Advice Request: In vehicle mobile gateway operating near international border

As a mostly retired paramedic, I do a bit of volunteer SAR/Training work near the US/Canadian border and need a data solution for my vehicle (think specialized RV) that covers the following:

Primary Goals

  • Parked with ability to physically ‘jack in’.
  • Parked / locally mobile with WiFi access via 2.4 GHz Ubiquity Nano (directional) or Rocket (Omni MIMO) (have both) - When available
  • Connection via US cellular network - When available
  • Connection via Canadian Cellular Network - When available
  • Failover between WiFi (effectively WAN), US Cellular, and Canadian Cellular

Secondary Goals

  • GPS logging and poling from remote location

  • Serial interface for basic vehicle diagnostics (battery voltage, temperature)

  • Notification via SMS of critical out of parameter criteria (low battery voltage, unauthorized access, etc.)

  • Ideally a (bidirectional) CAN bus interface.


  • While failover is a goal, teaming/bonding is not required.
  • Much of the system is already in, the central remaining item is the cellular gateway - currently looking at the PepWave BR1-ENT as a possible.
  • The network will be running off “12v” dc.

This is the current layout:

Thoughts and suggestions much appreciated!

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The provided design look good but before we can confirm which model is best for the solution, i need more info from you regarding to the requirements listed above.

  1. Possible to explain further how the Manual Selector device work ? How the WAN fail-over work between Wired, Nano and Rocket? Can we treat Manual Selector as 1 active Ethernet WAN for Pepwave MAX router and Fail-over between Wired, Nano and Rocket is handle by the Manual Selector device?

  2. Will you accept if the the Ethernet WAN & WIFI WAN is directly handle by the Pepwave router ? This will allow auto WAN fail-over that handle by Pepwave MAX Router.

That mean active WANs for Pepwave MAX Router:
1 x Ethernet WAN
1 x Cellular WAN (Redundant SIMs - SIM card for US & SIM card for Canada

Assume we follow back the original design given, BR1 ENT will have the below WANs connection:

1 x Ethernet WAN
1 x Cellular WAN (Redundant SIMs - SIM card for US & SIM card for Canada)

Seem only 1 active WAN require at any 1 time, thus we can have the following WAN priority:

Priority 1:
Ethernet WAN (Connected to “Manual Selector”)

Priority 2:
Cellular WAN (Redundant SIMs - SIM card for US & SIM card for Canada)

BR1 ENT only support single cellular modem and only can connect to 1 active SIM card at 1 time., thus the fail-over may cause some downtime for the network. Do you accept this ? Seem the deployment is in the border between US & Canada, may i know the cellular network between US & Canada did it overlapped ? If yes, will you consider for Pepwave Router with 2 cellular modem ? This will give you better cellular connections fail-over whereby both cellular WAN can get connected for US & Canada (Border)

You may consider Peplink InControl2 feet management solution. For more information, please refer to the URL below:

You may also consider GPS forwarding from the device to the remote locations.

Possible to provide further info for the serial interface for the vehicle ? Connection type or others ?
UART is supported for BR1 ENT (Terminal Block)

Normally, Pepwave router will act as UART medium to allow remote system to command the terminal device and Notification should send by the remote system. Can you further explain the requirement above ?

What do you mean for bidirectional CAN bus interface ? Can you further explain the requirement above ?

Thank You


The manual selector - as shown here - is a truly manual selector switch with multiple inputs and a single output allowing selection of the RJ45/Ethernet WAN source input to the BR1. After the WAN source is selected the source and the BR1 would do typical handshaking and IP address determination.

Both the Rocket and the Nano are WiFi gateways, thus there would be 2 x WiFi WAN.

That is exactly correct.

Yes, exactly correct.

While there is some overlap, the overlap is minimal for any given area. While dual radios would certainly be considered, they are likely not critical. A reasonable amount of failover lag (a couple minutes even) is generally acceptable.

Thank you for the option. In our application, the GPS data needs to be accessible via our dispatch center directly - thus the InControl2 would not work. I do appreciate the suggestion.

Is there documentation available on the full capabilities of the terminal block and associated UART?

CAN (Controller Area Network)-bus / J1939 is a vehicle bus standard that is equipped on most vehicles made after 1991 as a component of the OBD (on board diagnostic) system, using a differential pair of signals for communication. In application, it facilitates control and communication between everything from accelerator position to seat warmers. Bidirectional being an interface that can both read and write to the CAN bus. The CAN Bus is often also utilized for fleet management.

Thank you again for your reply. I’m happy to provide additional information as requested.

Can i consider only 1 active WAN will be selected for the manual selector at any 1 time ?

Do you require both WIFI WAN connected at the same time ? Any reason why two different type of antenna being used ? [2.4 GHz Ubiquity Nano (directional) or Rocket (Omni MIMO)]

Do the vehicle will stop at the overlap network area ? Do note that SIM card fail over (redundant SIM) will only happen if cellular totally lost signal (US Cellular <–> Canadian Cellular)

Can you further explain the expected method how the dispatch center need fetching the GPS locations ? GPS forwarding from the MAX device to the dispatch center will do ? For more information regarding to the GPS forwarding, please refer to the attached screenshot.

This is a new feature and for detail documentation, i may need to check on this. I will get back to you as soon as possible.

“Ideally a (bidirectional) CAN bus interface”, may i know what is the expected integration between the MAX device & the CAN bus interface ?

Thank You

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Yes, that is exactly correct.

The omni is used whenever possible, as it does not require aiming and can be used - to some degree - when mobile. We use the directional for longer distances when stationary. – only one is in use at any time.

Understood, that should be fine. Please confirm, may the active SIM also be user selected via the MAX GUI?

Thank you, that would work.

Thank you, that may be critical for us.

Please note that this is not critical, but would be very helpful. Ideally the MAX would be able to read various vehicle conditions (such as vehicle speed, rpm. fuel level, etc.) and send custom codes to provide special functionality (unlock doors, etc.) This is not my primary area of knowledge.

Thank you for the information shared so far. Basically this help us to understand the actual requirement & the WAN fail-over tolerance that acceptable for the deployment.
Initially, by looking at the initial design given, we are thinking whether or not to consider different MAX Router model to achieve the fully automated WAN fail-over design. This include the WIFI WAN, Ethernet WAN, Redundant Cellular WAN.

Seem some manual work (Fail over between Ethernet WAN and WIFI WAN) is tolerance for the solution , so you should have no issue for the BR1 ENT.

Overall WAN fail over design:

Priority 1:
Ethernet WAN (Connected to “Manual Selector”)

Priority 2:
Cellular WAN (Redundant SIMs - SIM card for US & SIM card for Canada)

For the SIM card selection, user are allow to select the active SIM or preferred SIM.

Regarding to the details info UART function, i will get back to you as soon as possible.

Below are the WebUI configuration for UART

Thank You


We are looking for an option to connect car computer with Peplink and then via LTE to serve other applications.

About UART, what standards does it support? Does it support all of stanrdards in OBD 2?


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The MAX router UART interface support RS-232 Serial communication protocol, where it could be deployed for OOBM purpose.

Some relevant articles about the MAX router Serial interface.