Tag Archives: IoT Design

Mobility tech “growing pains”

 

A look at the future vehicle through the eyes of SAE International

This article is the third of a six-article series from SAE International providing a practical look into the feasibility of connected vehicles and autonomous driving. Read the first and second articles.

Like countless other technological advancements, the vehicle of the future holds great promise for the world in which we live. The use of autonomous and connected technologies are predicted to revolutionize mobility by reducing vehicle crashes, decreasing energy consumption, lowering pollution, and curbing costs associated with traffic and parking congestion. It also will provide direct personal benefit through increased independence for people with limited driving abilities.

There has been a fundamental change ramping up in the automotive world, which has led to increased collaboration with outside partners in the information technology, electronics, and infrastructure industries. There’s also an issue of speed. Technology companies operate on “clock time” versus iterative design and are, at this point, speeding ahead of the original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) in terms of development and innovation. Simply put, OEMs and tier one suppliers need tech more advanced than they can develop on their own – and they need it quickly.

Introducing new technologies into the automotive ecosystem is a complicated task. With the overriding importance of the safety of occupants and pedestrians on the line, these technologies must be heavily tested, vetted by automakers, and approved by government agencies before being put into widespread use.

While much advancement has been made in the development of advanced driver assist systems (ADAS) in the last decade, the question of whether technology is advanced enough to completely take over the task of driving still lingers. After all, we haven’t heard of these vehicles coming equipped with “Ctrl+Alt+Del” capabilities in the event of a malfunction.

Several SAE International committee members have hit the brakes on rushing autonomous and connected vehicles into production, citing a need for standardized development and verification processes for new, unproven technologies. Steve Shladover, Research Engineer at the University of California, Berkeley and SAE J3016TM task force member, says, “The single most important factor in developing highly automated vehicles is safety. The human is actually a remarkably safe vehicle operator and until an automated driving system can be demonstrated to be at least as safe as the human driver, that system does not belong on public roads without close human supervision.”

Essentially, technology being developed for the future vehicle must be immune to cyberattacks and hacking, be interoperable between vehicles and surrounding infrastructure such as traffic lights, be able to instantaneously communicate with other vehicles, and immediately detect and assess hazards in the roadway. In effect, the technology must be more human than humans. With this growing checklist of deliverables, the technology being developed must be vetted, even if it means slowing the introduction for widespread use.

While automakers and suppliers have their own internal protocols for benchmarking product performance in real-world scenarios, it is important to develop, implement and abide by industry-wide standards to ensure an equally safe automotive market. These technologies must be proven before hitting the road. To do this, SAE has led the way in developing best practices for the industry to abide by.

“There are a variety of advantages to developing an industry consensus when approaching the development of autonomous and connected vehicles,” says Mark Zachos, President of DG Technologies and a member of SAE’s Technical Standards Board. “With standards, we bridge technology between manufacturers and suppliers. Instead of needing to develop proprietary solutions, the vendor community has a guidebook to help it provide quick technology iterations.”

With all that is at stake, SAE believes in starting with the basics. We’ve developed universal terms and definitions for the industry to use when discussing specific technologies and their capabilities. For example, how automated is a vehicle? How much human interaction is required for operation?

The SAE J3016TM standard recognizes that all autonomous and connected vehicles are not created equal. From 0-5, they’ve created a scale that groups automated vehicles by their level of ability, with level “0” as no autonomous ability to level “5” that signifies full automation. Since introduction, these levels have become the framework of how automakers internally classify their technologies. Recently, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) took this a step further by adopting the levels as official guidance for how the U.S. will identify automated driving systems.

The issue right now is that consumers are not being equally educated on the levels of automation. These levels are essential to aiding consumer understanding of what autonomous and connected vehicle technologies are currently available and how they differ from what has yet to be created. When automakers talk about introducing an “autonomous vehicle” by 2020, what does that really mean? Calling it a year of widespread Level 3 deployment is more concise and realistic.

While tech providers and automakers have demonstrated that Level 4 and Level 5 automated driving is possible, a huge roadblock looming in the future is data management. For a vehicle to completely eliminate human intervention, it has to take on a role our human minds take for granted – processing variables and making decisions. It also has the added challenge of self-protecting against cyberattacks.

