Overview

Asentria SiteBoss products are Linux-based hardware appliances designed to manage and help automate remote communication sites for telecom operators. As SiteBoss products have evolved from doing simple alarming, the new emphasis is to provide more abilities to do automation and control of power (eg. Generator/ATS control), security (eg. RFID card physical access, cameras), and environment (Direct HVAC control) at remote sites. Below is an overview of common applications of the unit.

Power

Site power is one of the most critical variables at any telecom site. SiteBoss units enable automation related to power to increase site life and reduce costs. The list below is a representative list of variables that the SiteBoss can easily monitor, enabling various applications and automations to be created.

Power – Generator/ATS Control – The SiteBoss can centralize control and management of generators across all makes and models. We can provide operational data on fuel levels, detect fuel theft, and remotely or autonomously start and stop the generator. Application examples include remotely exercising all generators to search for generators that fail to start prior to hurricane landfall, measuring diesel after a storm event to prioritize re-fueling, or checking on backhaul availability to determine whether to run generator or not. Automation can be created to extend site life when site is running on diesel fuel.

AC Power Monitoring – The SiteBoss can be integrated to most power meters. See chart below for particular power meter integrations. One use is billing of AC charges in a multi-tenant site.

AC Power Sensing – Simple ability to sense presence or absence of current on a 120V/240V AC circuit.

DC Current Monitoring – Ability to measure DC currents on circuits through use of current transformers

DC Rectifier Integration – Access and gather data from DC rectifier “smart controller”.

Fuel Sensor Monitoring for Generators (Diesel or LP) – Measuring fuel levels using float, pressure, or ultrasonic fuel sensors, or by directly interfacing to an intelligent generator.

Gas Pressure Monitoring for Generators – Measuring presence or absence of natural gas for natural gas powered generators common in roof-top site applications.

Load Shedding – Ability to shut-off DC circuits to extend site life when AC power is lost.

Security

Direct physical security of a site can be directly related to site resiliency. Theft or someone directly harming a site can both lead to network downtime.

In some cases, without a method of measuring variables at the site, theft or damage could occur and not be known about until a crisis caused a site to fail. A simple example of this would be diesel fuel theft, with no knowledge of the low fuel condition until the generator fails to start when needed.

Indoor/Outdoor Door Sensors – Simple monitoring of doors opening and closing.

Simple Motion Detectors – Simple monitoring of motion within a site.

Door Access Control
– Simple control of door strike – Control door strike via a relay to allow access.
– RFID Card Interface – Custom solutions to manage Wiegand controllable card reader access controllers

Tower Lighting Alarms – Interface to tower light control systems for alarming.

IP Camera Integration – Integrate to any IP based camera.

Environment

Site environment is a key variable in both the cost of operating the site as well as the resiliency of the site.

Several simple important variables can be measured, but the most interesting applications relate to the SiteBoss taking over network-wide control of the HVAC.

HVAC Control – Manage all HVAC regardless of make and model.
– Smart Controller Interface – Interface to intelligent HVAC controllers to provide access and control of the smart controller.
– Direct HVAC control – Replace old thermostats directly with functionality within the SiteBoss. Enables many advanced HVAC control functions, as well as allowing centralized control of HVAC from the NOC.

Temperature/Humidity – Monitor temperature via Asentria’s own pre-calibrated sensors

Smoke – Monitor for presence of smoke. Uses Asentria-provided smoke detector.

Water – Monitor for presence of water. Uses Asentria-provided water sensor.

Airflow – Monitor for presence or absence of airflow. Uses Asentria-provided airflow sensor

Networking Applications
Scripting/RESTful API

Many of the most interesting applications relate to the SiteBoss’ onboard scripting language, and the new RESTful API. The SiteBoss is connected to all major site sub-systems, and can make decisions based on complex logic. Two brief examples are listed below, but there are many new possible applications using these functions.

Scripting
– Site Hardening – SiteBoss recognizes AC main power is lost to a site. SiteBoss doesn’t start generator unless battery charge is below a certain level, and temp is above a certain level, extending diesel fuel and site life.

RESTful API
– Energy Efficiency – A SiteBoss with integrated HVAC card is controlling HVAC at sites. Using the RESTful API, network wide changes to set points can be made, and even made continuously, to optimize HVAC at sites and across the network. Via the API, telemetry data on HVAC performance across the entire network can be retrieved and analyzed.

Network Growth

A common problem in mobile network networks is a lack of Ethernet ports at the site or IP addresses on the network. A SiteBoss can be equipped with a four-port or eight-port Ethernet Layer 2 switch. This solves several problems:

Ethernet Ports – More “smart” controllers are being added to sites and site routers don’t have the physical ports to accommodate them. The SiteBoss adds additional Ethernet ports for expansion at the site.

