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Refinery Tour | How adding Private Wireless delivered true pervasive connectivity

Come on a journey to discover how truly pervasive wireless connectivity radically improves productivity, reduces downtime and increases operational efficiencies.

Contributed by: Vanlin Sathya

Research Engineer/Senior Research Member, CTO Office, Celona

Improved productivity

Reduced downtime

Increased operational efficiency

Where Wi-Fi goes wrong

It’s a sprawling web of harsh, metal-heavy infrastructure, spanning many thousands of acres. Despite the enormity and ruggedness of a refinery’s terrain, operators continue to rely on spotty and unpredictable Wi-Fi for plant-wide connectivity.


Use Cases

When you address the connectivity challenges posed by Wi-Fi, you immediately open up the enormous potential of Industry 4.0 technology.

Deploying private networks for efficiency and plant safety

Routine inspections are still a manual process in most refinery and semi-industrial environments. Why? Because without reliable connectivity, pen and paper, or an offline device that is later synced has long been the norm.

But with Private Wireless, your technicians can be connected no matter their location, or the device they’re using.

Going around the plant, they can capture images and footage in real-time that is synced back to centralized systems and relevant people notified. If there is an issue, they can video call with supervisors and experts to share live footage and resolve issues quickly.

This same network can also seamlessly connect:

IoT sensors and digital twins

worker communication and safety devices

robotics in hazardous environments, and

wireless security cameras for surveillance and safety.

A real-life comparison of Wi-Fi and private wireless

Private Wireless in refineries is changing the equation in terms of coverage, integration, capabilities and cost-effectiveness.Site is the equivalent of 260 football fields

Convenient AP deployment for lowered TCO

  • Access points can be setup on existing poles, roof tops and structures where power and internet is already available
  • There is no requirement for trenching and cabling, meaning the TCO of private wireless is just a fraction of  Wi-Fi
  • With a directional or omni antenna the signal can be adjusted for optimal coverage just where its exactly needed.
  • Celona’s outdoor Access Points (shown here) have IP66 rating and are waterproof
  • Celona also offers Access Points with C1D2 certification for use in hazardous environments




Private Wireless


Validated performance across the plant

The Celona 5G LAN solution consistently drives higher transmit power, lower noise floor, and managed dedicated spectrum with low wireless interference. We know because everything is meticulously tracked and measured.

A performance walkback

In this site walk-through we can see good coverage (greater than -110dBm RSRP) throughout the refinery. Seamless mobility handoff between the 10 APs can be observed (as seen in the PCI changes during the walkback).


Other network stats


Device experience via Celona Orchestrator

Celona Orchestrator is our cloud-based network administration platform

This chart shows about 50-60 connections per hour for a week, with 100% attach success rate

This chart shows that all devices on the network experience good connectivity, throughput and latency.