“Highly automated and fully automated vehicles have tough jobs. They must instantaneously monitor the driving environment, watch for obstacles, test driving surface conditions, and adjust for weather, all while communicating with the roadway infrastructure and vehicles around them,” says Jack Pokrzywa, SAE International’s Manager of Ground Vehicle Standards. “If there’s an obstacle in the road, the vehicle needs to determine if it’s harmless, such as a plastic bag, or an imminent threat, like a large rock. There are also situations where the decision is not so clear, such as a cardboard box that may or may not contain damaging contents.”

The technology industry has yet to commercially debut software and hardware capable of automatically handling these tasks. According to NHTSA, today’s vehicles use a combination of 100 microprocessors, 50 electronic control units (ECUs), five miles of wiring, and 50-100 million lines of code (MLOC). As features for advanced automated driving are added to a vehicle, that list will continue to grow. To handle this explosion of electrical components, engineers at tech providers are stepping in to expedite the advancement of sensor and processing technology to curb inappropriate vehicle responses. SAE is advocating for advanced data logging to be built into software code so the data itself can provide insight to its shortcomings when it is undergoing testing.

As for the systems to support autonomous and connected vehicles, there is an equal amount of progress needed before Level 4 and above vehicles hit the roads. For the last 15 years, SAE has been working to develop a way forward for cooperative intelligent transportation systems, including vehicle-to-vehicle (V2V), vehicle-to-infrastructure (V2I), and vehicle-to-everything (V2X). The difficulty with these systems is developing a universal language for all the carmakers to agree upon, avoiding redundant systems and engineering to accept numerous technologies.

SAE is taking the lead in developing a basic framework for this infrastructure, known as Dedicated Short-Range Communication (DSRC), by establishing a basic message set, performance requirements, safety awareness requirements, and recommended system engineering methods.

While progress has been made in identifying best practices for developing these communication infrastructures, the technology is expensive and has yet to be vetted for security in a real-world environment.

According to Valerie Shuman, principal at SCG, LLC and member of SAE’s DSRC technical committee, “The challenge we’re facing is that vehicles, traffic signals, and other roadway devices will be interconnected, making them vulnerable to cyberattacks. We must have appropriate technologies and business models in place to handle these threats.”

Automakers and technology providers are working through “growing pains” as each side adapts to the needs of the other, finding a happy medium. Before we see vehicles that are truly automated, the last frontier of development requires innovative solutions for testing and verifying the technology that powers them. Because of this, we will see contributors to the development process collaborate more often, creating a hybrid system of innovation that provides technologies that are safe and reliable. SAE will be part of this process every step of the way, facilitating partnerships and upholding best practices for technology development and implementation. The car of the future offers great promise, but first it has to be proven safe and secure. In the meantime, deadlines can wait.

Shawn Andreassi is Manager of Corporate Communications at SAE International.

SAE International, a global association of more than 128,000 engineers and related technical experts, has published more than 1,600 technical standards and recommended practices for passenger cars. The organization, founded in 1905, leads the industry with advanced, unbiased knowledge to benefit society.

Society of Automotive Engineers (SAE) International

www.sae.org

 

via IOT Design

CEL Launches New High Power CG2409 RF Switch Family for Wireless Applications


New affordable pHEMT RF Switches provide increased data throughput, improved coverage range, and better signal quality

New affordable pHEMT RF Switches provide increased data throughput, improved coverage range, and better signal quality

CEL Launches New High Power CG2409 RF Switch Family for Wireless Applications

New affordable pHEMT RF Switches provide increased data throughput, improved coverage range, and better signal quality

April 19, 2017 – SANTA CLARA, CA

CEL (www.cel.com) today announced the availability of CEL CG2409 family of high power RF switches.

RF switches are microwave devices that route high frequency signals through transmission paths and can be used for diverse range of applications including WLAN, Mobile Communications, Wireless Security, Wireless Home Automation, Digital TV and many other RF products. The CG2409 is available in two packages X3 and M2. The CG2409X3 and CG2409M2 are manufactured using state of the art pHEMT technology and are packaged and tested in Japan to guarantee high quality and reliability.

