Produced by the WBA’s Wi-Fi 6/6E for IIOT work group, led by Cisco, Deutsche Telekom and Intel the white paper provides an overview of Wi-Fi 6 and 6E capabilities suitable for sensors and other IIoT applications, such as:

Scheduled access (SA) enabled by trigger-based (TB) uplink (UL) orthogonal frequency domain multiple access (OFDMA) in Wi-Fi 6 provides the ability to reduce or eliminate contention and bound latency (e.g. 99 percentile).

This leads to increased levels of determinism applicable to all real-time and IIOT applications.

Wi-Fi 6 provides deterministic QoS capabilities, such as the traffic prioritization that is a key component of Time-Sensitive Networking (TSN) for Industry 4.0 applications.

Another example is Multi-link operation (MLO), a capability that helps provide high reliability for applications that cannot tolerate any packet loss.

The Fine Timing Measurement (FTM) protocol specified in IEEE 802.11-2016 enables both time-synchronization but also precise indoor range and position/location determination.

This can be used for Autonomous Mobile Robots (AMR) and Automatic Guided Vehicles (AGV) applications such as route planning, exception handling and safety-related aspects including collision avoidance based on proximity.

This capability does not require additional Wi-Fi infrastructure, so manufacturers can implement it immediately, for instance as part of their Industry 4.0 migration.

The target-wake-time (TWT) feature added to Wi-Fi 6 provides more efficient power-save and scheduling enhancement.

This capability is a good fit for battery-powered IIoT nodes that need to transmit only infrequently, such as a sensor that uploads data only when a motor’s temperature exceeds a certain threshold.

Wi-Fi 6E supports up to 1.2 GHz of spectrum, making it ideal for use cases that require both multi-Gb/s throughput and determinism, such as industrial AR/VR/MR and sensor fusion.

The 52-page report also includes RF/network deployment guidelines for factory, warehouse, logistics and other use cases.

For example, it provides recommendations for leveraging 802.11ax/Wi-Fi 6 scheduling capabilities to optimize traffic patterns and manage critical QoS requirements.

Another example is using high-gain directional antennas to increase channel re-use rates and work around metal racks and other signal-attenuating features commonly found in warehouses.