LoRa with ROS - possible topic for master thesis

asked 2020-04-22 07:39:43 -0500

Chrizzly gravatar image

Hello dear ROS community, I am going to write my master thesis in the near future and am searching for a topic right now.

I already got many good ideas but am not really sure, yet. During research I stumbled upon ROS today which peaked my interest. I also crossed paths with LoRa(WAN) several times before.

Now I was asking myself, is there already any sort of LoRa-Bridge for ROS? The key idea was having robots function as LoRa-gateways, enabling them (in whatever way) to estimate distance and/or connection quality to the LoRa-Nodes and autonomously positioning them in a way that would allow for the best average connection for all connected notes. Of course this would probably not fit into the scope of a master's thesis (80-100 pages, 6 months, next to a full-time job). Still there is the idea left to design a component that would allow Robot designers (so basically you guys) communication over LoRa. MQTT over LoRa would probably work pretty well with ROS.

I could imagine some useful scenarios like commanding mostly-autonomous robots from a safe distance (think search and rescue operations), exploring with drones, having multiple robots talk to each other in order to coordinate, etc..

Am I missing something? Do you think there is any need for this? Of course I am also open to any other ideas for my thesis :)

Thank you so much and stay healthy!

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Sounds like a good idea, although LoRa is slow and very sensitive to obstructions/reflections and works best with line-of-sight, so using the connection quality (RSSI) may not actually work.

You could, perhaps, look into creating a bridge that converts LoRa messages into ROS messages. One benefit would be that LoRa can (theoretically at least!) have a long range. So it could be a good way to send/receive triggers to Robotic Systems without the need for WiFi/internet.

deepaktalwardt gravatar image deepaktalwardt  ( 2020-04-22 16:13:47 -0500 )edit

That idea came to my mind as well. Do you think the data rate of LoRa(WAN) would be enough for ROS messages?

Chrizzly gravatar image Chrizzly  ( 2020-04-23 01:15:38 -0500 )edit

Is there any update on this? I will need to use Lorawan very soon and i would like to integrate it in ROS even if I found out that there are no C/C++ examples available on the net. I could create a ROS Node for it but I would need some C/C++ sample to start from.

Marcus Barnet gravatar image Marcus Barnet  ( 2021-02-12 05:43:46 -0500 )edit