These RF switch components can be used within an application to switch between Transmit / Receive modes, as Diversity Switches, switching between two different antennas, and also switching between RF Frequency Bands.

The CG2409X3 is a wideband, high-power single-pole, double-throw (SPDT) GaAs MMIC RF switch, specified for the frequency range of 0.05 to 6GHz, and can operate at a control voltage from 1.8V to 5V. The P0.1dB compression point of the switch is 37.5dBm at 3V. The second and third harmonic specs are -80dBc and -85dBc respectively at input power of 26dBm. The insertion loss ranges from 0.3dB to 0.6dB while the isolation ranges from 32dB to 28dB over the frequency range. The device is in a compact 6-pin XSON package (1.5mmx1.5mmx0.37mm).

The CG2409M2 is also a high-power single-pole, double-throw (SPDT) GaAs MMIC RF switch but is specified for the frequency range of 0.05 to 3.8 GHz and operates at a control voltage from 1.8V to 5V. The P0.1dB compression point of the switch is 36.5dBm. The second and third harmonic specs are -80dBc and -85dBc respectively at input power of 26dBm. The insertion loss ranges from 0.35dB to 0.6dB while the isolation ranges from 35dB to 21dB over the frequency range. This device is in a small 6-pin surface mount package (2.0mmx1.25mmx0.9mm).

Why use a High Power SPDT RF Switch?

There are two trends that dominate recent Wi-Fi systems development. One is the increase of RF transmission power for improved coverage range and better signal quality, and the other is the increasing use complex modulation schemes to boost the data throughput.

Both trends put more stringent requirements on power handling capability as well as linearity of the RF components used in the transmission path in order to meet regulatory and signal integrity specifications. As a result, these RF switches at the antenna ports are now one of the most critical components. While more integrated front-end-modules (FEM) are finding increasing usage, particularly for space constrained applications, discrete MMIC switches still offer the most flexibility in terms of system configuration and performance selection.

These new CEL Switches are drop-in compatible to at least one RF Switch model from Renesas (Renesas switches also offered through CEL). CEL’s RF Switches have lower prices than their equivalent drop-in Renesas RF Switches. Data sheets for these RF Switches are available on www.cel.com/ . Also check out CEL’s RF Switch IC Section Guide – http://ift.tt/2pAnVuV

About CEL

CEL offers a broad selection of wireless and networking components including RF/microwave transistors and ICs, optical-coupler ICs, laser diodes, photo diodes and high-speed interface ICs. CEL also designs and produces Cortet™ and MeshConnect® wireless solutions and platforms for IoT applications.

CEL is the exclusive gateway into the Americas for RF and Optical Semiconductors from Renesas Electronics (formerly NEC Electronics). We also build on our more than fifty years of wireless excellence to offer our own wireless components and solutions in addition to those from Renesas. Our team of highly skilled Applications Engineers supports diverse designs using components from all product lines.

CEL has technical centers in Santa Clara, California (Silicon Valley), Buffalo Grove, Illinois (Chicago area) and Lafayette, Colorado (Boulder/Denver area). CEL supports customers through direct sales offices, sales representatives and distributors worldwide, with offices in Hong Kong and Tokyo that support the Asia Pacific region.

via IOT Design

Sierra Monitor Corporation Launches Cloud-Connected Network Discovery and Management Appliance for Facility Automation


Complementing the BACnet Explorer NG’s network discovery capabilities are value-enhancing applications that run locally on the appliance.

Complementing the BACnet Explorer NG’s network discovery capabilities are value-enhancing applications that run locally on the appliance.


The BACnet Explorer NG is the industry’s first cloud-connected network discovery and management solution for BACnet networks.

The BACnet Explorer NG is the industry’s first cloud-connected network discovery and management solution for BACnet networks.

