FreeWave Joins Viasat ELEVATE Partner Program To Provide One-Stop IIoT Solutions

ELEVATE membership will support the IoT providers’ global growth across range of industries including energy, agriculture, utilities, and mining.  CARLSBAD., Calif., December 14, 2023 –  Viasat, Inc. (NASDAQ: VSAT), a global leader in satellite communications, today announced FreeWave Technologies, an industry Internet of Things solution manufacturer, has joined its ELEVATE program. ELEVATE is a growth program, ecosystem and marketplace for ambitious IoT solution providers, connectivity wholesalers, enablers and OEMs who want to work with Viasat to use its network and footprint to scale. As an ELEVATE partner, FreeWave will offer an ecosystem of IoT data-driven network solutions – helping customers to connect, visualize and future-proof remote operations. As part of the program FreeWave will have new access to Viasat’s global L-band network to provide Internet of Things (IoT) and satellite connectivity services. This will enhance the company’s ability to deliver robust IoT solutions in challenging environments where demanding performance and exceptional support are crucial for its customers’ network productivity and revenue. FreeWave, headquartered in Boulder, Colorado, is a global IoT full-solution manufacturer specializing in edge computing devices and applications, providing data brokering, visualizations, and analytics through its FreeWave Insights™ Platform as a Service for remote networks. As part of the program, FreeWave will gain access to Viasat’s broader partner network, creating opportunities to collaborate on additional niche data-connected solutions for its customers. ELEVATE’s marketplace will help the company attract new customers in locations without reliable connectivity, or those which have mission-critical connectivity needs.  For customers, it gives access to a broad choice of satellite connectivity and IoT solutions developed by a range of providers to enhance the efficiency, safety, and sustainability of their businesses.  Simon Hawkins, Vice President, Enterprise Commercial & Innovation at Viasat said “ELEVATE is the go-to destination for satellite IoT innovation. It’s a one-stop-shop that helps our partners easily leverage the latest technology to meet some of the greatest challenges the planet faces today. By combining forces, we will accelerate the development of IoT solutions to meet our clients’ mission-critical requirements across diverse industries.” “Through partnerships with forward-thinking companies like FreeWave, they can rely on our highly reliable L-band network to deliver groundbreaking solutions at speed. That means more industries will be able to benefit from the wide-ranging benefits offered by industrial IoT.” Michael Tate, Chief Operating Officer and SVP Sales and Marketing, FreeWave, said “We are optimistic for the future opportunities that becoming an ELEVATE partner brings to our customers. Viasat’s cutting-edge satellite connectivity ensures our customers’ remote networks consistently deliver critical data, empowering them to make better-informed business decisions.” “This collaboration opens new avenues for us to innovate and further develop customer-centric solutions, expand our IoT footprint and benefit IoT solutions that span industries bringing customers data-driven decisions no matter where they are.” Viasat’s ELEVATE program is open to new entrants, disruptors and established brands of any size who have developed an innovative digital product or service and want to access the power of satellite enabled IoT solutions. Viasat provides dedicated technical guidance on how to integrate and support its highly reliable satellite services, go-to-market strategy planning and exposure to its distribution channel to enable access to new markets.  Providers working across a diverse range of industries, including, but not limited to, agriculture, aid and NGOs, energy, exploration and leisure, media, mining, transport and utilities, as well as agnostic technology providers, will be considered for membership. Organisations join the ELEVATE program here. About Viasat Viasat is a global communications company that believes everyone and everything in the world can be connected. With offices in 24 countries around the world, our mission shapes how consumers, businesses, governments and militaries around the world communicate and connect. Viasat is developing the ultimate global communications network to power high-quality, reliable, secure, affordable, fast connections to positively impact people’s lives anywhere they are—on the ground, in the air or at sea, while building a sustainable future in space. On May 31, 2023, Viasat completed its acquisition of Inmarsat, combining the teams, technologies and resources of the two companies to create a new global communications partner. Learn more at, the Viasat News Room or follow us on Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, X or YouTube. About FreeWave Technologies Based in Boulder, Colorado, for 30 years, FreeWave Technologies has connected the unconnected with a reliable ecosystem of edge intelligent radios and solutions – manufactured in the United States – to optimize the extreme edge of remote industrial operations. FreeWave has a legacy of solving thousands of customer challenges globally across multiple industries, FreeWave can help transform and future-proof an operation now. Visit to get started at:, or follow us on LinkedIn, Facebook, X, or YouTube Copyright © 2023 Viasat, Inc. All rights reserved. Viasat, the Viasat logo and the Viasat signal are registered trademarks in the U.S and in other countries to Viasat, Inc. All other product or company names mentioned are used for identification purposes only and may be trademarks of their respective owners. FreeWave Contact PR Contact – Sue Moore, +1303 381 9213, Viasat, Inc. Contacts PR Contact – Richard Jones, +44 7843 819611, Paul Froelich/Peter Lopez, Investor Relations, +1 (760) 476-2633,  