IP Addresses – IP address management is complicated by the addition of networked devices at sites. The SiteBoss provides a separate network for attached devices with IP addresses served from the SiteBoss by DHCP. Only the IP address of the SiteBoss needs to be added to the network.

Security – Many operators have network security concerns, and the SiteBoss can perform as the single approved secure device on the network, with non-approved devices on the separate network created by the SiteBoss.

Network Secure Remote IP Access

The primary methods for secure remote IP access are listed below. This function most often enables someone within the NOC to communicate securely to the SiteBoss unit, and then pass through the SiteBoss unit to communicate to other equipment at the site.

Ethernet to Ethernet (or Serial)– In some cases intelligent devices (eg. HVAC, generator, or rectifier smart controllers) are not considered secure enough to be placed directly onto a network, and can be directly connected to the internal Ethernet or serial ports on a SiteBoss for access.

Wireless Modem to Ethernet (or Serial) – A wireless modem option can be used to connect to the SiteBoss, and then connect through the SiteBoss unit to any attached Ethernet or serial based device.

SNMP Applications

SNMP Traps – Sending SNMP traps based on recognizing a fault is one of the most common uses for a SiteBoss unit.

SNMP OID Creation – If polling of the SiteBoss is preferred to SNMP traps, the SiteBoss also has OID’s corresponding to all measured values that can be polled. New OID’s can be created to create new values at the site.

SNMP Proxy – Allows SNMP agents to poll devices that are connected to the SIteBoss, but which are not on the same network as the agent. A means of keeping smart controllers that aren’t considered fully secure off the primary network.

SNMP Trap Capture – SNMP traps can be sent from local devices at a telecom site directly to the SiteBoss. The SiteBoss can then take various pre-set actions based on the trap received, or information contained within the traps.

SNMP Polling – SiteBoss can poll specific OID’s from other SNMP devices, and build internal files of that data that can be used by our alarming or scripting functions.

Protocol Conversions

ASCII to SNMP
MODBUS to SNMP
XML to SNMP
HTML to SNMP

Legacy Alarm Applications

Asentria can provide support as an upgrade path for legacy alarms. Asentria can create custom cables or adapters to enable an easy way to move legacy contact alarms to the SiteBoss. This is common where alarm contacts have been terminated from a punch-down block to a legacy device (eg. Badger RTU, or 2G/3G RAN that is being decommissioned). The SiteBoss can simplify the removal of legacy devices by taking over these alarms with a minimum of new cabling labor.

DC Reboot/ AC Reboot
DC Reboot

Asentria has a range of abilities to directly reboot or shutdown DC circuits. The two most common applications are listed below. The SiteBoss can switch 10A, 30A, 60A, and 90A circuits (@ 48V) depending on configuration.

DC Reboot – This application most commonly involves a wireless modem as well. If the primary communications path to the site is disrupted, the wireless modem can be used as an alternate out-of-band method of communicating to the site. Troubleshooting can occur over this connection via the SiteBoss, and devices (eg. Microwave) can be re-booted to re-establish primary communication and prevent a truck roll.

Load-Shedding – This application most often involves the SiteBoss detecting a loss of AC power to the site, and taking independent action to reduce power usage at the site by shutting down controlled equipment at the site.

AC Reboot

Done less often than DC based reboot. In some cases the SiteBoss has been integrated to intelligent AC PDU’s to control them through the SiteBoss interface.

Mobile Network Operators

Towerco’s face different challenges than mobile network operators when it comes to managing their tower locations.

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Mobile Network Operators

Mobile network operators are Asentria’s largest and most developed set of customers. We have a number of projects that are for thousands of sites and two that are for more than ten thousand sites. More information on those projects can be found HERE . The primary things we do for mobile network operators are:

Power – Generator/ATS Control – The SiteBoss can centralize control and management of generators across all makes and models. We can provide operational data on fuel levels, detect fuel theft, and remotely or autonomously start and stop the generator. Application examples include remotely exercising all generators to search for generators that fail to start prior to hurricane landfall, measuring diesel after a storm event to prioritize re-fueling, or checking on backhaul availability to determine whether to run generator or not. Automation can be created to extend site life when site is running on diesel fuel.

Environment – HVAC – The SiteBoss can perform as a direct HVAC controller across all HVAC makes and models. This allows for large amounts of telemetry data to be gathered centrally, enabling identification of outliers or network-wide tuning of HVAC set points. Automation involving HVAC can also be created.

Access – Fiber or Wireless Connections – If no Ethernet connection is available at a site, the SiteBoss can be configured to include a variety of wireless or fiber interfaces.

Security – Door Access Control/Cameras – SiteBoss can provide door access control and security cameras and integration.

Power – DC Reboot – Asentria has a wide range of DC reboot products to reboot DC devices. This function is most often built into new cabinet deployments, or retrofitted into sites that are particularly distant where it is worth trying to reboot equipment prior to doing a service visit.