Sierra Monitor Corporation Launches Cloud-Connected Network Discovery and Management Appliance for Facility Automation

MILPITAS, Calif., April 18, 2017 — Sierra Monitor Corporation (OTCQB:SRMC), a provider of Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) solutions that target facility automation and facility safety requirements, today announced the availability of the BACnet Explorer NG, the industry’s first cloud-connected network discovery and management solution for BACnet networks. BACnet is an industry-standard protocol that is widely used in building and facility automation. The combination of the “plug-and-play” BACnet Explorer NG appliance and Sierra Monitor’s FieldPoP™ device cloud enables installers and system integrators to seamlessly and remotely discover and manage BACnet MS/TP and BACnet/IP devices on an automation network, test newly installed devices, debug the network, upload device and network information to the cloud, integrate device and network data with sophisticated cloud-based software applications, and provide a control path back to the network and devices.

“BACnet is the most widely deployed and fastest growing automation and control protocol used in commercial facilities and industrial plants,” said David Nardone, Membership Manager at BACnet International, an industry association that facilitates the successful use of the BACnet protocol in building automation and control systems through interoperability testing, educational programs and promotional activities. “A new approach to exploring and integrating BACnet networks is a great advantage to system integrators, installers, and maintenance teams and can make their job more convenient and efficient.”

Traditionally, exploring a BACnet network is achieved through software that must be installed on a Windows PC connected to the automation network through additional hardware. A single installer sits at the PC and runs the application to discover and view the network. Unlike such first-generation, tethered, PC-era solutions, Sierra Monitor’s BACnet Explorer NG is a portable, pre-packaged software plus hardware appliance that can easily plug into a BACnet MS/TP or BACnet/IP automation network and concurrently into the IT network and cloud over Ethernet, WiFi, or cellular connectivity that is included with the appliance.

The BACnet Explorer NG can be accessed simultaneously by multiple authorized users locally or remotely using their tablets and smartphones to not only discover and view devices, but to also securely write to those devices.

Complementing the BACnet Explorer NG’s network discovery capabilities are value-enhancing applications that run locally on the appliance. The Monitor View application allows users to monitor their entire connected network in real-time and visually track devices and data points of interest. The Historian application gives users the ability to log, store, and graphically display selected device data points over customized time intervals.

When connected to Sierra Monitor’s FieldPoP device cloud portal over the facility’s WAN or through the dedicated cellular link included in the BACnet Explorer NG, the capabilities of the on-site BACnet Explorer NG appliance can be securely and remotely accessed through the cloud by authorized users and applications. Authorized remote users can securely connect and use all the appliance-resident features for monitoring and troubleshooting. Responsible personnel can be set up to receive alerts based on defined triggering conditions in the field. Finally, solution providers can use the BACnet Explorer NG and FieldPoP REST APIs to integrate a facility’s BACnet devices into their specific solutions for energy management, maintenance management, etc.

“We have been using the BACnet Explorer NG to help us troubleshoot and fine-tune our BACnet systems and we have been very impressed,” said Matt Michniewicz, Service Manager at Halton Global Services. “The ability to manage our BACnet network anywhere – ranging from an on-site PC, the smartphone we all own, and remotely through the cloud – and adding more logic to the Explorer itself with value-added applications makes the BACnet Explorer NG a must-own tool for any system integrator and installer.”

“The BACnet Explorer NG enables integrators, facility managers, and the OEMs’ installation channels to conveniently commission new devices into existing BACnet networks.” said Varun Nagaraj, President and CEO of Sierra Monitor. “Progressive solution providers can also leverage the BACnet Explorer NG and FieldPoP device cloud to provide a range of new services to their clients such as continuous facility monitoring and maintenance-as-a-service.”

The BACnet Explorer NG is available for sale immediately from Sierra Monitor Corporation and its authorized partners.

To learn more about the BACnet Explorer NG, please visit http://ift.tt/2pAfkbw[…].

About Sierra Monitor Corporation

Sierra Monitor Corporation addresses the industrial and commercial facilities management market with Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) solutions that target facility automation and facility safety requirements.

The company’s FieldServer brand of protocol gateways and FieldPoP™ device cloud target the facility automation segment and are used by OEMs and system integrators to enable local and remote monitoring and control. With more than 200,000 products, supporting over 140 protocols, installed in commercial and industrial facilities, FieldServer is the industry’s leading multi-protocol gateway.

