients

07 March 2012

Belden’s new OpenBAT range from Hirschmann™ is the first modular system to enable industry-standard WLAN access points and clients to be configured via the internet.

Belden’s new OpenBAT range from Hirschmann is the first modular system to enable industry-standard WLAN access points and clients to be configured via the internet. This range, comprising the BAT-R (IP20) and BAT-F (IP67) series, supports the IEEE 802.11n transmission standard, which facilitates data speeds of up to 450Mbps in both the 5GHz and the 2.4GHz bands. Both series are based on entirely new hardware and also have a powerful HiLCOS operating system with extensive management, security and quality of service functions plus layer 3 IP routing. The number of wireless modules and Ethernet LAN ports can be configured individually, as can the power delivery concept. This also applies to the over a dozen certificates that qualify these access points and clients for use in, for example, the power supply industry, the gas and oil sector or rail transportation. They can be used to set up fast and stable infrastructure and meshed networks plus wireless distribution systems (WDS) or point-to-point connections. Several thousand different designs can be configured using these OpenBAT devices. The range, expected to be launched in Spring 2012, thus allows tailored solutions with an optimal price-performance ratio.

The core component of this new hardware is a patented wireless module specifically designed for applications in industrial environments, with integrated ESD protection and bandpass filters. MIMO technology (Multiple Input Multiple Output) ensures a stable wireless connection even in the presence of reflections or other forms of interference. Fast roaming guarantees uninterrupted connections when transferring from one radio cell to another.
The CPU platform facilitates a LAN connection via Gigabit Ethernet. The access points und clients also possess potential-free contacts as well as one V.24 and one USB interface that can be used for analog or DSL modem connections for WAN routing or remote maintenance. All combinations operate at temperatures in the range -40°C to +70°C and also fulfil stringent demands as regards shock and vibration resistance.

The access points and clients can be equipped with one or two wireless modules as desired. The LAN connections can also be configured with one or two ports and these can be used for twisted pair cables or SFP transceivers. A choice of redundant power packs for 24/48 VDC, 60/120/250 VDC or 110/230 VAC is available.

The HiLCOS operating system can be used to manage all members of the OpenBAT range via web interface, Telnet, TFTP, FTP or SNMP V2. High network availability is provided by the rapid spanning tree protocol. Among other features, the quality-of-service functions specified by IEEE 802.11e allow the prioritization of voice or video streams. An integrated IP router can be used to construct up to eight sub-networks.

The access points and clients support all encryption and authentication methods compliant with IEEE 802.11i and 802.1x/EAP as well as WEP, WPA, WPA2, TKIP, AES and LEPS, and there are also WLAN port and protocol filters, a radius server, and a firewall equipped with intrusion detection. Rogue AP detection is also available via background scanning and WLAN monitor.

The devices in the BAT-R series have robust metal housings and are designed to be mounted on DIN rails. The units in the BAT-F range were developed for field applications. They too have robust metal housings that are additionally salt spray resistant. Thanks to their Nema and UL certification and robust M12 connectors they can be installed on walls or poles both indoors and out.

The new OpenBAT range from its Hirschmann™ product range makes Belden the first manufacturer to offer industrial standard WLAN access points and clients that can be configured via the internet. “This concept gives users maximum flexibility,” says Product Manager Olaf Schilperoort, “because they can configure the optimal equipment version for the requirements of their application, hence they only pay for the features they really need.”

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