FAQs

Terminology

I am new to Real-Time Location System, do you have a list of basic terminology?


  • Anchor - AN (Anchor Node) - Infrastructure node with fixed location - reference node capable of measuring location data, data offload and routing.
    • An Anchor can have Bridge function enabled - it functions as a bridge between UWB and other interfaces. For example Ethernet, SPI or USB.
  • LE - Location engine - An algorithm for position estimation using measured values. There are two major groups used
    • Trilateration - Location engine which uses distance between nodes to estimate the position, especially when TWR is used.
    • Multilateration - Location engine which uses time difference between nodes to estimate the position, especially when TDOA is used.
  • Navigation mode - navigation is when the location data are collected on the module. In LEAPS the location is calculated on the module and the data are available via on-module API. This provides very low latency, reduce infrastructure costs and significantly simplify the deployment. Typical applications are e.g. navigation of drones, navigation of robots, navigation of tools, navigation of vehicles and portable devices.
  • Node - A network device that is capable of communicating with other devices (Anchor, Tag, ...).
  • Tag - TN (Tag Node) - Mobile node with moving location - It uses Anchors to do the measurements, to locate its position and to exchange data at specified update rate.
  • TDOA - Time Difference of Arrival - It is a measurement technique where difference in time is measured between nodes at known fixed locations. The result of the measurement is time difference. The nodes at known fixed location typically need to be synchronized.
  • Tracking mode - tracking is when the location and telemetry data are collected on a centralized server. The data are available via LEAPS Server API. This mode is suitable for monitoring and processing of data at a single place, typically on a server. Typical applications are e.g. asset tracking, zone violation detection, athlets performance monitoring and personnel tracking.
  • TWR - Two-way Ranging - Is a group of measurement techniques where the range between two nodes are estimated by exchanging messages both way. The result of the measurement is distance. The nodes do not need to be synchronized.
  • UWB - Ultra-wideband - Is a radio technology that can use a very low energy level for short-range, high-bandwidth communications over a large portion of the radio spectrum. In comparison to other technology like Bluetooth, WIFI or GPS, it is very immune to multipath fading, hence, this makes it suitable for accurate positioning especially indoors.





General

What are the differences between DWM1001, PANS and LEAPS?


DWM1001 is a hardware module based on Decawave's DW1000 Ultra Wideband (UWB) transceiver IC, which is an IEEE 802.15.4- 2011 UWB implementation. It integrates UWB and Bluetooth® antenna, all RF circuitry, Nordic Semiconductor nRF52832 and a motion sensor. The module has been initially designed by LEAPS and is marketed under Decawave brand. PANS is a complete Real-Time Location System and network stack - configurable into anchor, tag or bridge nodes. The software stack has been developed by LEAPS and it is marketed under Decawave brand. LEAPS is an advanced modular system that is suitable for accurate positioning and data telemetry in real-time. It is based on PANS software stack. LEAPS can run primarily on DWM1001 but for customized application, it can also run on other hardware. A great versatility in a small footprint makes LEAPS a unique Swiss Army knife for accurate positioning and data telemetry in real-time. One module with one firmware, configurable in different modes and profiles. The products with LEAPS stack are marketed under LEAPS brand.




How LEAPS has participated on creation of DWM1001 modules and PANS network stack?


DWM1001 module has been initially designed by LEAPS. We have also worked on module bring up, testing and evaluation. LEAPS has designed and developed the whole software stack of PANS including an extensive set of embedded tests used for module calibration and functional tests in production.




How LEAPS is licensed?


LEAPS provides modules with LEAPS software stack and are offered at favorable market price. LEAPS software stack is licensed as binary code, non-transferable and royalty free. For specific project where the modules cannot be pre-loaded with LEAPS software stack, the binary code is licensed as non-transferable with royalty fee per device. For centralized system where tracking is used, LEAPS Server is needed. The pricing for LEAPS Server will be specified in the upcoming months. Please subscribe to our mailing list to get informed.




Is LEAPS an advanced version of PANS?


PANS can be considered a "Lite" version of LEAPS. Based on the experience with PANS a lot of changes and improvements have been made to create LEAPS. The main focus were on improving system performance, improving security, adding flexibility using network profiles, improving the data server and API.




