LoRa Module with antenna and SPI wires attached.jpg
A LoRa module
Developed bySemtech
Connector typeSPI/I2C
Compatible hardwareSX1278
Physical range10km+

LoRa (Long Range) is a low-power wide-area network (LPWAN) technology. It is based on spread spectrum modulation techniques derived from chirp spread spectrum (CSS) technology.[1][2] It was developed by Cycleo of Grenoble, France and acquired by Semtech the founding member of the LoRa Alliance.[3]


LoRa uses license-free sub-gigahertz radio frequency bands like 433 MHz, 868 MHz (Europe), 915 MHz (Australia and North America) and 923 MHz (Asia). LoRa enables long-range transmissions (more than 10 km in rural areas) with low power consumption.[4] The technology covers the physical layer, while other technologies and protocols such as LoRaWAN (Long Range Wide Area Network) cover the upper layers.

In January 2018, new LoRa chipsets were announced, with reduced power consumption, increased transmission power, and reduced size compared to older generation.[5]

LoRa devices have geolocation capabilities used for triangulating positions of devices via timestamps from gateways.[6]

LoRa and LoRaWAN permit long-range connectivity for Internet of Things (IoT) devices in different types of industries.[7]

LoRa PHY[edit]

The LoRa physical layer protocol is proprietary; therefore, there is no freely available official documentation, though Semtech has provided an overview of the modulation and other relevant technical specifications.[1] However, several independent researchers have analyzed it and documented their findings.[8][9]

LoRa uses a proprietary spread spectrum modulation that is similar to and a derivative of Chirp spread spectrum (CSS) modulation. This allows LoRa to trade off data rate for sensitivity with a fixed channel bandwidth by selecting the amount of spread used (a selectable radio parameter from 7 to 12). This spreading factor determines the data rate and dictates the sensitivity of a radio. In addition, LoRa uses Forward Error Correction coding to improve resilience against interference. LoRa's high range is characterized by extremely high wireless link budgets, around 155 dB to 170 dB.[10]


Since LoRa defines the lower physical layer, the upper networking layers were lacking. LoRaWAN is one of several protocols that were developed to define the upper layers of the network. LoRaWAN is a cloud-based medium access control (MAC) layer protocol but acts mainly as a network layer protocol for managing communication between LPWAN gateways and end-node devices as a routing protocol, maintained by the LoRa Alliance. Version 1.0 of the LoRaWAN specification was released in June 2015.[11]

LoRaWAN defines the communication protocol and system architecture for the network, while the LoRa physical layer enables the long-range communication link. LoRaWAN is also responsible for managing the communication frequencies, data rate, and power for all devices.[12] Devices in the network are asynchronous and transmit when they have data available to send. Data transmitted by an end-node device is received by multiple gateways, which forward the data packets to a centralized network server.[13] The network server filters duplicate packets, performs security checks, and manages the network.[citation needed] Data is then forwarded to application servers.[14] The technology shows high reliability for the moderate load, however, it has some performance issues related to sending acknowledgements.[15]

LoRa Alliance[edit]

The LoRa Alliance is an association created in 2015 to support LoRaWAN (long range wide-area network) protocol as well as ensure interoperability of all LoRaWAN products and technologies. This open, nonprofit association has over 500 members.[16] Some members of the LoRa Alliance are IBM, Actility, MicroChip, Orange, Cisco, KPN, Swisscom, Semtech, Bouygues Telecom, Singtel, Proximus and Cavagna Group.[17] In 2018, the LoRa Alliance had over 100 LoRaWAN network operators in over 100 countries.[18]

