The DASH7 Alliance is the industry consortium responsible for overseeing the development of the ISO 18000-7 standard for wireless sensor networking, as well as interoperability certification of DASH7 devices and the licensing of DASH7 trademarks. The DASH7 Alliance is a privately held, 501(c)3 not-for-profit trade association founded in February 2009 and headquartered in San Ramon, California. Manufacturers may use the trademark to brand certified products that belong to a class of wireless sensor networking devices based on the ISO 18000-7 standard.
DASH7 wireless sensor networking technology is operating in the license-free 433.92 MHz spectrum. DASH7 has multi-kilometer range, multi-year battery life, sensor and security support, tag-to-tag communications, and a maximum bitrate of 200kbit/s. DASH7 devices operate on a single global frequency and are interoperable regardless of application and by design do not require cumbersome application profiles. DASH7 is the brand given to the ISO 18000-7 standard for active RFID similar to the use of the Wi-Fi brand for IEEE 802.11 communications.
Upon receiving awards for the U.S. Department of Defense’s RFID III contract for ISO 18000-7 devices, several companies – Savi Technology, Evigia Systems, and Identec Solutions – started a more formalized process for determining conformance with the ISO 18000-7 standard and interoperability across vendors. ISO has no provision for testing equipment for compliance with its standards.
A founders meeting was organized by Savi Technology in February 2009 in Kona, Hawaii, and around this time the moniker “DASH7” was used to substitute for the much longer and more obscure “ISO/IEC 18000-7:2004”. At this meeting, it was agreed the alliance should incorporate as an independent, non-profit trade association and collect member dues to fund its operations.
In July 2010, the alliance announced the latest step in its interoperability certification initiative, making a series of test methods and scripts available to DASH7 developers.
In July 2010, the alliance also announced that an update to the ISO 18000-7 standard had been submitted to ISO, dubbed DASH7 Mode 2, adding new features and capabilities to the technology.
The mission of the DASH7 Alliance has three basic components:
- Ensure interoperability across ISO 18000-7 devices
- Expand the feature set of the ISO 18000-7 to reflect new market requirements
- Evangelize DASH7 technology in new markets and geographies
The DASH7 Alliance consists of four main working groups overseen by a board of directors. There are a number of subgroups within the working groups.
The working groups are:
- Technical Working Group
- Receives end user requirements from the Outreach Working Group and begins to translate them into technical specifications for submittal to ISO. Within the TWG, there are also a number of subgroups including security and low frequency wakeup.
- Test and Certification Working Group
- Coordinates the Alliance's efforts around conformance and interoperability testing, as well as the actual granting of DASH7 Certified status to submitted products that pass the DASH7 Test and Certification process.
- Standards and Regulatory Working Group
- Coordinates the submittal of specifications to ISO and the subsequent voting by members in ISO. The SRWG also coordinates the Alliance's interactions with various regulatory bodies around the world and liaison relationships with other standards nd industry consortia.
- Outreach Working Group
- Gathers end user requirements for submittal to the outreach working group and also leads all public outreach for the Alliance. Within the OWG, there are also a number of subgroups including automotive, container sensing and security, building automation and smart energy, and government affairs.
The DASH7 Alliance manages test and certification program, required for any product using DASH7 wireless technology. The program was designed to ensure maximum commitment to open standards and ease of use. The program adheres to the ISO 18047 conformance standard and tests for both conformance to the ISO 18000-7 standard as well as for interoperability across DASH7 vendors. Successful test results are transmitted to the DASH7 Alliance by an accredited test lab and the DASH7 Alliance subsequently grants rights to usage of the DASH7 Certified logo. The DASH7 Alliance also owns and controls the DASH7 Certified logo, a registered trademark, which is permitted only on equipment which has passed testing.
New DASH7 specifications are considered the intellectual property of the DASH7 Alliance and remain accessible only to DASH7 Alliance members until they become public knowledge during the ISO standards process.
The DASH7 Alliance owns the DASH7 trademarks. The "DASH7 Certified" trademark is licensed out for use to companies that are incorporating DASH7 wireless technology into their certified products. A DASH7 Member trademark is also available to paying members of the alliance. To become a licensee of any DASH7 trademark, a company must become a member of the DASH7 Alliance.