Is hardware of LEAPS different from PANS?


LEAPS software stack is designed to run primarily on DWM1001 module, and the same applies to PANS software stack. The stack is highly portable and can run also on different hardware. A typical end-product device contains a board with power circuits, connectors, optional micro-controller and at the heart, there is a DWM1001 module with LEAPS software stack.




What are differences in LEAPS FLEX, LEAPS NAV and LEAPS PRO?


LEAPS modules are offered in 3 variants with different sets of supported networking profiles. The users can choose what would best fit for their applications and budgets. Please see Variants comparison for more details.




Can LEAPS modify and use the PANS software stack?


LEAPS owns the PANS software stack and can use it freely for its purpose.




What are the differences between LEAPS and PANS in big picture?


Comparison of network concept for LEAPS (top) and PANS (bottom): LEAPS network concept PANS network concept





Technology

Can I send and receive user data on the edge nodes using LEAPS?


Depending on selected network profile, the Anchors and Tags can send and/or receive user data. Data sent from the Module toward the Server is called Uplink. Data sent from the Server toward the Module is called Downlink. Please, see the System Performance comparison for more details.




What location techniques are supported in LEAPS?


LEAPS supports various locating techniques including

  • TWR - Two-Way Ranging
  • RTWR - Reverse Two-Way Ranging
  • TDOA - Time Difference of Arrival using Aloha media access
  • TTDOA - Time Difference of Arrival using TDMA media access
  • RTDOA - Reverse Time Difference of Arrival
Versatility makes it easy to balance the system requirements, costs, deployment time and maintenance complexity. Applications range from simple distance proximity, to high speed tracking or navigation of unlimited amount of receivers.




Can I use LEAPS to navigate and track nodes at the same time?


Yes, most of network profiles allow multiple modes of location service. Depending on the selected network profile, the Tag's position can be used in both navigation and tracking modes at the same time. The data are available via on-module and server API. Please, see the System Performance comparison for more details.




Does LEAPS support wireless Ultra-wideband backhaul?


Depending on the selected network profile, the system can support wireless Ultra-wideband backhaul. The location and user data can be sent toward the Server and the nodes using Ultra-wideband radio. There are two types of backhaul supported:

  • Non-routing UWB backhaul - Is a one-hop backhaul where a bridge enabled device can forward the data between a Server over Ethernet and a node over UWB.
  • Routing UWB backhaul - Is a multi-hop backhaul where a bridge enabled device can forward the data between a Server on Ethernet and a node on UWB. Other infrastructure devices can participate on forwarding the data with other nodes via UWB. Routing mechanism is fully automated and adaptive to the changes in the network.
A typical network with Non-routing UWB backhaul consists of Tags and depending on the selected network profile some or all Anchors are with Ethernet connectivity (with bridge option enabled). A typical network with Routing UWB backhaul consists of Tags, some Anchors without Ethernet and some Anchors with Ethernet connectivity (with bridge option enabled). Please see the System Performance comparison for more details.




How can I configure, receive and send data using a node?


LEAPS modules can be configured and data can be handled using the following APIs

  • Bluetooth - New API over encrypted channel helps to properly handle data fragmentation commonly experienced on Bluetooth. The API is in TLV format and it supports the same command set as used for UART, SPI and USB (in the future).
  • UART - TLV binary format
  • SPI - TLV binary format
  • USB - TLV binary format (in the future)
  • Shell over UART - Debug shell in human readable format




Where the location and user uplink data are available?


The backhaul uplink location and user data are available via these APIs

  • Bluetooth - TLV binary format
  • UART - TLV binary format (limited data throughput)
  • SPI - TLV binary format
  • Data Server - MQTT protocol




What are the downlink events and commands?


They are service commands and events that provides the following services via the Data Server

  • Collection of signal map between the Anchors - can be used for installation and debug purpose.
  • Collection of distances between the Anchors - can be used for auto-positioning of the Anchors.
  • Remote control of GPIOs on the module.
  • and more.




How does security in LEAPS work?