Deployments of LoRa Technology[edit]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b "LoRa Modulation Basics" (PDF).
  2. ^ Chiani, M.; Elzanaty, A. (2019). "On the LoRa Modulation for IoT: Waveform Properties and Spectral Analysis". IEEE Internet of Things Journal. 6 (5): 8463–8470. doi:10.1109/JIOT.2019.2919151. hdl:10754/655888. ISSN 2327-4662.
  3. ^ "Semtech Acquires Wireless Long Range IP Provider Cycleo". Design And Reuse. Retrieved 2019-10-17.
  4. ^ Ramon Sanchez-Iborra; Jesus Sanchez-Gomez; Juan Ballesta-Viñas; Maria-Dolores Cano; Antonio F. Skarmeta (2018). "Performance Evaluation of LoRa Considering Scenario Conditions". Sensors. 18 (3): 772. doi:10.3390/s18030772. PMC 5876541. PMID 29510524.
  5. ^ Corporation, Semtech (2018-01-08). "Semtech Enables IoT of the Future with Next Generation LoRa Platform". GlobeNewswire News Room. Retrieved 2019-10-17.
  6. ^ Fargas, Bernat Carbones; Petersen, Martin Nordal. "GPS-free Geolocation using LoRa in Low-Power WANs" (PDF). DTU Library.
  7. ^ Ram, Prashant (2018-08-07). "LPWAN, LoRa, LoRaWAN and the Internet of Things". Coinmonks. Retrieved 2019-02-09.
  8. ^ Matthew Knight; Balint Seeber (2016). "Decoding LoRa: Realizing a Modern LPWAN with SDR".
  9. ^ Jesus Sanchez-Gomez; Ramon Sanchez-Iborra (2017). "Experimental comparison of LoRa and FSK as IoT-communication-enabling modulations". IEEE Global Communications Conference (Globecom'17): 1–6. doi:10.1109/GLOCOM.2017.8254530. ISBN 978-1-5090-5019-2.
  10. ^ Mohan, Vivek. "10 Things About LoRaWAN & NB-IoT". blog.semtech.com. Retrieved 2019-02-18.
  11. ^ Version 1.0 of the LoRaWAN specification released.
  12. ^ "LoRaWAN For Developers". www.lora-alliance.org. Retrieved 2018-11-23.
  13. ^ "A Comprehensive Look At LPWAN For IoT Engineers & Decision Makers". www.link-labs.com. Retrieved 2017-06-22.
  14. ^ LoRa Alliance (2015). "LoRaWAN: What is it?" (PDF).
  15. ^ Bankov, D.; Khorov, E.; Lyakhov, A. (November 2016). "On the Limits of LoRaWAN Channel Access". 2016 International Conference on Engineering and Telecommunication (EnT): 10–14. doi:10.1109/ent.2016.011. ISBN 978-1-5090-4553-2.
  16. ^ "Semtech's LoRa Alliance grows to 500 members". Pacific Coast Business Times. 2017-06-29. Retrieved 2019-02-09.
  17. ^ "Member Directory | LoRa Alliance". lora-alliance.org. Retrieved 2019-02-09.
  18. ^ "LoRa Alliance passes 100 LoRaWAN network operator milestone". Electronic Products & Technology. 2019-01-25. Retrieved 2019-02-11.
  19. ^ {{Cite web|url=https://www.haystacktechnologies.com/press_release/haystack-announces-gps-asset-tracking-products/}
  20. ^ "A scuola con bluon.urbanway". shop.semiperdo.com. Retrieved 2019-10-14.
  21. ^ "IoT Aims to Track Free-Ranging Reindeer in Finland - 2018-01-19 - Page 1 - RFID Journal". www.rfidjournal.com. Retrieved 2019-02-11.
  22. ^ "IoT boost for Glasgow". Smart Cities World. Retrieved 2019-02-11.
  23. ^ "Kerlink and YEAP! to Collaborate on the Rollout of First LoRaWAN IoT Network in Argentina". IoT Business News. 2017-09-05. Retrieved 2019-02-11.
  24. ^ "American Tower targets two million 2019 Brazilian LoRaWAN connections". enterpriseiotinsights.com. Retrieved 2019-02-11.
