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Geolocation 16.07.21

Ultra-Wideband technology: Which one to choose?

Zozio’s solution based on Ultra Wideband technology

At Zozio, we integrate UWB (Ultra Wideband) technology to our geolocation tags. We have been looking for a solution that best meets the challenges of indoor geolocation. These include finding a solution that offers the best accuracy and can be adapted to all industrial environments.

In this respect, not all UWB offerings are created equal. While the capabilities of UWB remain more or less the same, it seems that some market players stand out both for their accuracy and for the efficiency of their technology.

 

Solutions Ultra-Wideband : Decawave, Ubisense, Bespoon

Different technologies

Although all three providers use the UWB technology, their approach is different. Ubisense, as the first company on the market, markets a kit composed of a network of anchors to be placed in fixed locations and a UWB tag. It uses both AOA (Angle of Arrival) and TDOA (Time Difference of Arrival) data to improve the reliability of its solution.

However, the use of AOA does not allow the Ubisense solution to catch up with the results of the Decawave solution.

The statistical study by Jiménez and Seco shows a standard deviation of 10 meters for Ubisense versus only 20 centimeters for Decawave in the measurement of the error with respect to the actual position of the tag.

BeSpoon, on the other hand, offers a system of tags connected to a smartphone (Spoonphone) allowing to see in real time the position of the tags in the indoor environment. As you can see, BeSpoon is not able today to reach the same reliability as Decawave.

Finally, Decawave sells a modular solution composed of different UWB chips. They allow to select several frequencies for the emission of signals and offer an accuracy of about 30cm for a range of 100m in outdoor.

Accuracy differences

Secondly, the Ubisense, Bespoon and Decawave sensors do not reach the same level of performance.

Indeed, the study conducted by Antonio R. Jiménez and Fernando Seco shows the superiority of Decawave. Tests conducted in industrial environments show that Decawave’s solution is both the most accurate and the most reliable. Thus, when the tag is in the center of the geolocation zone, the three solutions are equal with error margins of about 20cm. It is when approaching the periphery that Decawave technology stands out. The performance of Ubisense and Bespoon degrades considerably as you get closer to the edges of the test area, unlike Decawave tags.

 

Précision de la géolocalisation indoor Decawave

Figure 1 : above easily shows that the UWB technology provides much more accurate results.

It is not necessary to have such accuracy in all cases of use. However, it will be essential in harsh environments such as industry where reliability is required.

For all these reasons, we use the Decawave technology in our Zozio tags to guarantee the best accuracy to our collaborators.

 

Written by Emma Grignard

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