MultiHop networks are made up of one master radio and many repeater and slave radios.
The MultiHop networks are self-forming and self-healing networks constructed around a parent-child communication relationship. A MultiHop Radio is either a master radio, a repeater radio, or a slave radio.
At the root of the wireless network is the master radio. All repeater or slave radios within range of the master radio connect as children of the master radio, which serves as their parent. After repeater radios synchronize to the master radio, additional radios within range of the repeater can join the network. The radios that synchronize to the repeater radio form the same parent/child relationship the repeater has with the master radio: the repeater is the parent and the new radios are children of the repeater. The network formation continues to build the hierarchical structure until all MultiHop radios connect to a parent radio. A MultiHop radio can only have one designated parent radio. If a radio loses synchronization to the wireless network it may reconnect to the network through a different parent radio.
For the simple example network shown, the following relationships exist:
MultiHop Master Radio. Within a network of MultiHop data radios, there is only one master radio. The master radio controls the overall timing of the network and is always the parent
device for other MultiHop radios. The host system connects to this master radio.
MultiHop Repeater Radio. When a MultiHop radio is set to repeater mode, it acts as both a parent and a child. The repeater receives data packets from its parent, then re-transmits the data packet to the children within the repeater’s network. The incoming packet of information is re-transmitted on both the radio link and the local serial link.
MultiHop Slave Radio. The slave radio is the end device of the MultiHop radio network. A radio in slave mode does not re-transmit the data packet on the radio link, only on the local serial (wired) bus.