Network – Additional Ethernet Ports – More “smart” controllers are being added to sites and site routers don’t have the physical ports to accommodate them. The SiteBoss adds additional Ethernet ports for expansion at the site.

Network – Legacy Alarm Applications – Asentria can provide support as an upgrade path for legacy alarms. Asentria can create custom cables or adapters to enable an easy way to move legacy contact alarms to our device. The SiteBoss can simplify the removal of legacy devices by taking over these alarms with a minimum of new cabling.

Applications Overview – See also the Applications Overview as all those functions are being performed within our base of mobile network operator customers.

Towerco’s

Towerco’s face different challenges than mobile network operators when it comes to managing their tower locations.

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Towerco's

Towerco’s face different challenges than mobile network operators when it comes to managing their tower locations. The responsibilities for tower site power, security, and environment may rest with either the towerco or could be the responsibility of the mobile network operator tenants. Towercos have significant concerns with both operational efficiency and network reliability.

Asentria products can help in a number of primary ways for tower operators, so applications shown in our Mobile Network Operator section may also apply. The primary things we do for Towerco are:

Power – Generator/ATS Control – The SiteBoss can centralize control and management of generators across all makes and models. We can provide operational data on fuel levels, detect fuel theft, and remotely or autonomously start and stop the generator. Application examples include remotely exercising all generators to search for generators that fail to start prior to hurricane landfall, measuring diesel after a storm event to prioritize re-fueling, or checking on backhaul availability to determine whether to run generator or not. Automation can be created to extend site life when site is running on diesel fuel.

Power – Multi-Tenant Billing. The SiteBoss units can work with AC meters to create and deliver billable information on customer’s power usage.

Security – Door Access Control/Cameras – SiteBoss can provide door access control and security cameras and integration.

Environment – HVAC – The SiteBoss can perform as a direct HVAC controller across all HVAC makes and models. This allows for large amounts of telemetry data to be gathered centrally, enabling identification of outliers or network-wide tuning of HVAC set points. Automation involving HVAC can also be created.

Access – Fiber or Wireless Connections. If no Ethernet connection is available at a site, the SiteBoss can be configured to include a variety of wireless or fiber interfaces.

Applications Overview – Check the Applications Overview as all those functions are being performed within our base of mobile network operator customers.

Public Safety

Public Safety networks face a somewhat set of challenges due to criticality of the infrastructure.

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Public Safety

Public Safety networks face a somewhat set of challenges due to criticality of the infrastructure. These networks don’t typically consist of as many radio sites as a mobile operator’s network, so the benefits aren’t as great from seeking power efficiency, though that is a useful side benefit. In these networks Asentria is likely to do the most complete solutions related to site security. Another priority is automation to extend the life of the site during a crisis.

Asentria products can be used in public safety networks similarly to any other network. The primary things we do for towercos are:

Security – Door Access Control/Cameras – SiteBoss can provide door access control and security cameras and integration.

Power – Generator/ATS Control – The SiteBoss can centralize control and management of generators across all makes and models. We can provide operational data on fuel levels, detect fuel theft, and remotely or autonomously start and stop the generator. Application examples include remotely exercising all generators to search for generators that fail to start prior to hurricane landfall, measuring diesel after a storm event to prioritize re-fueling, or checking on backhaul availability to determine whether to run generator or not. Automation can be created to extend site life when site is running on diesel fuel.

Applications Overview – Check the Applications Overview as any of those functions could be used by a public safety network operator.

Applications – Radio/TV Broadcast

Asentria products can help in a number of primary ways for radio and tv broadcast network operators, so applications shown in our Mobile Network Operator section may also apply. The primary things we do for towercos are:

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Radio/TV Broadcast

Asentria products can help in a number of primary ways for radio and tv broadcast network operators, so applications shown in our Mobile Network Operator section may also apply. The primary things we do for towercos are:

Power – Generator/ATS Control – The SiteBoss can centralize control and management of generators across all makes and models. We can provide operational data on fuel levels, detect fuel theft, and remotely or autonomously start and stop the generator. Application examples include remotely exercising all generators to search for generators that fail to start prior to hurricane landfall, measuring diesel after a storm event to prioritize re-fueling, or checking on backhaul availability to determine whether to run generator or not. Automation can be created to extend site life when site is running on diesel fuel.

Access – Fiber or Wireless Connections. If no Ethernet connection is available at a site, the SiteBoss can be configured to include a variety of wireless or fiber interfaces.

Power – AC Reboot – Integration to other intelligent AC PDU’s to reboot AC powered equipment at remote sites.

Network – Legacy Alarm Applications – Asentria can provide support as an upgrade path for legacy alarms. Asentria can create custom cables or adapters to enable an easy way to move legacy contact alarms to our device. The SiteBoss can simplify the removal of legacy devices by taking over these alarms with a minimum of new cabling.

Applications Overview – Check the Applications Overview as any of those functions could be used by a radio/tv network broadcast operator.

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