The following security mechanism are implemented in LEAPS

  • Secure key storage - root of trust using hardware secure element.
  • Secure boot - to guarantee the consistency of the firmware.
  • Node authentication - nodes on the network are authorized using asymmetric authentication. Client's key set is possible.
  • Key exchange - the network key is exchanged securely and automatically between the authorized nodes.
  • Node sign-up - when enabled, only nodes that are authorized can connect to the network.
  • Node access revoke - revoke access for nodes already connected to the network.
  • Encryption for UWB and Bluetooth communication - data frames sent via UWB and Bluetooth communication are encrypted using AES-128.
  • Data encryption is resistant against attacks
    • Frame replay
    • Unauthorized nodes
    • Length extension attack
    • Data extraction when AES cipher block repeats
    • Power interruption
    • DoS
  • A unique way to generate entropy uses network synchronicity which makes it very difficult to apply an attack even if the key is stolen.
  • Highly optimized for embedded module with memory constraints.
  • Low data overhead being sent over UWB.
  • Changes in infrastructure detection - helps to detect when the infrastructure nodes have been moved.
  • Whole chain security - data are all protected from the input point until the output interface of the last component.
  • All communication via TCP/IP uses TLS 1.2.
  • The system should undergo penetration test in the future.




How many Anchors and Tags a LEAPS network can have?


The network stack is designed in the way that it always aims to reuse the air-time using an effective mechanism for both Anchors and Tags. In short, if there is a condition that attenuates the signal of any transmitting node in a way it will not influence negatively transmission and reception by any other node then that air-time can be reused. This allows virtually unlimited amount of nodes to be deployed in a spread area where this condition can be created. All of this happens automatically using effective mechanisms implemented in LEAPS.




Can I use the unused GPIOs on the module?


Yes, there are GPIOs available for your applications. They can be controlled via API - UART, SPI or MQTT.




Is it possible to send data between the Anchors/Tags and the server?


Yes, depending on the profile it is possible to send data from the Anchors or Tags to the LEAPS Server. There two types of data

  • Uplink - data from the Anchors and Tags to the LEAPS Server.
  • Downlink - data from the LEAPS Server to the Anchors or Tags.




What API interfaces are available?


LEAPS modules can be configured and data can be handled using the following APIs

  • Bluetooth - New API over encrypted channel helps to properly handle data fragmentation commonly experienced on Bluetooth. The API is in TLV format and it supports the same command set as used for UART, SPI and USB (in the future).
  • UART - TLV binary format
  • SPI - TLV binary format
  • USB - TLV binary format (in the future)
  • Shell over UART - Debug shell in human readable format




What does LEAPS profile mean, and how is it unique from variant?


Variant is pricing model. LEAPS modules are offered in 3 variants with different sets of supported networking profiles. The users can choose what would best fit for their applications and budgets. Profile is how the network protocol is organized. Each profile is designed to provide optimal performance for a specific type of applications. Depending on variant, one or several profiles is supported. The user has to select the profile which best fit its application.





Tags

What are the differences between DWM1001, PANS and LEAPS?


DWM1001 is a hardware module based on Decawave's DW1000 Ultra Wideband (UWB) transceiver IC, which is an IEEE 802.15.4- 2011 UWB implementation. It integrates UWB and Bluetooth® antenna, all RF circuitry, Nordic Semiconductor nRF52832 and a motion sensor. The module has been initially designed by LEAPS and is marketed under Decawave brand. PANS is a complete Real-Time Location System and network stack - configurable into anchor, tag or bridge nodes. The software stack has been developed by LEAPS and it is marketed under Decawave brand. LEAPS is an advanced modular system that is suitable for accurate positioning and data telemetry in real-time. It is based on PANS software stack. LEAPS can run primarily on DWM1001 but for customized application, it can also run on other hardware. A great versatility in a small footprint makes LEAPS a unique Swiss Army knife for accurate positioning and data telemetry in real-time. One module with one firmware, configurable in different modes and profiles. The products with LEAPS stack are marketed under LEAPS brand.




How LEAPS has participated on creation of DWM1001 modules and PANS network stack?


DWM1001 module has been initially designed by LEAPS. We have also worked on module bring up, testing and evaluation. LEAPS has designed and developed the whole software stack of PANS including an extensive set of embedded tests used for module calibration and functional tests in production.




