arduino with xbee home automation need some help

hi to all friends.

i'm planning to design a sensor network via xbees. as a stranger to zigbees, i have a lot of questions.

my design is ; i will have 2 nodes and 1 gateway. also gateway will have some sensors and it will have ethernet shield. i will collect data's from other nodes and i will send them to web page.

1) i will use dht11, flame and air quality sensors and a relay. do i have to use arduino on each node ? i saw that most of the projects used just xbees for collecting sensor datas. but later, i will improve each node and add some specifications (extra sensors etc.) if using xbee with that sensors, how many sensors can i connect that ? and how i will program the xbee for sensors ?

2) the area of the sensor network quite big. and i have some walls. thick walls. if i use xbee series 2 50mW wire antenna and if my wall's thick is about a meter, is there any problem occurs ? (between the last node and gateway, there will be 3 walls and about 35 meter distance.) and i heard that, if a node have long distance to gateway, and if there is a closer node (as a router) can information jump over that router to get reach gateway ( coordinator)

3) i saw a lot of AT and API stuff on internet. i understand that API mode for multiple nodes, AT mode for p2p nodes. i know i will use API mode. but if i dont use arduino on nodes, how can i understand which data comes from which node ? and which sensor on the node ?

4) after zigbee installation, i will change it with ipv6 (6LowPAN). is there anyone that using arduino on 6LowPAN ? (i'm asking this for future questions :D ).

i searched a lot but i couldn't clearify there questions. i have never worked with RF stuff. but i'm not bad on programming (i did these project using just wires and a gateway, but there are billions of cable and i dont like this mess. also i want to improve my skills ).

regards. hakki.

i will collect data's from other nodes and i will send them to web page.

No, you won't. If the Arduino with Ethernet shield is a server, you can serve up a page that contains the sensor data. If the Arduino with Ethernet shield is a client, you can make requests of a server, asking the server to store the data in a way that other clients can ask for it.

do i have to use arduino on each node ?

That depends on the exact sensors you are using. If they are Serial, I2C, or SPI, then, yes, you need an Arduino to get the data from the sensors. If they are simple analog or digital sensors, you do not need an Arduino.

if using xbee with that sensors, how many sensors can i connect that ?

You've got fingers and toes. Count the pins on the XBee. Count the pins on the sensors.

and how i will program the xbee for sensors ?

The same way that you program the ECU in your car. You don't. You configure the XBees to collect data from pins, and send it.

if i use xbee series 2 50mW wire antenna and if my wall's thick is about a meter, is there any problem occurs ?

Don't you think that the material the walls are made of will have some bearing on whether there will be problems?

if a node have long distance to gateway, and if there is a closer node (as a router) can information jump over that router to get reach gateway ( coordinator)

The data will go through the router, if that provides a better path between the sender and the recipient. It will "jump over" the router, if the router adds no value.

but if i dont use arduino on nodes, how can i understand which data comes from which node ? and which sensor on the node ?

If you have the XBee read any analog or digital pins, you MUST use API mode. In API mode, the packet contains the address of the sender. If you have an Arduino read the sensors, you can use AT or API mode. If you use API mode, the library handles storing the sender ID in the packet. If you use AT mode, YOU must make sure the packet contains some sort of sender ID.

4) after zigbee installation, i will change it with ipv6

XBees are radios. They are not IP devices.

thanks for reply PaulS. you cleared my head from a lot of mess.

i just need to rearrenge one of my question ;

i know that some of the power vanishes on the wall. but, is it possible to communicate via two xbee s2 50mW behind a steel structured, thick walls (3 wall) with about 30-40 meters away ?

also, i saw that on some tutorials and videos, they just used serial communication. is it because of showing basics ? or is there something wrong with the xbee library ?

and i just wanted to said i will use this modules with 6LowPAN stack afterwards. i'm in researching phase. but first of all, i need to clearify and buy some xbee modules :)

but, is it possible to communicate via two xbee s2 50mW behind a steel structured, thick walls (3 wall) with about 30-40 meters away ?

If this question means that there are 3 walls, 3 feet thick, solid steel, then the answer is no. No radio is going to penetrate 9 feet of steel.