  25. ^ "Actillity and Levikom launch world's 1st "open value chain" LoRaWAN IoT network". Actility. 2017-02-15. Retrieved 2019-02-11.
  26. ^ "Holtek Announces Intelligent Fire Alarm MCU SIP Module Integrated with Semtech's LoRa® Technology - Product News - Holtek". www.holtek.com. Retrieved 2019-02-11.
  27. ^ Mu-Hyun, Cho. "SK Telecom launches LoRa-based fire detection solution". ZDNet. Retrieved 2019-02-11.
  28. ^ "Semtech partners with Chinese bike-sharing company". Pacific Coast Business Times. 2017-10-19. Retrieved 2019-02-11.
  29. ^ "Semtech and X-TELIA Implement LoRa Solution for Smart Bus Schedule Signs". www.semtech.com. Retrieved 2019-02-11.
  30. ^ "Semtech-enabled HEX smart exit signs allow safe egress in a fire". FMLink. 2018-09-03. Retrieved 2019-02-11.
  31. ^ "Semtech's LoRa Technology Is Leveraged by Kiwi Technology to Develop Smart Cities in Thailand". www.semtech.com. Retrieved 2019-02-11.
  32. ^ "Practical Parking: PNI Sensor Corporation and Senet Roll Out LPWAN Solution". www.iotevolutionworld.com. Retrieved 2019-02-11.
  33. ^ "Chipsafer Connects Cattle Ranching to the Cloud with LoRa Technology". IoT Business News. 2017-08-31. Retrieved 2019-02-11.
  34. ^ "Beartooth and Semtech's LoRa Technology Provides Reliable Communication in Cellular Outages". IoT Business News. 2017-09-14. Retrieved 2019-02-11.
  35. ^ "First black rhinos protected by sensor-implants in horns". IoT Business News. 2017-09-28. Retrieved 2019-02-11.
  36. ^ "Animal Conservation with LoraWAN - turtles, fish and more". Institute IRNAS. 2018-04-05. Retrieved 2019-02-11.
  37. ^ "IoT is revolutionizing natural disaster prediction - IoT Agenda". internetofthingsagenda.techtarget.com. Retrieved 2019-02-11.
  38. ^ Chin, Spencer (2018-12-05). "LoRA Technology Comes to Aid of Australian Cotton Farmers". Electronic Component News. Retrieved 2019-02-11.
  39. ^ "SenRa and NAS Roll Out Remote Metering for Water & Electricity in India". www.iotevolutionworld.com. Retrieved 2019-02-11.
  40. ^ Staff, Circuit Cellar (2019-02-05). "Utility Metering Solution Taps Semtech's LoRa Technology". Circuit Cellar. Retrieved 2019-02-11.
  41. ^ "Semtech Selected for Smart Irrigation System | San Fernando Valley Business Journal". sfvbj.com. Retrieved 2019-02-11.
  42. ^ "LoRa Solution Offers Wireless View Into Soil Health - 2018-11-09 - Page 1 - RFID Journal". www.rfidjournal.com. Retrieved 2019-02-11.
  43. ^ "Extending LoRaWAN to Receive Messages from Space". electronics360.globalspec.com. Retrieved 2019-02-11.
  44. ^ "Spain pilots smart water technology". Smart Cities World. Retrieved 2019-02-11.
  45. ^ "Dutch firm launches LoRa smart agriculture solution on Senet network". enterpriseiotinsights.com. Retrieved 2019-02-11.
  46. ^ "Semtech Technology Underlies Comcast MachineQ IoT Service in 10 Cities - Telecompetitor". www.telecompetitor.com. Retrieved 2019-02-15.
  47. ^ "Calgary, Alberta unveils 4 new smart city initiatives". Smart Cities Dive. Retrieved 2019-02-15.
  48. ^ "Orange has performed, within the Intelligent City Pilot project, the installation of a LPWA (Low Power Wide Area) network that covers the entire city". Alba Iulia Smartcity. Retrieved 2019-07-17.

Further reading[edit]

External links[edit]