SCADA + Satellite Equals Industry’s Latest Power Couple

When it comes to remote industrial operations, there’s only one constant, and that is change. Change can occur in an instant — a burst pipe, an equipment malfunction, a flash flood. But, more often, change creeps up slowly and then suddenly looms large. Take, for example, the worsening labor shortage. Nowadays, if something does go wrong in the field, you might be hard-pressed to find someone to go out and fix it without leaving a gaping hole in another part of your operations. Changes give way to more changes, but they also give rise to certainties. For instance, industries with large-scale remote operations know that automating equipment and functions — and monitoring those automated systems from afar — is imperative in today’s world, where resources are short yet production demands are a tall order to fill. That’s one reason why the global industrial internet of things (IIoT) market size is projected to reach a staggering $1,683.30 trillion by 2030, up from last year’s value of $321.81 billion, according to a market analysis by Grand View Research. It’s also certain that, in some respects, the more things change, the more they stay the same. As digital transformation across various industries kicks into high gear, Supervisory Control and Data Acquisition (SCADA) — a decades-old but highly implemented technology heavily used by oil and gas, water treatment, energy and manufacturing — is adapting to meet the demands of the modern industry, proving it’s not going anywhere anytime soon. And that brings us to another certainty that still comes as a surprise to some SCADA users: Satellite connectivity has emerged as one of the fastest, most reliable, and most secure methods of transferring data from remote IIoT devices to existing SCADA systems. Today’s satellite systems are easy and inexpensive to deploy, and they make IIoT technology easier to scale. Space, it turns out, is the next new frontier for industrial leaders. During “McKinsey and the World Economic Forum 2023,” futurists predicted the space market to reach $1 trillion in the next decade with the number of satellites tripling during that time. While quick to acknowledge and adapt to changes that affect day-to-day operations and key performance indicators, SCADA users by and large have not been early adopters of  satellite technology over the past decade, in part because of its historic reputation of being pricey, having high latency, and providing limited bandwidth. The world of satellite has changed. And FreeWave is stepping up to play matchmaker. We’re building an evolutionary path toward an end-to-end solution (more on that in a bit). Reliable, consistent connectivity is key. FreeWave is  a Global Authorized Reseller of ORBCOMM and a Connectivity Wholesale Partner in Viasat’s ELEVATE program (Viasat, headquartered in Carlsbad, California, just completed its acquisition of London-based Inmarsat). It’s time, in the midst of the Fourth Industrial Revolution, for one of industry’s long-standing staples, SCADA, to join forces with modern industry’s rising star — satellite connectivity. Satellite Adoption’s Meteoric Rise How can companies be certain that satellite is the future-proof connectivity solution for remote operations? Follow the money. Satellite IIoT revenue is expected to surpass $130 million by 2032 in North America alone, according to Viasat. Globally, the compounded annual growth rate in that time span is estimated at 27 percent. By sector, the oil and gas (O&G) industry leads the pack, with satellite IIoT investment more than doubling over the next decade to about $115 million worldwide in 2032. Smart agriculture, transportation and mining also are pack leaders, with the utilities industry not far behind. Growth might accelerate even faster were it not for the persistence of outmoded notions about satellite communications. When they think of satellite, some corporate decision makers picture a dish as wide as an above-ground swimming pool that costs about $5,000 just to set up, plus $500 to $1,000 a month to operate. But that’s like judging a job candidate based on his 10-year-old paper résumé instead of his up-to-date LinkedIn profile. It’s true that satellite communications were relatively slow and clunky a decade ago, but satellites these days can be as small as a petri dish and cost as little as $500, with monthly service available for as low as $30. Companies with remote operations have relied mostly on cellular connectivity and other terrestrial solutions to transmit remote data to their SCADA networks. But as IIoT continues its push into underserved locations — from remote grazing pastures in Wyoming to rugged open-pit lithium mines in Western Australia — satellite offers distinct advantages. Going back to our earlier example of a burst pipe, equipment malfunction or unexpected weather crisis – that is all too common for remote industrial operators – satellite provides reliable and real-time connectivity. Here’s why this is important. In sparsely populated or harsh environments, cellular service might be limited, spotty, or altogether unavailable. In especially isolated areas, where a cell tower sighting is about as likely as a Yeti sighting (not the outdoor product goods, but the fabled ape-like creature), satellite connectivity may be the only viable solution for monitoring SCADA equipment. Where cellular coverage is available, sensor data travels wirelessly from tower to tower until it reaches the SCADA master station. Along the way, landscape features like mountains, buildings, and even clumps of trees can interfere with transmission. For this reason, satellite is a great “insurance policy” for remote connectivity that needs continuous uptime. By contrast, satellite communication does not depend on land-based transmission, so landscape features won’t block the signal. Data travels from sensors to a satellite in space and bounces back to the master station without interference except for extreme weather events that can sometimes cause a signal delay commonly called “rain fade.” FreeWave and its partners have an answer for that. With the acquisition of Inmarsat, Viasat’s fleet provides full global coverage via 19 satellites in space spanning the Ka-, S-, and L-bands. L-band signals can penetrate through rain, snow, and other inclement weather, so signal reduction is not an issue. L-band communication also offers