Sierra Monitor’s Sentry IT fire and gas detection solutions address the facilities safety segment, and are used by safety managers to protect facility personnel and assets. Sentry IT branded controllers, sensor modules, and software are installed at thousands of facilities such as natural gas vehicle fueling and maintenance stations, wastewater treatment plants, oil and gas refineries and pipelines, parking garages, and underground telephone vaults.

Headquartered in the heart of Silicon Valley in Milpitas, California, Sierra Monitor was founded in 1979 and has been a public company since 1989. By combining its distinguished track record in industrial sensing and automation with IoT technologies such as wireless, cloud connectivity, and data services, Sierra Monitor is at the forefront of the emerging IIoT trend.

For more information visit: http://ift.tt/1HHxK7P

Source: Sierra Monitor Corporation

via IOT Design

Portwell Announces Highly Composable IoT Gateway and Extremely Flexible Wireless Sensor Node Series


Portwell XM-1 modularized IoT gateway featuring highly composable structure

Portwell XM-1 modularized IoT gateway featuring highly composable structure


Portwell DS-1/DS-1B wireless sensor node series featuring wide variety of options for sensors and wireless connectivity

Portwell DS-1/DS-1B wireless sensor node series featuring wide variety of options for sensors and wireless connectivity

FREMONT, CALIF. —April 18, 2017—American Portwell Technology, Inc. (www.portwell.com), a wholly owned subsidiary of Portwell, Inc., a world-leading technology innovator in the Industrial PC (IPC) and embedded computing markets and an Associate member of the Intel® Internet of Things (IoT) Solutions Alliance, empowering the Internet of Things (IoT) with intelligent gateways and edge devices, announces the Portwell XM-1, the first IoT gateway to feature international patents of highly composable structure. XM-1 satisfies customers’ requests for an IoT gateway solution that can meet the requirements emerging from an extensive range of IoT applications.

System Characteristics of XM-1 Modularized IoT Gateway

– Modularization mechanism with patents

– All the communication modules can be hot-plugged on-site without removing the system chassis

– Supports four different communication technologies: ZigBee, LoRa, Wi-Fi, 2G/3G/LTE (optional)

– Two board choices: ARM processor-based (more power saving) and X86 processor-based (high computing power)

– Integration of conventional communications: RS232/422/485 (optional)

– 4-port Ethernet Switch (optional)

For applications into “diverse” communication interfaces

Due to local/specific infrastructural challenges — such as transmission distance, geological obstacles, limitation of regulation and/or power consumption — a system integrator involved in a wide variety of IoT projects might need to deploy a gateway solution, ideally, designed with various communication interfaces to ensure that data can be collected effectively under the same IoT structure. With the modularized design of XM-1, the same system integrator can select and “insert” the communication module/s based on “actual” application needs and requirements instead of preparing several different hardware gateways. For example, intelligent agriculture can utilize LoRa long range, low power wireless technology for collecting data, plus LTE (Long-Term Evolution) high-speed wireless communication to connect to the cloud. In other cases, the system integrator might be required to choose to adopt Wi-Fi instead of LTE, and accordingly the LTE module could be exchanged with a Wi-Fi module swiftly and easily. Portwell’s agile XM-1 modularized IoT gateway not only helps save costs, but also provides remarkable flexibility for unlimited IoT deployments within an evolving IoT world.

Enhanced efficiency for facility maintenance and upgrade

When a communication or connectivity system encounters technical issues, or requires an upgrade, engineers no longer need to open the system/gateway chassis. With its hot-plugging capability, XM-1 facilitates easier maintenance and upgrade. This modular design can dramatically decease the training time for technicians and help the enterprises lower costs and enhance efficiency

Portwell also announces a series of wireless sensor nodes, DS-1 and DS-1B, supporting Arduino IDE (Integrated Development Environment) and a wide variety of options for sensors and wireless connectivity.