How LEAPS is licensed?


LEAPS provides modules with LEAPS software stack and are offered at favorable market price. LEAPS software stack is licensed as binary code, non-transferable and royalty free. For specific project where the modules cannot be pre-loaded with LEAPS software stack, the binary code is licensed as non-transferable with royalty fee per device. For centralized system where tracking is used, LEAPS Server is needed. The pricing for LEAPS Server will be specified in the upcoming months. Please subscribe to our mailing list to get informed.




Is LEAPS an advanced version of PANS?


PANS can be considered a "Lite" version of LEAPS. Based on the experience with PANS a lot of changes and improvements have been made to create LEAPS. The main focus were on improving system performance, improving security, adding flexibility using network profiles, improving the data server and API.




Is hardware of LEAPS different from PANS?


LEAPS software stack is designed to run primarily on DWM1001 module, and the same applies to PANS software stack. The stack is highly portable and can run also on different hardware. A typical end-product device contains a board with power circuits, connectors, optional micro-controller and at the heart, there is a DWM1001 module with LEAPS software stack.




What are differences in LEAPS FLEX, LEAPS NAV and LEAPS PRO?


LEAPS modules are offered in 3 variants with different sets of supported networking profiles. The users can choose what would best fit for their applications and budgets. Please see Variants comparison for more details.




Can LEAPS modify and use the PANS software stack?


LEAPS owns the PANS software stack and can use it freely for its purpose.




What are the differences between LEAPS and PANS in big picture?


Comparison of network concept for LEAPS (top) and PANS (bottom): LEAPS network concept PANS network concept





Infrastructure

Can I send and receive user data on the edge nodes using LEAPS?


Depending on selected network profile, the Anchors and Tags can send and/or receive user data. Data sent from the Module toward the Server is called Uplink. Data sent from the Server toward the Module is called Downlink. Please, see the System Performance comparison for more details.




What location techniques are supported in LEAPS?


LEAPS supports various locating techniques including

  • TWR - Two-Way Ranging
  • RTWR - Reverse Two-Way Ranging
  • TDOA - Time Difference of Arrival using Aloha media access
  • TTDOA - Time Difference of Arrival using TDMA media access
  • RTDOA - Reverse Time Difference of Arrival
Versatility makes it easy to balance the system requirements, costs, deployment time and maintenance complexity. Applications range from simple distance proximity, to high speed tracking or navigation of unlimited amount of receivers.




Can I use LEAPS to navigate and track nodes at the same time?


Yes, most of network profiles allow multiple modes of location service. Depending on the selected network profile, the Tag's position can be used in both navigation and tracking modes at the same time. The data are available via on-module and server API. Please, see the System Performance comparison for more details.




Does LEAPS support wireless Ultra-wideband backhaul?


Depending on the selected network profile, the system can support wireless Ultra-wideband backhaul. The location and user data can be sent toward the Server and the nodes using Ultra-wideband radio. There are two types of backhaul supported:

  • Non-routing UWB backhaul - Is a one-hop backhaul where a bridge enabled device can forward the data between a Server over Ethernet and a node over UWB.
  • Routing UWB backhaul - Is a multi-hop backhaul where a bridge enabled device can forward the data between a Server on Ethernet and a node on UWB. Other infrastructure devices can participate on forwarding the data with other nodes via UWB. Routing mechanism is fully automated and adaptive to the changes in the network.
A typical network with Non-routing UWB backhaul consists of Tags and depending on the selected network profile some or all Anchors are with Ethernet connectivity (with bridge option enabled). A typical network with Routing UWB backhaul consists of Tags, some Anchors without Ethernet and some Anchors with Ethernet connectivity (with bridge option enabled). Please see the System Performance comparison for more details.




How can I configure, receive and send data using a node?


LEAPS modules can be configured and data can be handled using the following APIs

  • Bluetooth - New API over encrypted channel helps to properly handle data fragmentation commonly experienced on Bluetooth. The API is in TLV format and it supports the same command set as used for UART, SPI and USB (in the future).
  • UART - TLV binary format
  • SPI - TLV binary format
  • USB - TLV binary format (in the future)
  • Shell over UART - Debug shell in human readable format




Where the location and user uplink data are available?


