Title: Webinar: Designing Secure Bluetooth 5.2 IoT Products with BG22
Date: March 25 & 26, 2020
Duration: 1 hour
Speaker: Mikko Savolainen, Sr. Marketing Manager, Silicon Labs
According to the Bluetooth SIG, total annual Bluetooth device shipments are forecast to grow 26 percent by 2023 (from 4 billion units in 2019 to 5.4 billion units), and 90 percent of all Bluetooth devices will include Bluetooth Low Energy by 2023.
Secure connectivity and extremely low power consumption will be fundamental requirements for these IoT Bluetooth devices. EFR32BG22 (BG22) is an ideally suited solution that addresses these key requirements providing designers with secure Bluetooth 5.2 solutions that can operate on a single coin cell battery for up to 10 years.
In this webinar Mikko Savolainen, Senior Marketing Manager, explores the Bluetooth LE device opportunity and ultra low power Bluetooth product design with the BG22 and how it delivers the right combination of security, wireless performance, energy efficiency, and software features to meet the market demand for high-volume, battery-powered IoT products.
Join our webinar and get your questions answered during our Live Q&A session at the end.
This week the ioXt Alliance announced the appointment of Gregory Guez, senior director of product marketing and IoT security at Silicon Labs, to its board of directors. Silicon Labs is pleased to join the ioXt Alliance board and support their critical work towards creating the internet of secure things. With the exponential growth of the IoT industry comes an increased risk of security threats, and we are strongly committed to working with the alliance to set global standards that bring security, upgradability and transparency to the market and directly into the hands of consumers.
The alliance features a “ioXt Security Pledge” with eight principles for consumer product design and manufacturing. While there are other global security initiatives available, Gregory said, “ioXt stands above the crowd because of its focus on the consumer--with the ultimate goal of making it easy for everyone to recognize the level of security attached to an IoT product.”We look forward to working with Amazon, Google, Comcast, Legrand, Resideo, T-Mobile, Zigbee Alliance and other ioXt Alliance members on defining the highest level of security for IoT applications and elevating confidence among consumers acquiring IoT products. We encourage other IoT companies to join the movement and help make the connected world more secure. For more information, visit ioxtalliance.org.
This morning at CES 2020, we introduced a new ultra-low-power Bluetooth 5.2 SoC and announced a new partnership with Quuppa on indoor asset tracking solutions. These two announcements underscore our technology leadership and innovation in Bluetooth connectivity for smart home and retail/commercial/industrial markets.
Our new EFR32BG22 solution delivers best-in-class security features, wireless performance, energy efficiency and software tools and stacks to meet market demand for high-volume, battery-powered IoT products. The Bluetooth 5.2 SoC enables 10 years of operation on a coin cell battery and its Angle of Arrival (AoA) and Angle of Departure (AoD) capabilities and sub-one-meter location accuracy make it ideal for asset tracking tags, beacons and indoor navigation. For more information, see our press release.
Quuppa, the world leader in advanced location systems, collaborated with Silicon Labs on a direction finding solution that targets a wide range of indoor positioning, navigation and asset and people tracking applications for industrial IoT, logistics, security, personal medical devices, smart buildings and retail use cases. The combination of Quuppa’s infrastructure and our silicon, software and tools for asset tag design provides IoT developers with a comprehensive solution that reduces the cost and complexity of developing location positioning applications. For more information, see our announcement.
We were the first-to-market with Bluetooth mesh and Bluetooth 5.1 direction finding, and as demonstrated by these two announcements, we continue to lead the industry with new innovations. Our latest Bluetooth solutions give developers the right balance of features, security and performance at low cost points to drive adoption of Bluetooth across a wide array of IoT products.
The future of the IoT is open, seamless and secure.
We welcome the launch of the Connected Home over IP project and strongly support the working group dedicated to developing and promoting a new, open-source wireless protocol designed to increase compatibility among smart home products, with IP connectivity and IoT security being foundational design elements.
We are committed to advancing open wireless technologies and platforms for the IoT. We look forward to working with the Zigbee Alliance and fellow board members including IKEA, Legrand, NXP, Resideo, Samsung SmartThings, Schneider Electric, Signify (Philips Hue), Somfy and Wulian to drive the success of the Connected Home over IP project.
