Nordic-powered Bluetooth low energy development kit offers complete turnkey solution for rapid Internet of Things product development

Developed by Taiwanese MtM Technology Corporation, the MtM IoT Development Kit comes in a small form factor, is based on an nRF51822 SoC, and includes ready-to-go firmware and software

Nordic Semiconductor today announces that Taiwan-based MtM Technology Corporation has selected Nordic’s nRF51822 Bluetooth® low energy (previously known as Bluetooth Smart) System-on-Chip (SoC) for its Internet of Things (IoT) Development Kit.

The MtM IoT Development Kit (DK) consists of a set of modular and stackable connectivity, processing, sensor, and accessory boards, allowing the user to select the functionality they require for their application, stack the boards together, and develop their IoT product rapidly and economically with ready-to-go firmware, and software.

Central to the DK are the connectivity boards, MtConnect04 and MtConnect04S, hosting MtM’s nRF51822-based M904 and M904S Bluetooth low energy modules respectively, on which all the application logic is developed.

The MtM IoT DK is based on Nordic’s nRF51822 System-on-Chip (SoC) Bluetooth low energy solution, which is compliant with the latest Bluetooth 4.2 version of the specification. The nRF51822 SoC is a powerful and flexible multiprotocol single-chip solution built around a 32-bit ARM® Cortex® M0 CPU with 256kB/128kB flash and 32kB/16kB RAM. The nRF51822 supports over-the-air application software and Bluetooth low energy firmware upgrades.

The M904 is an Antenna-on-Package (AoP) module, while the M904S is intended for use with an external antenna, and is RF shielded. Thanks to MtM’s System-in-Package (SiP) technology, the modules come in a compact 6.5 by 6.5mm form factor, allowing for ‘close-to-product’ prototypes. Once the M904 or M904S module is programmed on the DK, it can act as a functional device. The modules are powered by a coin cell battery from MtM’s MtAid02 coin battery accessory board.

The DK is targeted at production level, space-constrained IoT projects, with the hardware components, firmware, and software all suitable and ready for production once the development is complete. Using the same components on MtM’s DK boards, developers only need to do a PCB re-layout to suit the requirements of their project before commencing the production phase.

MtM’s sensors are grouped into functionalities by board: MtSense01 is an environmental board; MtSense02 is a gas sensor board; MtSense03 is for motion detection and analysis; MtSense04 is for gesture sensing; MtSense05 has a UV sensor, and MtSense06 is for health applications. In addition, accessory boards are provided to assist with development and prototyping. MtAid01 and MtAid05 are extension boards, with all the pins of the module/DK wired out to connector pins for easy connection of external components. MtAid05 allows Arduino shields to be connected to the DK and programmed in the Nordic Software Development Kit (SDK) environment. The MtAid03 accessory board has a USB interface, while MtAid04 is an RGB LED board that can be used for applications such as smart lighting prototyping.

The MtM DK has already been employed in a range of applications and products including a smart bike based on the MtConnect04S. Embedded in the frame of the smart bike are the MtSense05 UV sensor for automatically turning on the bicycle lamp when it gets dark; an MtSense03 motion sensor for triggering an alarm when the bike is locked and then moved; an MtSense04 gesture sensor for signal light control; as well as a MtSense06 health sensor for measuring the rider’s heart rate and blood oxygen concentration.

“MtM’s core technology is SiP and with this we aim to provide the smallest solution in the world,” says Cedric Lam, MtM Technology Corporation, Chief Technology Officer. “When we were looking for a suitable Bluetooth low energy solution we found that the nRF51822 wafer-level chip-scale packages (WL-CSP) was the smallest package with such rich I/O support. Besides the compact dimensions of the package, we also found there was good SDK support with open source examples.”

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