EKM 485Bee - Zigbee Wireless Node for RS-485 Mesh Network
Description: Hardwired RS-485 to Wireless Zigbee Mesh Network
Voltage: 6 to 24 volts DC
Model: 485Bee v2.1.5
Price increased 7/29/2022 due to low inventory and long lead time for the XBee radio modules (part number xbp9b-dmst-002). We hope to lower the price once we have more inventory.
Make any EKM-Omnimeter into a wireless submeter.
The EKM-485Bee replaces the hardwired links in your RS-485 network with wireless zigbee mesh links.
Use this device if you are unable to run wires between meters or between meters and the communication converter. You can have one meter per 485Bee or 256 meters per 485Bee to make a mesh network.
Works with our 9600 baud Omnimeter Models only. Does not work well with the slower communication speeds of our legacy v.2 meters.
Range of 200m with the supplied antenna. This can be extended to up to a mile line-of-sight by using focused high gain antennas.
This item includes the 485Bee, the 900 MHz DigiMesh RP-SMA Radio, and the 900 MHz antenna.
The 485Bee powers the radio and supplies RS-485.
Radios come pre-configured to replace the RS-485 communications wire.
These are designed to be used in areas where it is difficult to run an RS-485 communication wire.
You will need at least 2 of these to create both ends of the Zigbee mesh network.
Requires 6 to 24 volt DC power to operate. Power can be supplied via the center-positive barrel jack or terminal block connections. Power supply is not included and must be sourced separately. We offer a wall wart style 12 Volt Power Supply for this purpose. We also offer a 12 Volt DIN Rial Mountable Power Supply option, for 485Bees that are installed in or near the Omnimeter, Push3, and/or enclosure.
The 485Bee can also share a 12V power supply with a Push3 by using one of these 12V Splitters.
LED Indication of Power, RSSI, RS-485 In, and RS-485 Out.
Check out the Communication Diagram showing how the 485Bee can be used to create a wireless zigbee mesh network to connect all of your meters together. You can have up to 20,000 485Bee Radios in 1 mesh network (essentially unlimited). Each 485Bee will strengthen and boost the signal of the mesh network. 485Bees can also be setup to be on different channels if you want to have separate networks in the same physical area.
For more information about our products and services, we encourage you to visit our online Knowledge Base, which provides spec sheets, videos, tutorials, FAQs, diagrams, and more.
Spec Sheet: Wireless 485Bee Spec Sheet
QUESTIONS & ANSWERSAsk a Question
Is it possible to feed one push with two omnimeters, one wireless and one hard wired? If yes is there a diagram showing how this would need to happen?
Yes, you can connect up to 50 Omnimeters to a single EKM Push gateway. Some Omnimeters can be hardwired to the Push, others can be connected wirelessly (in this case the Push being hardwired to a 485Bee). Here is a diagram showing how multiple Omnimeters and 485Bees can connect to a Push.
Has this device been submitted for type approval in either Australia or Papua New Guinea?
No, the 485Bee does not have any certifications related to Type Approval in Australia or Papua New Guinea.
Is it possible to use an extension cable on the antenna (standard coax type?), and how much will that attenuate the signal?
Yes, it seems possible, we have not tried it here ourselves though. You can search for "low loss RPSMA extension". Im not sure how much this will affect the signal, I guess it would depend on the length of the extension and the grade of the extension cable.
Instead of extening the RPSMA connection we tend to just locate the 485Bee remotely from the Omnimeter or from the Push, just run a CAT 5 cable to the 485Bee that carries 12VDC in one pair and RS485 in the other pair. THe RS485 is small enough that you can fit it inside of an enclosure made of PVC pipe. You will get the best signal strength between 485Bees the higher they are off the ground, with the best line of sight possible, away from any objects or buildings.
Is the $100 cost per item, or for a pair (as two is required for this to operate)
The pricing is for one radio unit. We sell them individually as some people will need multiple radios for multiple meters at a single location.
Thanks - Seth, EKM Metering
Can this be mounted outdoors, and do you have a mounting enclosure for it?
Yes, you can mount the EKM 485Bee outdoors if you put it in an enclosure. Moisture is the enemy, so you will need to locate it in a sheltered area, or in a really watertight enclosure. We like to make our own enclosure out of a piece of 2" PVC pipe. We use a 2" pipe cap, a 2" length of pipe, a 2" threaded x slip fitting, a 2" threaded cap. We just drill a hole in the threaded 2" cap that is big enough to accept a CAT5 data cable. The CAT5 cable is used for the RS485 data as well as the 12VDC to power the 485Bee. The advantage of this is that you then have a 485Bee inside of a pipe enclosure that you can mount to a tall pole if you need to get the best line of sight connection to all other 485Bees in your network. If all of that seems like too much effort, you could also just put the 485Bee inside one of our Large Waterproof Enclosures.