As a Zigbee Alliance board member, we will contribute to the project to create a new IP-based protocol enabling secure, reliable and seamless smart home connectivity. We encourage everyone in the smart home industry to get behind this much-needed project aimed to simplify development for IoT device manufacturers and increase ecosystem compatibility for consumers everywhere.
Today Silicon Labs and Z-Wave Alliance announced plans to open the Z-Wave protocol, making it available to all silicon and stack suppliers. This change allows semiconductor and software developers to join the Z-Wave ecosystem, contribute to advancements of the Z-Wave standard and develop and supply sub-GHz Z-Wave radio devices and software stacks.
Releasing access to Z-Wave furthers our commitment to IoT standardization by expanding the smart home ecosystem and giving multiple vendors access to broader technology support and accelerated market adoption. Z-Wave has the most mature and pervasive smart home ecosystem in the market, with more than 100 million interoperable devices deployed, more than 3,200 certified products and over 700 member companies.
The Z-Wave Alliance will become a standards development organization for the Z-Wave Specification and will continue to manage the Z-Wave Certification program.
We will continue to invest in Z-Wave technology and contribute to its growth. The Z-Wave Specification is expected to be available in the second half of 2020. For more information, see our press release and website.
IoT product developers are under constant pressure to reduce time to market. Being first to market with a new connected product can provide first-mover advantages, but developers should not compromise on key aspects to achieve that goal. That’s a big part of why we launched xGM210x Series 2 pre-certified modules. Developers can accelerate time to market by several months when they take advantage of highly integrated modules that come complete with global regulatory certifications and important, brand protecting features such as device security.
Simplifying IoT Development
Series 2 Modules enable faster and easier IoT development for smart building, industrial IoT, and smart lighting applications. Designed to optimize the performance of resource-constrained IoT products without requiring functionality tradeoffs, the Series 2 portfolio decreases the time, cost, and risk factors through the availability of a suite of development tools including the Simplicity Studio design environment, software stacks that have a proven track record in large deployments, support personnel, and security capabilities integrated into the modules.
Securing IoT Wireless Devices
The enhanced security features, implemented in the Series 2 modules, enable developers to use modern and highly robust security features in their IoT products.
Taking Advantage of the xGM210P
xGM210P is a broad-based module optimized for line powered IoT applications in smart home, building automation, and industrial IoT. With a long RF range, dedicated security core, and large flash memory, the broad-based module is perfect for smart HVAC, building, and factory automation systems.
When integrating the xGM210P, the high temperature rating of up to 125°C allows the module to function in demanding environmental conditions such as solar baking in utility meter applications. The module’s low profile also makes it perfect for space-constrained IoT designs particularly in smart home applications including smart light bulbs, fixtures, LED strips, dimmers, fire alarms, and power sockets.
Optimizing Smart Lighting with xGM210L
The xGM210L is designed and built for smart LED bulbs and allows developers to add wireless connectivity to LED light bulbs in an easier fashion. One key optimization is the inclusion of a 6-pin header, which enables horizontal and vertical mounting, an interface for power, and pulse width modulation (PWM) for LED temperature and dimming control. The 125°C high temperature rating ensures correct operation despite the harsh operating conditions and compliance with California Title 20 ensures low power reduces wasted power. Developers can design dimmable, color tunable smart LED lightbulbs that support Bluetooth mesh, Thread, Zigbee or multiprotocol connectivity. Extensive global regulatory certifications make developing with the xGM210L cost-efficient through saving development cycles. By enabling smart lighting with robust, scalable mesh networking, consumers can control lights through a smartphone and adjust lighting settings while away from their home.To learn more about how our new Series 2 Modules can reduce development cost and accelerate time-to-market for your IoT designs, visit our Series 2 Module page.
Despite the obvious convenience and efficiency benefits of smart home technologies, home automation gifting for non-savvy technology buyers has sometimes been challenging. The smart home products of yesterday were often too complicated to install for gift recipients or required professional installation. Do-It-Yourselfers (DIY) with technical backgrounds might appreciate receiving a smart home gift, but the average consumer may be overwhelmed by the prospect of installing a smart home product, not to mention figuring out how to connect it with other existing devices within the home.