IIoT and Work-Life Balance: A Healthy and Productive Relationship

This article was authored by Kirk Byles, FreeWave CEO  The Industrial Internet of Things can improve productivity and promote a healthy work-life balance. Here’s how. “There is no such thing as work-life balance anymore. You’ve got to integrate them. Otherwise, you will fail miserably at one of them.” – Benjamin Laker, Forbes Because of COVID-19, the boundaries between our work and home lives continue to blur. I often find myself doing chores while on a conference call or listening to a webinar while cooking at my barbeque. And I’m becoming more interested in who is at the office, now that we’ve opened part-time (I use the key card application on my phone to monitor access). It’s not my intention to be Big Brother – working from the FreeWave office is voluntary. Rather, I want to gauge how folks are feeling. I took the same action to monitor my kid’s activities at home when I was still working from the office, to see whether or not they crank the heat or A/C when they get home from school. These are typical IoT-related activities we take for granted. Like most people, I’ve tried to strike the perfect balance between my life at work and my life at home. Since I’ve worked remotely for most of my professional life, I’m fairly disciplined when it comes to shutting off work at the appropriate time. Still, like so many people, I’ve recently found myself working extended hours. Experts criticize the concept of work-life balance because it suggests life and work are in opposition. And the pursuit of balance is exhausting. Some researchers suggest it’s better to embrace imbalance than strive to achieve a state of work-life nirvana. And I tend to agree with them. Of course, you have to schedule aspects of your work-from-home time, just like you’d plan family activities. Still, there’s nothing wrong with blocking out personal time during the day if you can spend a few hours hiking with your kids or friends during the afternoon. Even if you’ll be working at 10 PM as a result. This balancing act is new to quite a few folks, and it’s difficult. But, if you have the right solutions at your fingertips, it gives you peace of mind and helps you become more efficient. I mentioned mobile apps for my home and office, but what about tools for people working in industries that need to go beyond looking at cameras or names on a screen? Many people work in oilfields, on manufacturing floors, water sanitation sites, farms, or cities. And for most of their careers, they’ve been able to pull data from remote locations, view pressure gauges, monitor flow rates, check on pick and place machines for errors, and in some cases, manipulate those machines remotely (assuming they have the necessary skills). How does this work get done when you have to work from home? The right technology makes it possible. By placing edge computers with industrial applications where the action is happening, people can see the apps at work and relax, knowing they’ll be notified if there is a problem. This helps remote employees see what might be happening, and it also helps them know what is actually happening and how automatic changes improve systems. With edge computers, application-specific software, and communications technologies, folks working from home don’t have to stress about what’s happening on-site. And they don’t have to try to fix issues. The software corrects the issue before you know there’s a problem, so you can cook for the kids and rest easy knowing you’ve had zero downtime and machinery is running at absolute efficiency. The IIoT helps Mom, the field services director for a major utility, work from home, and be 10x more productive because of remote applications at the edge that make sure everything runs as it should. She can spend more time with the kids, and address aspects of her work she couldn’t get to before implementing this technology. It’s about creating efficiencies and solving problems before you even know there is one. An imbalance between work and home life is okay as long as you’re doing all you can to ensure work gets done and your home life isn’t neglected. The Industrial Internet of Things can make this possible for all of us.

