Silicon Labs announced its family of EZR32 MCUs that combine EZRadio and EZRadioPRO sub-GHz wireless connectivity with our proven energy-friendly EFM32 32-bit MCUs. When you create a device that opens up the runway for the development of IoT devices, you need to start considering a range of issues effecting the success of your design projects. You can get the full white paper right now, and a small taste of what you can learn below.
IoT Sensor Node Requirements
The network topology of IoT systems is comprised of simple nodes that collect and transmit a limited amount of data to a central controller or gateway which provides connectivity to the Internet and cloud services. Nodes and gateways must be designed to minimize power consumption, provide reliable and robust network connections and extend wireless connectivity range as far as possible.
Typical Wireless Metering Architecture
At the heart of IoT systems is a processor unit or microcontroller (MCU) that processes data and runs software stacks interfaced to a wireless device for connectivity. Requirements for both the MCU and wireless device are specific to the end application and system requirements. Advanced IoT sensor nodes consolidate sensor functions and use either an 8-bit MCU or a 32-bit device to run a small radio frequency (RF) protocol stack. These devices are typically battery powered and connect to gateways where heavier processing and data transmission occurs.
Sensor Nodes typically transfer small amounts of data and often have to operate on batteries for several years. The devices must also be portable, reliably connected and able to operate under varied environmental conditions regardless of RF interference or physical barriers. Because these devices are part of networks, the setup of networks, aggregation of sensor data and display of information must also be considered. The combined selection of the appropriate MCU and wireless or RF connectivity for these devices as well as development tools and software stacks for application development are critical to their successful design.
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