System Characteristics of DS-1/DS-1B Wireless Sensor Nodes

– Supports ZigBee, LoRa and Wi-Fi for connecting the IoT gateway

– Supports sensors with different voltages at the same time

– Transfers sensors data with digital, analog, I²C and more

– Integrates lithium battery and solar charging, making DS-1B free from space and/or environment limitations

– Supports popular Arduino development environment

– Sleep mode and extreme power saving feature

Connecting numerous sensors under limited space condition

The DS-1 series integrates numerous sensors with the electronic and mechanical characteristics, dramatically decreasing circuit and mechanical complexity. The DS-1 series is a highly flexible sensor node solution that makes construction easier, faster and simpler.

Can be applied in almost any IoT application imaginable

1. Smart Home

Adopting the Wi-Fi communication module and integrating sensors of smoke, CO (carbon monoxide), gas, temperature, humidity and PIR (passive infrared) motion, the DS-1 sensor node series enables an intelligent system to rapidly understand the home environment and provide a more comfortable and safer living experience.

2. Intelligent Agriculture

With LoRa long range, low power wireless technology and sensors of soil humidity, CO2 (carbon dioxide) and UV, the DS-1 sensor node series enables an intelligent system to collect useful and valuable data to empower smart farming, such as analyzing the best cultivation plan for the highest yields.

3. Intelligent Factory

Adopting the Wi-Fi or ZigBee communication module and integrating sensors of flame, combustible gas, alcohol, harmful gas and vibration, the DS-1 sensor node series helps place factory operation under smart control by providing an intelligent system that detects if any of these factors might be at a level that risks interrupting the factory’s operation.

# # #

Product details:

XM-1 Modularized IoT Gateway: http://ift.tt/2pB5yTv

DS-1/DS-1B Wireless Sensor Node Series: http://ift.tt/2pAtDgf

# # #

About American Portwell Technology

American Portwell Technology, Inc., is a world-leading innovator in the embedded computing market and an Associate member of the Intel® Internet of Things Solutions Alliance. American Portwell Technology designs, manufactures and markets a complete range of PICMG computer boards, embedded computer boards and systems, rackmount systems and network communication appliances for both OEMs and ODMs. American Portwell is an ISO 9001, ISO 13485, ISO 14001 and TL 9000 certified company. The company is located in Fremont, California. For more information about American Portwell’s extensive turnkey solutions and private-label branding service, call 1-877-APT-8899, email info@portwell.com or visit us at www.portwell.com.

All products and company names referred to herein may be trademarks or registered trademarks of their respective companies or mark holders.

# # #

Media Contact:

Susan Wei

Marketing Manager

American Portwell Technology, Inc.

510-403-3354

susanw@portwell.com

via IOT Design

WISER Systems Partners with Decawave to Provide IoT Tracking Solution


U.S.-based WISER Systems, Inc. delivers indoor real-time tracking data in three-dimensions.

U.S.-based WISER Systems, Inc. delivers indoor real-time tracking data in three-dimensions.



Dublin, Ireland and Raleigh, NC, April 11, 2017 — Decawave, a world leader in ultra wideband (UWB) technologies, today announced a strategic partnership with WISER Systems, Inc., in Raleigh, North Carolina. Since announcing its Partnership Program in 2015, Decawave has partnered with 13 companies throughout the US, China, Europe and South Korea.

WISER’s autonomous Redundant Radio Localization and Tracking (RRLT) technology leverages Decawave’s expertise in location precision. This partnership pairs WISER’s award-winning Locator technology and Decawave’s revolutionary integrated circuit.

“This partnership is a big win-win,” said WISER’s CEO, Elaine C. Rideout, Ph.D. “WISER and Decawave together produce an extraordinarily powerful, versatile, and reliable plug-and-play positioning solution.”

Decawave launched its Partnership Program early in 2015 to help cultivate a network of experts in location technologies, shortening the time to market and lowering costs through strategic connections with their partners. The company’s access to cutting-edge technologies in various fields helps both Decawave and its partners design and implement innovative and efficient solutions at competitive prices. Its partnership with WISER will benefit both companies as the analytic-rich Internet of Things (IoT) moves from cutting edge to implementable solutions.