Fortunately, times are changing – fast. Smart home ecosystem companies have significantly stepped up collaboration in recent years with two primary goals in mind: 1) simplify the products; and 2) make it easier for devices to all work with each other. Anyone familiar with the smart home market knows technology ecosystem players have been diligently working for years to improve product interoperability. But finally, after more than a decade of figuring out the plumbing, smart home companies are now spending more resources on improving the product user and installation experience.
Shop In-Store, Not Online
The best way to see this for yourself is to walk into a retail store such as a Best Buy, IKEA or Walmart. This year brick and mortar retailers have realized the consumer appeal of seeing the home automation products up close and in-person; therefore, in-store demos have increased dramatically. In fact, brick and mortar retailers are starting to see an uptick in smart home sales purchases in-store versus online because of the value of hands-on product displays, such as the Nest thermostat.
Another emerging shopping venue this year is smart home house parties. Similar in theme to Tupperware parties of the past, the idea behind these events is to get more people exposed to seeing how the products work inside a person’s real home. Granted, we may be running out of time to receive smart home house party invitations before the holidays, but this is a new way to buy products and something to consider for the future.
2.4 GHz vs. sub-GHz Considerations
Although it’s not visible to homeowners, many homes have a good amount of data traffic running across Bluetooth and Wi-Fi radio frequency bands, through music speakers, office computers, video games or Netflix movies. All of this data traffic uses the 2.4 GHz band, meaning traffic congestion or interference occurs regularly, sometimes resulting in sluggish performance, product or Internet latency or inoperable devices. However, vendors are working hard to ensure all of these 2.4 GHz devices, whether they use Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, Zigbee or Thread, can coexist with the other. So, while there is lots going on behind the scenes with 2.4 GHz technologies, for users, it just works.
That being said, when you set out to purchase smart home products, if your household typically has a good deal of Internet traffic on a regular basis, it may be worthwhile to look for products that run on sub-GHz. Years ago, the sub-GHz frequency band was more crowded in the home, due to cordless phones and other wireless devices that used this band. However, with migration to 2.4 GHz and even higher frequencies, sub-GHz has become a quieter radio spectrum in the home and offers easier transmission and fewer retries for data and devices running across it. Fewer transmissions made over a radio frequency results in less power used, ultimately saving battery power for smart home devices. Another potential benefit of sub-GHz is it offers longer wireless range across the house. As radio waves pass through walls, fences, closets, etc., the signal weakens (as we have all experienced with Wi-Fi). Higher frequency bands weaken more quickly when transmissions run into obstacles, meaning the 2.4GHz signal, a higher frequency band than sub-GHz, loses its strength faster due to physical barriers, though it often overcomes this issue by transmitting at a higher output power.
Wizard of Oz Integration
As complicated as that all may sound, the takeaway for a smart home shopper is sub-GHz smart home products are more reliable, robust and energy efficient, if you have a good amount of traffic occurring in your household. The Ring Protect System, built on Silicon Labs’ Z-Wave technology, is a good example of a smart home product that has leveraged the performance benefits of sub-GHz. It has also become so easy to use that no technical skills are required. All you need to do is take it out of the box and plug it in.
The collaboration within the industry among smart home vendors, manufacturers, cloud companies and hardware and software companies is now starting to pay off. Some may consider the new user-friendly products magic when they experience their ease of use, but the real genius lies in the relentless and complex work of technological integration across the entire smart home ecosystem of companies. In fact, most users don’t care whether it is sub-GHz technologies, like Z-Wave, or 2.4 GHz technologies, such as Bluetooth Low Energy or Zigbee. What they are really looking for is that it “works with Alexa” or “works with the Google Assistant.” That phrase is one of the keys to ensuring products work with each other and are easier to use than ever before, meaning even the most technically challenged family member this year is a candidate for a smart home gift.
Anyone who has had training or experience in high frequency electronics is familiar with the concepts of parasitic capacitance and inductance. These are the unintended “hidden schematic” components that you get when assembling physically realizable circuits. Modeling these elements explicitly may be necessary depending on the application and desired accuracy.
It turns out that an independent oscillator can couple energy in to a Phase-Locked Loop’s (PLL’s) VCO so as to influence or even take over the PLL’s output frequency and phase. This is the case of the parasitic PLL. It is a special case of injection as described below.
In this post, I will review the basic theory and modeling for this phenomenon. My interest is not in walking through the derivations but rather noting the highlights of the results. This basic bench-level knowledge of injection is useful when designing or applying oscillators and PLLs. Cited references are listed at the end for further study. In the next post I will discuss how to measure injection sensitivity and provide for its mitigation.
