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Are LoRaWAN devices able to transmit compressed/zipped JSON files which are 5-10 Kb big?

Furthermore I've been reading up the LoRaWAN technology to get a better understanding. I would like to have 3 RPIs (A, B and C) where 2 ("A" & "B") of them send zipped/compressed json files to the third one "C". And the plan is to send these json files to a server. Could this be done?

  • LoRa is designed for Long Range, slow data rate communications, and LoRaWAN is an implementation of it. Here is a good description of it and its abilities... github.com/Fluent-networks/floranet/wiki/LoRaWAN-Overview – Wendall May 6 '19 at 16:26
  • The question does not belong to Raspberry Pi. You should better ask on a LoRaWAN forum. – Ingo May 6 '19 at 17:25
  • @Ingo Is there a LoRaWAN.SX? – 3kstc May 6 '19 at 23:11
  • I do not understand your question. What is LoRaWAN.SX? If it is relevant to your question, please edit it. – Ingo May 7 '19 at 7:43
  • @Ingo is there a LoRaWAN StackeXchange (SX) Forum? – 3kstc May 7 '19 at 23:42
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Yes, no, sort of.

I assume you have read the article you linked and found "How to build your own lorawan gateway", with the gateway being raspberry C.

You will also find the datasheet for the RFM69HCW transceiver which reads: "... features of the RFM69HCW include a 66 byte TX/RX FIFO, configurable automatic packet handler..."

In those kind of chips the packet size (if enabled) is fixed. If you have split-second accuracy (microcontroller level) you can get away and drive them in 'continuous mode': not something you will be able to do an a raspberry and/or if you want to maintain your mental sanity.

And anyway, even 1 KB would be huge. In general it will be a bad idea from an RF point of view. Your target should be more like 20 bytes per packet!

Your options are:

  • Install a whole load of software and have a full stack; maybe some will provide big transfer features (IDK if such a thing exists)
  • Get the rid of the whole LoRaWAN stuff altogether, just use the LoRa radios themselves and figure out a way to do the transfer yourself.

Fair access policies will still be an issue, maybe this could interest you.

The outlook seems quite bad to me but we could still wrap up and say yes, it can be done. With some caveats.

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