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Low power GNSS receiver and more on show at embedded world

9th March 2017
Alice Matthews

A new WiFi module will be launched by u-blox at embedded world, held in Nuremberg, Germany, on 14th-16th March 2017. New demonstrations will include WiFi and Bluetooth low energy sensor connectivity to cloud applications, the C030 application board for rapid prototyping of cellular IoT applications, the super low power GNSS receiver for portable applications, and a gas flow meter sensor using NB-IoT technology. First to be featured is a new WiFi module demonstrating a low power sensor application. 

The demonstration gathers sensor data via WiFi and Bluetooth low energy, transmitting it via an ARM mbedTM OS 5 enabled IoT gateway (ODIN-W2) to a cloud application for visualisation and analysis.

Next is the u-blox C030 application board, an out-of-the-box rapid prototyping solution for IoT applications that can support new LPWA (Low Power Wide Area) cellular technologies, such as NB-IoT, and existing 2G/3G networks. The first variants feature the u-blox SARA-N211 module, as well as SARA-U201, which the company claims to be the world's smallest 2G and 3G world module. The application board integrates a GNSS receiver (the u-blox MAX-M8C module) and a user-programmable host CPU for quick prototyping in an ARM mbed OS 5 enabled software environment. Providing a low power design for applications that require long battery life in a compact form factor, the C030 also offers out-of-the-box international eUICC roaming and compatibility with u-blox stand-alone Bluetooth and WiFi modules (such as NINA-B1) and Arduino shields for sensor, actuator and battery solutions that can all be easily integrated within the ARM mbed enabled environment.

Also featured will be the new UBX-M8230-CT, a super low power GNSS receiver chip for wearable applications. The demo was recorded with a commercial product antenna and shows the path of a person running a course, using two identical designs configured one with the 1Hz full power mode and the other with the 1Hz new Super-E mode. The 2D accuracy and the power consumption of each configuration are then visually and quantitatively compared, thereby demonstrating the Super-E mode’s balance between power and performance in the use case of portable applications.

The NB-IoT Smart Metering demo brings together the u-blox SARA-N2 NB-IoT module, which the company claims to be the first NB-IoT module in the world, combined with sensor technology by Sensirion. It showcases a flow meter sensor in the real world application of a gas meter. The gas usage detected by the meter is relayed directly via the NB-IoT module to the utility, where it can be integrated with cloud based analytics platforms. The demo illustrates the business benefits and cost savings achieved by directly capturing meter usage information, as well as the capability to analyse such real data in real time.

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