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On 20th December 2011, Linear Technology Corporation, a leader in high performance analog integrated circuits, announced the acquisition of Dust Networks, Inc., a leading provider of low power wireless sensor network (WSN) technology. With the growing importance of machine-to-machine (M2M) communications to enable remote data acquisition, low power wireless sensing is an emerging solution for many end-markets, including industrial process control, building automation and data center energy management.

Founded in 2002, Dust Networks is a pioneer in the field of wireless sensor networking. Using standards-based network technology, Dust’s broad portfolio includes SmartMesh IP, SmartMesh Industrial/WirelessHART™ and ZigBee. It also provides complete wireless systems solutions, including IEEE 802.15.4 mote modules, mote-on-chips and network and security management software and hardware. SmartMesh networks comprise a self-forming mesh of nodes, or “motes,” which collect and relay data, and a network manager that monitors and manages network performance and sends data to the host application. This technology is now the basis for a number of seminal networking standards. Linear Technology Corporation’s products provide an essential bridge between the analog world and the digital electronics used in industrial, communications, networking, automotive, computer, medical, instrumentation, military, aerospace, consumer end-markets and other harsh environment systems. Linear Technology produces power management, data conversion, signal conditioning, RF and interface ICs, and μModule subsystems.

Dust Networks has strong relationships with customers such as GE and Emerson, and green companies such as Vigilent and Streetline Networks. Its technology can be found in a variety of monitoring and control solutions, including data center energy management, renewable energy, remote monitoring, and transportation. If integrated well into Linear’s portfolio, Linear can offer a complete high performance WSN solution. Also, Dust Networks’ low power radio and software technology complements Linear’s strengths in industrial instrumentation, power management and energy harvesting technology.

ABI Research has published a report on Industrial Wireless Sensor Networks, outlining market trends in WSN within the industrial automation industry. For additional information on the WSN eco-system, please refer to the variety of products in our WSN Research Service.