WISER’s award-winning technology has earned accolades from North Carolina State University’s Daughtery Endowment and the US Department of Agriculture’s Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) awards program (Phase I and Phase II). Decawave has been honored with numerous awards in technology and innovation, including the Frost & Sullivan 2015 Global In-Door Positioning Systems Customer Value Leadership Award and the 2014 European RTLS IC New Product Innovation Leadership Award.

WISER Systems, Inc. delivers inexpensive, real time location of critical assets accurate within one-meter within a defined perimeter – indoors or out. WISER’s RRLT™ tracking solution provides autonomous, real time granular location and “on-the-move” tracking that can be monitored through a web-based interface on any computer or mobile device.

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Mouser Signs Global Distribution Agreement with MEMSIC


        The MEMSIC product line enables mobility and the Internet of Things (IOT) by combining all the essential elements for engineers’ application needs, including solutions for drones, mobile, wearable, industrial, medical and smart parking applications.

The MEMSIC product line enables mobility and the Internet of Things (IOT) by combining all the essential elements for engineers’ application needs, including solutions for drones, mobile, wearable, industrial, medical and smart parking applications.


The MEMSIC product line at Mouser Electronics features a variety of sensor products, including magnetic and e-compass products, accelerometers, 6-degree-of-freedom (DOF) and 9-DOF inertial measurement units (IMUs) and orientation sensors, and gas flow modules.

The MEMSIC product line at Mouser Electronics features a variety of sensor products, including magnetic and e-compass products, accelerometers, 6-degree-of-freedom (DOF) and 9-DOF inertial measurement units (IMUs) and orientation sensors, and gas flow modules.

Mouser Signs Global Distribution Agreement with MEMSIC

April 17, 2017 – Mouser Electronics, Inc. announces a global distribution agreement with MEMSIC Inc. MEMSIC is a world leader for the consumer electronics, communications, automotive, medical and industrial sensing sectors. Through the new agreement, Mouser will distribute MEMSIC micro-electromechanical systems (MEMS) sensors to customers worldwide.

The MEMSIC product line enables mobility and the Internet of Things (IOT) by combining all the essential elements for engineers’ application needs, including solutions for drones, mobile, wearable, industrial, medical and smart parking applications. The MEMSIC product line at Mouser Electronics features a variety of sensor products, including magnetic and e-compass products, accelerometers, 6-degree-of-freedom (DOF) and 9-DOF inertial measurement units (IMUs) and orientation sensors, and gas flow modules.

The MEMSIC MMC5883MA Anisotropic Magneto Resistive (AMR)-based three-axis magnetic sensor provides the industry’s highest accuracy, lowest noise, and lowest power consumption. The sensor provides 16-bit operation over a wide ± 8 Gauss operating range, and features linearity of ± 0.2 percent full scale range (FSR), hysteresis of 0.2 percent FSR, and repeatability of 0.2 percent FSR on each of its three axes. It exhibits extremely low current consumption of only 20µA at a data rate of seven samples per second and extremely low noise level of only 0.4 mGauss total RMS noise. Combining this performance in an industry-standard small LGA package the sensor addresses the ever-increasing demands of industrial and drone applications.

The ultra-low-cost MXC6255XC/U DTOS accelerometers are two-axis motion and orientation sensors, based on MEMSICs proven MEMS thermal technology. The DTOS accelerometers allow designers to integrate key user interfaces, such as programmable “shake to change” menu navigation, TV/music channel selection, and vertical/horizontal picture orientation. The devices can also provide some basic game play control, fall-over detection in irons and other appliances, and other applications in mobile devices, toys, and consumer electronics.

The MFC2000 bi-directional digital MEMS gas flow sensors are more durable and provide high levels of measurement repeatability when compared to existing diaphragm or turbine-based gas flow meters. The silicon-based devices offer great power consumption characteristics, such as sleep-mode currents as low as 1 µA and typical operating currents of 3 mA. Other benefits include low 2.7 V–5.5 V supply operation, wide dynamic range with 3-percent or better accuracy, and the ability to provide the necessary performance over a 100:1 flow range. The architecture of the mass flow sensor modules is highly customizable for different flow rates and form factors optimized to application requirements. The gas flow sensors reduce the need for specialized machines in care centers, and enable gas flow-related medical equipment to be economically introduced into the home medical market.

