Courtesy of Nordic Semiconductor : Bluetooth Low Energy air quality sensor system measures air pollution levels and environmental data
The ‘Hibou’ air quality sensor system employs Nordic Semiconductor’s nRF52832 SoC to deliver wireless connectivity and manage complex sensor algorithms
The Hibou unit includes a range of sensors measuring particulate matter (PM), gas (VOC), humidity, temperature, atmospheric pressure, as well as ambient and ultraviolet (UV) light, and is designed to provide users with rapid feedback on air quality and the potential presence of pollution in commercial, government, or consumer settings.
In operation, the 80 by 50 by 30mm wall-mounted device monitors indoor and partly-outdoor air quality as well as environmental conditions, and using Bluetooth LE wireless connectivity provided by the Nordic SoC, syncs the data to the user’s smartphone or tablet, where it can be reviewed via the company’s Android-compatible ‘Air Quality System’ app. Alternatively the data can be transferred to the administrator’s Cloud-based management system via Wi-Fi. From the management system dashboard the user can not only review the data, set alerts and automate reports, but also connect the system to third party AI and machine learning platforms.
The device is powered via a micro USB connector or external power bank, but is also available in a low power version without a PM sensor, that provides up to one month battery life between recharge, thanks in part to the ultra low power consumption of the Nordic SoC.
Nordic’s nRF52832 SoC is a powerful multiprotocol SoC ideally suited for Bluetooth LE and 2.4GHz ultra low-power wireless applications. The nRF52832 combines an 64MHz, 32-bit Arm Cortex M4F processor with a 2.4GHz multiprotocol radio (supporting Bluetooth 5, ANT™, and proprietary 2.4GHz RF software) featuring -96dB RX sensitivity, with 512kB Flash memory and 64kB RAM.
The SoC is supplied with Nordic’s S132 SoftDevice, a Bluetooth 5-certifed RF software protocol stack for building advanced Bluetooth LE applications. The S132 SoftDevice features Central, Peripheral, Broadcaster and Observer Bluetooth LE roles, supports up to twenty connections, and enables concurrent role operation.
“We have worked with Nordic Semiconductor for many years, but we are using the nRF52832 SoC in Hibou specifically because of the powerful Arm M4F processor,” says Axel Hammar, Smart Sensor Devices Founder and CEO. “Nordic’s Thingy:52 IoT Sensor Kit is also great, and is helping our organization to improve.”