Injection locking can actually be useful in certain specific applications such as injection-locked frequency dividers. See Razavi (2004) for example. However, there are several reasons why unintentional injection in PLL frequency synthesis is undesirable:
Unless otherwise noted, this post assumes that the applications of interest involve PLLs which rely on LC resonant tank oscillators. Such circuits are in common use and subject to power supply coupling and external interference. Their Q or quality factor is high enough to yield reasonably good phase noise performance but low enough that injection can be an issue. The emphasis will be on a board level perspective though the same general principles may be applied at lower integration levels.
Injection pulling or locking refers to when one independent oscillator disturbs or locks the frequency and phase of another independent near-synchronous oscillator. Using crosstalk terminology, the victim oscillator’s frequency is pulled by the aggressor or interferer’s frequency. In the extreme, one oscillator is pulled all the way to lock at another oscillator’s frequency.
It is well known that oscillators in close proximity tend to lock to each other. The figure below gives the basic idea. Mechanical injection locking was first observed in pendulum clocks by Dutch scientist Christiaan Huygens in the 17th century. For a modern revisit of this work, see this online paper from Georgia Tech: http://schatzlab.gatech.edu/Library/Bennett2002.pdf.
This is commonly demonstrated in educational settings using metronomes on shared rolling or fixed platforms. See for example http://salt.uaa.alaska.edu/physics_public/metro.html. I have done this myself and it’s a neat demonstration.
Analogous behavior can happen in electronics when working with tuned oscillator circuits. Two classic papers on this subject are Adler (1946) and Kurokawa (1973).
In this context, the term independent oscillator can refer to either asynchronous clocks that are very close (or harmonically close) in frequency or to synchronous clocks that are out of phase.
Further, the notion of independence can be extended to synchronous clocks with different phase noise characteristics. The most important example of the latter case is a PLL’s input and output clock domains. Consider a noisy input clock provided to a narrow bandwidth “clean-up” PLL that yields the same frequency output clock. The jitter attenuated output is synchronous to the input clock but independent from a phase noise point of view.
Basic Injection Theory
My favorite practical treatment on this topic is in Wolaver (1991) and I lean heavily on his work in what follows. Consider the following figures adapted from his book. I use “INJ” subscripts for injection quantities and “T” subscripts for tank quantities for clarity.
In these figures, the following terms apply:
For sustained oscillation the tank circuit must yield a compensating phase shift -Phi1 from VT to V’T and Phi1 = Phi2. The phase of the transfer function VT/ V’T is plotted in the bottom figure. The bottom line is that an injected voltage will result in a phase shift in the oscillator loop.
Oscillator Injection Lock Range
By assuming that VINJ << VT, Wolaver derived an injection constant or gain where injection acts like a 1st order PLL. Below is a version of Wolaver’s derivation for KINJ with one term re-cast as the square root of a power ratio.
In this figure, the following terms apply:
The derivation suggests several important take-aways, all called out in the figure.
The model below is adapted from Wolaver’s simplest small signal model for a PLL with injection. This version breaks out the injection constant contributions where the angle α represents the phase difference between the injected signal and the input signal.
There are two important features to note in this model.
This last item is most important. Wolaver suggests K > 4 * KINJ. All else being equal, relatively NB (narrow bandwidth) PLLs are more susceptible.
Looking ahead to Part 2, the relationship between the nominal (uninjected) and injected PLL BWs will prove useful both in terms of troubleshooting and mitigation. You may recall a previous blog post Timing 101: The Case of the PLL’s VCO High Pass Transfer Function. It pointed out that a relatively wide bandwidth PLL can be used to attenuate VCO intrinsic phase noise. Likewise, a wide bandwidth PLL is also useful to suppress external influences on the VCO such as injection pulling or locking.
Some of the material covered here was presented at the Austin Conference on Integrated Systems and Circuits (ACISC) in 2009. If you are interested, you can email me to request a copy of the paper “Practical Issues Measuring and Minimizing Injection Pulling in Board-level Oscillator and PLL Applications” and accompanying slides.
As mentioned previously, the best practical overall book treatment I am familiar with is in Wolaver’s text:
This is a slim volume for a PLL book but it punches well above its weight in terms of information.