FreeWave Announces the Release of their New Online Training Portal

Take your FreeWave experience to the next level with our new online learning center. FreeWave is primarily a supplier of hardware for the industrial space, which means that our products aren’t as simple to use as hardware designed for the consumer market. The specificity of FreeWave equipment makes training and certifications crucial. We’ve always offered training, but in the past, the sessions were conducted in-person. And while our team enjoys interacting with customers in a live setting, there are obvious drawbacks to on-site education. The value of hands-on training is undeniable, but it requires expensive travel, often for both the FreeWave team and our customers, and the system isn’t available on-demand, nor is it scalable. Understanding the importance of high-quality training, as well as the budgetary and scaling issues inherent to in-person instruction, we set out to create a different solution. Our team worked tirelessly to build the all-new FreeWave online training portal – a video-based learning platform designed specifically to train and certify FreeWave hardware customers. FreeWave’s team of tenured educators built the learning platform to address known customer challenges. We are one of the first in our hardware niche to provide a video-based online learning center. The training portal is a differentiator for us and you. What makes the FreeWave online training portal valuable? The FreeWave online training portal allows customers and partners to learn at their own pace. There are assessments after each chapter that allows users to test their knowledge. The learning center is specific enough to help customers and partners with their unique applications but broad enough to apply to every FreeWave customer regardless of industry (industry-neutral). The education center operates in real-time and will continue to evolve. Customers or partners will have up-to-date information about product releases, as well as notices and advisories specific to FreeWave hardware. The learning center is an excellent resource for notifications about products our customers might already use. Each course has a corresponding message board. Trainees can ask questions and receive follow-up responses from an instructor. The complimentary platform is immediately available to FreeWave customers. Public and private sector organizations with restrictive budgets aren’t always able to justify sending employees for training. Many learning courses with certifications cost up to $2,000 per ticket to attend, and the average group-size for in-person training ranges from 12 to 15 people. The ease of access and affordability of our new learning platform combined with on-demand features and real-time updates make it an invaluable resource. What are early adopters saying? “FreeWave did an excellent job on the videos, and I learned a lot! I especially like that the videos are broken into bite-sized chunks. I took notes throughout and nearly went through an entire pad of paper.” – FreeWave customer “I started the online course, and I love it!!!” – FreeWave customer  A mini-case study: A newly-onboarded customer conducted a successful field test and sold FreeWave hardware the day following his training and certification. A learning process that in the past would have required on-site training conducted by a FreeWave educator, and hands-on assistance in the field test and sales process, was achieved within 24hrs and at no cost to either the customer or FreeWave. It’s important to note that the customer attempted to use a competitor’s hardware last year for the same purpose and was unsuccessful. The online training portal is designed for both resellers and end-users of FreeWave hardware. Our initial launch includes one certification and roughly seven hours of educational video content to get you started. Additional certifications and training videos will be added throughout the year. Are you an existing customer or partner? Click here to register for the FreeWave online training portal! New to Freewave products? Contact Us.

