Development and performance analysis of a ZigBee and LoRa-based smart building sensor network

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FRONTIERS IN ENERGY RESEARCH, vol.10, 2022 (SCI-Expanded) identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 10
  • Publication Date: 2022
  • Doi Number: 10.3389/fenrg.2022.933743
  • Journal Indexes: Science Citation Index Expanded (SCI-EXPANDED), Scopus
  • Keywords: ZigBee, LORA, IoT, wireless technologies, smart buildings, smart energy management
  • Yıldız Technical University Affiliated: Yes


A wireless sensor network employing ZigBee and LoRa (Long Range) communication protocols for integration into smart building energy management systems is presented in this article. The design and implementation details are provided, and the performance parameters of the communication network are defined and analyzed based on the test results obtained from different configurations. The developed embedded system can be used in smart environments so that the room temperature, humidity, lighting systems, and so on can be automatically monitored and controlled. By customizing the embedded code, a variety of Internet of Things (IoT) applications can be introduced owing to their scalability. Taking advantage of the complementing low-power and long-range features of ZigBee and LoRa communication technologies, a system comprising an end device, a multi-protocol gateway, and a central data collector (CDC) unit is developed. The end device collects temperature and humidity as well as light intensity data using low-power sensors and sends the data to the gateway via the LoRa wireless transceiver module. The gateway was designed as an intermediate device that allows data exchange between the LoRa and ZigBee transceiver modules. It receives sensor data from the end device via LoRa and sends them to the CDC unit via a ZigBee-based XBee S2 commercial wireless transceiver module. Sensor data are monitored in the CDC unit by using an open-source IoT software platform. A commercial STM32 integrated circuit (IC) was used as a microcontroller unit for the end device and gateway. Performance parameters such as communication range and throughput data were studied for both the ZigBee and LoRa wireless transceiver modules.