Courtesy of Nordic Semiconductor : Multiprotocol dongle delivers powerful, long-range wireless connectivity solution for M2M Internet of Things product development
Raytac’s ‘MDBT50Q-RX’ dongle integrates Nordic’s nRF52840 SoC, eliminating the need for RF design expertise and speeding time to market for complex M2M IoT applications
Once programmed with the developer’s application software, the dongle provides designers of machine to machine (M2M) Internet of Things (IoT) applications with an FCC/IC/Telec/KC/SRRC/WPC pre-certified and CE/RCM compliant multiprotocol connectivity end-product solution, negating the need for RF design expertise and time-consuming development work. The compact 43.1 by 18 by 9.3mm dongle is designed for use in Industrial IoT (IIoT), smart-home and -city sensor mesh networks, as well as in personal area networks (PANs) for health and medical monitoring applications.
The dongle is powered by the nRF52840 SoC, which features a powerful 64MHz, 32-bit Arm® Cortex® M4F processor, 1MB Flash memory and 256kB RAM, and a 2.4GHz radio featuring -95dBm RX sensitivity in 1Mbps Bluetooth LE mode and -103dBM sensitivity in 125kbps Bluetooth LE mode (boosting range). These features make the SoC an ideal choice for applications that are complex, processor-intensive, and/or require long range. Raytac says the MDBT50Q-RX offers a working range of up to 250 meters in open space at a data rate of 1Mbps, or up to 120 meters at a data rate of 2Mbps. The dongle also provides GPIO, PWM, and USB interfaces for connecting peripherals and sensors.
Nordic’s nRF52840 multiprotocol SoC is Nordic’s most advanced ultra low power wireless solution. The SoC supports complex Bluetooth LE and other low-power wireless applications that were previously not possible with a single-chip solution. The nRF52840 is Bluetooth 5-, Thread 1.1-, and Zigbee PRO (R21) and Green Power proxy specification-certified and its Dynamic Multiprotocol feature uniquely supports concurrent wireless connectivity of the protocols. The SoC combines the Arm processor with a 2.4GHz multiprotocol radio. The chip supports all the features of Bluetooth 5 (including 4x the range or 2x the raw data bandwidth (2Mbps) compared with Bluetooth 4.2). Designed to address the inherent security challenges brought by the IoT, the nRF52840 SoC incorporates the Arm CryptoCell-310 cryptographic accelerator, offering best-in-class security.
The SoC is supplied with Nordic’s S140 SoftDevice, a Bluetooth 5-certified software protocol stack for building long range and high data Bluetooth LE applications. The S140 SoftDevice offers concurrent Central, Peripheral, Broadcaster, and Observer Bluetooth LE roles, and supports high throughput and long range modes as well as advertising extensions. OpenThread and Zigbee stacks are available through Nordic’s nRF5 Software Development Kit (SDK) for Thread and Zigbee.
“We selected the nRF52840 SoC for the MDBT50Q-RX dongle for its multiprotocol support and also Nordic’s nRF5 SDK for Mesh which together enable the widest possible application support for developers,” says Lyon Liu, Raytac Director. “On top of its powerful specifications, the addition of a USB interface provides developers with the most flexible and convenient interface for M2M IoT implementations.
“Nordic’s product roadmap is always one step ahead of the market. The company has foreseen the future of multiprotocol wireless applications and with the nRF52840 SoC has provided the best solution for IoT application development.”