Here are several foundational papers worth reading on the topic of injection.
If you have favorite references you would like to share, please pass them along to me.
I hope you have enjoyed this Timing 201 article. Next time, I will follow-up on measuring and minimizing injection sensitivity.
As always, if you have topic suggestions, or there are questions you would like answered, appropriate for this blog, please send them to email@example.com with the words Timing 201 in the subject line. I will give them consideration and see if I can fit them in. Thanks for reading. Keep calm and clock on.
Today, we’ve announced the purchase of the IEEE 1588 precision time protocol (PTP) software and module assets from Qulsar. This addition to Silicon Labs’ IEEE 1588 portfolio uniquely positions us to simplify development and adoption of IEEE 1588 synchronization in 5G wireless, transport and access networks and accelerates time to market.
For years, Silicon Labs has been a leading provider of timing solutions for infrastructure applications with a broad portfolio of crystal oscillators, and voltage-controlled crystal oscillators (XO/VCXOs), clock generators, clock buffers, jitter attenuators and network synchronizers.
Expanding our portfolio to include IEEE 1588 software and modules extends Silicon Labs to a broader range of customers with a growing need for precise time synchronization, such as small cells, optical transport, smart grid and automotive. Silicon Labs can address cost-sensitive PTP software-only applications such as small cells with a standards-compliant turnkey solution. The 1588 modules make it easy to add IEEE 1588 to a design by tightly integrating PTP software and physical layer hardware in a plug-and-play solution.
The purchase includes all Qulsar modules (PTP master, gateway, boundary clocks and slave clocks) as well as IEEE 1588 servo and stack software, development tools and board support packages (BSPs) for a wide range of applications spanning small cells, optical transport, smart grid, automotive and 5G wireless infrastructure.
Automotive manufacturers across the globe are announcing aggressive plans to launch new models of battery electric vehicles (BEVs), plug-in hybrid electric vehicles (PHEVs) and full-hybrid electric vehicles (FHEV). As automotive designs move to electrification, high-wattage power electronics become critical components in the drivetrain and battery systems. These high-wattage electronics need to be communicated with and controlled by low-voltage digital controllers requiring electrical isolation of the low-voltage side from the high-power system. In these applications, galvanic isolation is required to allow the digital controllers to safely interface with the high-voltage systems of a modern EV.
Electric Vehicle System Overview
EV/HEV battery management systems typically include four major circuit assemblies:
Battery Management System Overview
The BMS manages stored power in a non-board high voltage (HV) battery and delivers power to the rest of the vehicle. The main functions include cell balancing, cell health and wear leveling, charge and discharge monitoring, and safety assurance. These functions require galvanic isolation to separate lower voltage systems from high voltage domain in the following ways:
DC-DC Converter Overview
DC-DC converters are used to convert DC voltages from one voltage domain to another for powering various auxiliary systems. Isolation products have numerous uses inside DC-DC converters in the electrical domains of EV or HEV. These functions require galvanic isolation to separate control systems from high-voltage domains in the following areas:
On-Board Chargers Overview
The OBC converts AC power from an external charging source into a DC voltage that is used to charge the battery pack in the vehicle. In addition, the OBC performs other functions including charge rate monitoring and protection.
In the OBC system, isolated gate drivers are used to chop the input signal into a switched square wave to drive a transformer to create the required output DC voltage. This output voltage can be monitored to provide closed-loop feedback to the system controller using isolated analogy sensors. Furthermore, the entire system can be monitored and controlled via an isolated CAN bus with digital isolators with and without integrated DC/DC power converters.
Traction Inverter Overview:
Traction inverters are used to convert stored DC high voltage from a battery or DC bus link into multi-phase AC power for driving a traction motor. Isolation products have numerous uses inside traction inverters in the drive train of EV or HEV through the following:
Silicon Labs Solutions:
The race to electrify automotive fleets is accelerating with more vehicles arriving from more manufacturers every year. Semiconductor-based isolation offers significant advantages over legacy optocoupler solutions, which make them an ideal choice in demanding EV applications.
Silicon Labs offers a broad portfolio with a rich variety of digital isolators, isolated gate drivers, and current sensors. With robust qualification, support, and excellent technical performance, learn more about how you can fit Silicon Labs’ product offerings in your design solutions in this Quick Reference Guide.