For more information about MEMSIC and its products available from Mouser, visit http://ift.tt/2ptSU8K.

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Bluetooth audio streaming is everywhere and improving

Audio devices using Bluetooth (BT) connectivity are becoming more ubiquitous than ever. Apple, among others, have eliminated the standard 3.5mm audio jack from their designs, inducing more consumers to switch to wireless BT headphones. From portable speakers and car infotainment systems to earphones and hearing aids, the Advanced Audio Distribution Profile (A2DP) is by far the most common protocol for wireless audio streaming. As part of the Bluetooth classic protocol, A2DP is designed to unidirectionally transfer an audio stream in up to two-channel stereo from one device to another. While the pervasiveness of A2DP attests to its success, new and innovative products are pushing beyond its limits in attempts to enhance user experience.

For example, the profile doesn’t handle true wireless stereo (TWS), meaning two non-wired devices serving as left and right speakers (like AirPods). A2DP sends the stream to one device, which then splits the channels to two speakers that are connected by a wire. Conversely, TWS requires two separate devices to receive the audio stream and emit each channel in perfect synchronization (otherwise the sound will be unbearable). This is an especially challenging problem when the two speakers are inside someone’s left and right ears, as the human head is a difficult barrier for BT’s 2.4-GHz waves. Various hearables, like the AirPods and Samsung Gear’s IconX, have proprietary solutions to this problem, but there’s no standard.


Apple’s AirPods stream true wireless stereo (TWS), although the standard Bluetooth audio profile doesn’t support it.

The next challenge is supporting more than just left and right speakers. As everything is becoming wireless, so are home cinema speakers of the 5.1 and 7.1 variety, and other immersive sound systems. This requires streaming of more than the two channels that A2DP supports.

Power consumption is another limitation of A2DP that many are trying to overcome. For hearing aids, battery life is one of the most important considerations. That’s what brought Oticon to design its Opn hearing aid with Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) to save power. As opposed to BT Classic, BLE is designed for minimal power consumption, as it’s designated for Internet of Things (IoT) use cases. But, currently, BLE doesn’t include an audio profile. With a solution based on CEVA’s RivieraWaves BLE platform for minimal power consumption, the Opn can connect directly to external Bluetooth-enabled devices, like smartphones and TVs. Once connected, the user can stream calls, music and other audio content directly to the hearing aid.


Shown is the Oticon Opn hearing aid.

Enhancements in Bluetooth 5, which was recently released by the Bluetooth Special Interest Group (SIG), have increased the speed of BLE to up to 2 Mbits/s, so BLE already has part of the foundation for high-quality audio streaming. Work on this next-generation low-power audio speci is ongoing and will no doubt appear in a future release, along with a new profile. This profile will be suited for hearables and other tiny devices with limited battery size, as it could reduce the power consumption by up to 10X.

The new profile will come with new codecs and processing requirements. Handling this will require a flexible, programmable signal processing solution to allow modifications and upgrades. In addition to the codecs for streaming, devices like hearables often have multiple sensors. For example, motion, light, temperature, and heart-rate sensors are common for fitness tracking hearables. A lightweight digital signal processor (DSP), like the CEVA-X1, could handle the entire load, including the codecs and the sensor fusion, and hardly add any power consumption to the system.

While we wait for the finalization of a standardized protocol for audio over BLE, not all of the details are out in the open. In the interim, many are finding their own private solutions. In the end though, a SIG-approved standard solution will kick-start a new wave of lower power, high quality Bluetooth audio products, many of which will be integrated with multiple sensor inputs. Designers will continue to be under pressure to differentiate and execute even more aggressive product cycles.

Franz Dugand is a director in CEVA’s Connectivity Business Unit, where he’s responsible for expanding the CEVA Bluetooth and Wi-Fi product lines into various market segments.

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Franz.Dugand@ceva-dsp.com

@CEVA_IP

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via IOT Design