Newsletter #9: News from the FRED (Node-RED) team at Sense Tecnic

News from the FRED (Node-RED) team at Sense TecnicIn this issue:

  • New MQTT service
  • LoRaWAN and the IIoT
  • New tutorials (MQTT and another Watson tutorial)
  • New Nodes

Previous newsletters:


New MQTT service for FRED

We’ve recently launched our new MQTT service. This is an industrial strength MQTT implementation integrated into FRED. We’ve created a slick management interface to allow you to create connections, manage topics, track messages etc. We also have a public topics service so you can access interesting public data – and share your data if you want.

The service is only available to paid users (FRED Tall or Grande plans) although free plan users can access the interface and browse public topics. If you want to use the service, then please upgrade your free plan to a paid plan using the UPGRADE NOW button on the management panel in FRED.

Full documentation is available:

Along with a comprehensive tutorial:

LoRaWAN and Industrial IoT

We’ve been having fun playing around with the wide area, low power IoT network LoRaWAN. For those of you unfamiliar with LoRaWAN, it’s a relatively new protocol targeting the IoT. It’s key characteristics are that it operates in the unlicensed spectrum – so anybody can set up a network. It’s wide area (5-10km) and low bandwidth, but the low bandwidth means it’s also low power – operating up-to 3 years on a single battery!

We’ve got several of our customers using LoRaWAN. We highlighted work by Industrial IoT in the UK recently, but we also have a customer in the US using it for farm and crop monitoring and have been contacted recently by one in Australia focused on power monitoring.

It’s relatively easy to build your own gateway – using a Pi and a LoRa card – and the sensor nodes can be built with arduinos. We’ve written a couple of blog posts about building your own LoRaWAN gateway and devices

Anybody can build a network, but there’s also an effort underway by a group of enthusiasts to build a free global network – the Thing Network – which we’ve also been experimenting with. To support that we’ve added a Thing Network Node to FRED. If you want to learn more, check out our blog post on building the gateway and experimenting with it.

New tutorials and nodes

MQTT: We’ve been busy over the last month developing our new MQTT service- as we mentioned we’ve also created a new tutorial to describe how to use the MQTT service:

Using STS-MQTT with FRED

Using the public topics in STS-MQTT with FRED

Watson analytics & AI: In addition to the MQTT tutorials, we’ve found time to create a new tutorial describing the use of the Watson sentiment analysis (tone). The tutorial walks you through installing the Watson nodes in FRED, creating an IBM Watson account, setting up the Tone service, and using it from your flow in FRED.

Using the Watson Cognitive services: tone

This tutorial follows on from a previous tutorial we wrote for Watson showing how to build an AI Chat Bot

Building an AI chatbot with Node-RED and Watson

IIoT and OPC: We’ve refreshed our IIoT tutorial about the use of FRED and UPC-UA which is a secure architecture focused on industrial automation. OPC UA extends the highly successful OPC communication protocol, enabling data acquisition and information modelling and communication between the plant floor and the enterprise reliably and securely.

IIoT tutorial describing how to use OPC-UA

 There’s a variety of documentation available to help you get the most out of FRED and Node-RED – our main set of tutorials are available via the link below.
In addition, a more general set of lectures is available at:
Node-RED Programming Guide

and our user documentation for FRED is available at:

Need help with Node-RED – we’re experts!   

  • Custom nodes or flows.
  • Hosted Node-RED, branded for your organization or customers.
  • Hosted IoT technologies, MQTT, InfluxDB, etc
  • IoT app development and other professional services

Contact us at:

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