9 Critical Reasons to add Wireless Thief Hatch Management

A thief hatch is a closeable lid at the top of a low-pressure holding tank for hydrocarbons such as oil or condensate, or water. It allows access for measurement, however, if left open it can allow hydrocarbon vapors to escape into the atmosphere as fugitive emissions. Hydrocarbon tanks are almost always Class 1 Div 1 hazardous locations. If your thief hatch pops open from overpressure conditions, or if an operator accidentally leaves it open, you could be in violation of strict air pollution compliance rules on fugitive emissions. The Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment (CDPHE) Regulation 7, Section XII, “Volatile Organic Compound Emissions from Oil and Gas Operations”, requires facilities to control venting of natural gas from many oil and gas emission sources. The CDPHE has determined that improperly secured thief hatches, visible emissions from a flare, and audible emissions from a thief hatch or pressure relief device (PRV) are violations of Regulation No. 7. Many of the 23 oil producing states (including Ohio, Utah, Wyoming) are looking at the CDPHE rulebook as a possible blueprint for their state rules. The minimum fine by CDPHE for an open thief hatch, visible emissions from a flare or audible emissions from a thief hatch or PRV is $15,000/day. The duration of each fugitive emission violation is assumed to be at least one day unless evidence gathered by the CDPHE and/or provided by the source proves otherwise. The USEPA’s new regulations affecting methane (CH4) and VOC emissions from the oil and gas sector became effective August 3, 2016. Updates to NSPS OOOO list storage thief hatches as one of the fugitive emission leak components that will be periodically checked for leaks using optical gas imaging (OGI). Thief hatches are usually easy to see and make easy pickings for regulatory compliance inspectors. Inspectors will often check thief hatches first, and use them as indicators of other violations for a site. Open thief hatch detection is a powerful tool to minimize fugitive emissions. Most solutions on the market to detect an open thief hatch are wired and expensive to install and integrate into an existing SCADA system. FreeWave delivers an inexpensive and easy to deploy Class 1 Div 1 wireless solution for Thief Hatch Monitoring with the WC30i-AXIS Angle Sensor. FreeWave’s new WC30i-AXIS Wireless Angle Sensor is a solid-state inclinometer that measures the opening angle of a Thief Hatch and reports as closed, cracked or open. It links wirelessly to the WC45i Gateway, which communicates to the PLC or SCADA system with Modbus communication protocol. Together with the WC45i Gateway, the WAVECONTACT system is easily and quickly deployed to implement industrial automation where wired installations are cost prohibitive. The WAVECONTACT System has been designed for deployment in Class 1 Div 1 locations. Contact Sales to Learn More

IT/OT Convergence – The Impact from the Industrial Internet of Things

Without question, the number of connected sensors and devices on your IIoT network are going to increase, and also without question, the volume of data created by these devices on your IIoT network are going to increase as well. Both increases are intended to improve operational efficiency and streamline business processes. As a result, your Information Technology (IT) and Operational Technology (OT) departments will likely need to adopt new strategies.  An increasingly popular strategy is IT/OT convergence. The Bandwidth Burden For many industries, SCADA and M2M networks have historically used serial communications for operational networks. This has changed and is changing for many. As networks transition from serial to Ethernet communications, data is now freed for routing to any business system. There is a new twist for SCADA, M2M and now IIoT networks that have limited bandwidth capabilities. With more business systems needing critical data to improve business process, utilization of bandwidth on networks with already-limited bandwidth is also increasing based on the traditional Poll/Response or Request/Response model. To reduce the bandwidth burden, systems are now transitioning from Poll/Response operation to a Publish/Subscribe model. There are several benefits to the Publish/Subscribe model. Sensors or devices in bandwidth limited networks can publish data when events change or select criteria are met. This reduces the demand for network bandwidth in two ways; 1) there is no prerequisite Poll message, and 2) devices publish when needed. Publish data is routed to a Broker or Publish/Subscribe server that operates on networks where network bandwidth is not a limitation so any number of subscribers can subscribe needed data without burdening the IIoT network. While the Publish/Subscribe model is a significant improvement to IIoT network efficiency, it is not a panacea for all operational information. Network monitoring systems, e.g. SNMP based systems, will still need to poll devices to gather operational, performance and prescriptive data; essential for proactively maintaining an efficient and operational IIoT network. Secure Devices to Support Convergence Newer sensors and devices are also being designed with security in mind because no legitimate manufacturer wants their IIoT device to be part of a DDoS attack, as we saw in 2016 with the Mirai DDoS attack. While IIoT device security services and features are rapidly improving, it is still incumbent on OT and IT organizations to: Train personnel on network security because the human element can still be the weakest part of any network, e.g. phishing emails, Deploy networks with Defense in Depth so there are numerous barriers to obstruct and deter entry with timely audit trails to identify entry, and Perform periodic Risk Assessments and implement action plans. SCADA, M2M and IIoT networks are operating more as IT networks thanks to the close work between OT and IT groups and their convergence. Want to learn more on this topic? Join my presentation at the ENTELEC conference on Thursday, April, 27, 2017 at 2 p.m.

Become a FreeWave Insider

Designed, manufactured and tested in the USA.

© 2024. FreeWave Technologies, Inc. All rights reserved.


5395 Pearl Parkway, Boulder, CO 80301



Designed, manufactured and tested in the USA.

© 2023 FreeWave Technologies, Inc. All rights reserved.