The backhaul uplink location and user data are available via these APIs

  • Bluetooth - TLV binary format
  • UART - TLV binary format (limited data throughput)
  • SPI - TLV binary format
  • Data Server - MQTT protocol




What are the downlink events and commands?


They are service commands and events that provides the following services via the Data Server

  • Collection of signal map between the Anchors - can be used for installation and debug purpose.
  • Collection of distances between the Anchors - can be used for auto-positioning of the Anchors.
  • Remote control of GPIOs on the module.
  • and more.




How does security in LEAPS work?


The following security mechanism are implemented in LEAPS

  • Secure key storage - root of trust using hardware secure element.
  • Secure boot - to guarantee the consistency of the firmware.
  • Node authentication - nodes on the network are authorized using asymmetric authentication. Client's key set is possible.
  • Key exchange - the network key is exchanged securely and automatically between the authorized nodes.
  • Node sign-up - when enabled, only nodes that are authorized can connect to the network.
  • Node access revoke - revoke access for nodes already connected to the network.
  • Encryption for UWB and Bluetooth communication - data frames sent via UWB and Bluetooth communication are encrypted using AES-128.
  • Data encryption is resistant against attacks
    • Frame replay
    • Unauthorized nodes
    • Length extension attack
    • Data extraction when AES cipher block repeats
    • Power interruption
    • DoS
  • A unique way to generate entropy uses network synchronicity which makes it very difficult to apply an attack even if the key is stolen.
  • Highly optimized for embedded module with memory constraints.
  • Low data overhead being sent over UWB.
  • Changes in infrastructure detection - helps to detect when the infrastructure nodes have been moved.
  • Whole chain security - data are all protected from the input point until the output interface of the last component.
  • All communication via TCP/IP uses TLS 1.2.
  • The system should undergo penetration test in the future.




How many Anchors and Tags a LEAPS network can have?


The network stack is designed in the way that it always aims to reuse the air-time using an effective mechanism for both Anchors and Tags. In short, if there is a condition that attenuates the signal of any transmitting node in a way it will not influence negatively transmission and reception by any other node then that air-time can be reused. This allows virtually unlimited amount of nodes to be deployed in a spread area where this condition can be created. All of this happens automatically using effective mechanisms implemented in LEAPS.




Can I use the unused GPIOs on the module?


Yes, there are GPIOs available for your applications. They can be controlled via API - UART, SPI or MQTT.




Is it possible to send data between the Anchors/Tags and the server?


Yes, depending on the profile it is possible to send data from the Anchors or Tags to the LEAPS Server. There two types of data

  • Uplink - data from the Anchors and Tags to the LEAPS Server.
  • Downlink - data from the LEAPS Server to the Anchors or Tags.




What API interfaces are available?


LEAPS modules can be configured and data can be handled using the following APIs

  • Bluetooth - New API over encrypted channel helps to properly handle data fragmentation commonly experienced on Bluetooth. The API is in TLV format and it supports the same command set as used for UART, SPI and USB (in the future).
  • UART - TLV binary format
  • SPI - TLV binary format
  • USB - TLV binary format (in the future)
  • Shell over UART - Debug shell in human readable format




What does LEAPS profile mean, and how is it unique from variant?


Variant is pricing model. LEAPS modules are offered in 3 variants with different sets of supported networking profiles. The users can choose what would best fit for their applications and budgets. Profile is how the network protocol is organized. Each profile is designed to provide optimal performance for a specific type of applications. Depending on variant, one or several profiles is supported. The user has to select the profile which best fit its application.





Server and Tools

How to force uninstall of LEAPS Android Manager application?


On Samsung Tablet: Settings -> Apps -> Storage (at the bottom) -> Applications -> LEAPS Android Manager -> Uninstall




What interfaces can be used for communication with the backend system?


When the gateway approach is used in tracking and data telemetry, LEAPS provides various connectors for communication with the systems on the internet network. The following connectors are currently supported

  • MQTT version 3.1.1 or newer.
The following picture illustrates interfacing between LEAPS and internet network.





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Check out our FAQ or send us a message. We will get back to you shortly.

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