STMicroelectronics Introduces STM32WB – A SoC With 32bit Microcontroller And Bluetooth Low Energy 5

The new STM32WB from STMicroelectronics is a new wireless supporting System on a chip (SoC) that comes with a fully-featured ARM Cortex-M4 (@ 64 MHz) based microcontroller to run the main computing processes. It also has an ARM Cortex-M0+ core (@ 32 MHz) to offload the main processor and offer real-time operation on the Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) 5 and IEEE 802.15.4 radio. The SoC can also run other wireless protocols as OpenThread, ZigBee® or other proprietary protocols. It opens many more options for connecting devices to the Internet of Things (IoT).

STM32WB High-performance SoC specifications
STM32WB High-performance SoC specifications

The Cortex-M4 combined with a Cortex-M0+ for network processing makes sure the STM32WB to be the latest ultra-low-power microcontroller to combine superior RF performance with longer battery life. The SoC also combines essential circuitry for connecting to the antenna. It also packs right amount user and system memory, hardware encryption, and customer-key storage for brand and IP protection.

These days, only a few manufacturers offer similar dual-processor wireless chips capable of managing the user application and the radio separately for maximum performance. Alternative chips typically utilize entry-level ARM Cortex-M industry-standard cores, which introduce technical limitations and very low amount of onboard flash memory.

The robust and low-power 2.4GHz radio consumes only 5.5mA in transmit mode of this new STM32WB and as little as 3.8mA when receiving. This device also include STM32 digital and analog peripherals that are engineered for low power consumption and complex functionalities, including timers, ultra-low-power comparators, 12/16-bit SAR ADC, a capacitive touch controller, LCD controller, and industry-standard connectivity including crystal-less USB 2.0 FS, I2C, SPI, SAI audio interface, and a Quad-SPI supporting execution in place.

STM32WB devices will be available in an array of 48-pin UQFN, 68-pin VQFN, or 100-pin WLCSP with up to 72 general-purpose I/Os (GPIO). Each can be specified with any of three memory configurations, giving a choice of 256KB Flash and 128KB RAM, 512KB-Flash/256KB-RAM, or 1MB-Flash/256KB-RAM.

More information is available at the official website.

SODAQ Cellular IoT Development Kit Supports LTE-M, NB-IoT, GNSS and Arduino

SODAQ wants to provide you with the tools to build for the estimated 25 billion Internet of Things by 2020 using their set of Cellular IoT suite called SODAQ SARA Family.


Several industriy analysts have claimed that we will have 100 billion IoT devices connected and in circulation by 2050, with the majority of them running on the cellular network mostly due to its large-scale access and ease of deployment. We have already seen IoT deployments on 2G networks but the recent movement of Telecom operators into 4G networks and outfacing their 2G networks are paving ways for new IoT focused technologies to be integrated into the 4G networks. Some of these technologies being developed and deployed are the LTE-M and NB-IoT (Narrow Band IoT). NB-IoT focuses specifically on indoor coverage, low cost, long battery life, and enabling a large number of connected devices. LTE-M will allow Internet of Things devices to connect directly to a 4G network, without a gateway, and on batteries.

To facilitate the development of these exciting technologies, SODAQ which previously launched their NB-IoT shield for Arduino last year is incorporating a range of u-blox SARA modules in its design. The SARA modules are available for NB-IoT, LTE-M but also for 2G and 3G. The following are the u-blox Sara modules used in their IoT cellular suite are:

  • SARA-N211 – NB-IoT, band 8 and 20, for the European and African market.
  • SARA-R410M – Dual mode LTE-M and NB-IoT module for all global bands.
  • SARA-R412M – Triple mode module with LTE-M, NB-IoT, and 2G for all global bands.

The SODAQ board is called the SODAQ SARA. The SARA is an Arduino sized and compatible development board running the Atmel SAM-D21 32 bit microcontroller, along with one of the three u-box modules. In addition to the cellular modules, the SODAQ SARA comes integrated with a u-blox SAM-M8Q GNSS module for precise geolocation. SODAQ claims the GNSS module offers more accurate positioning than conventional GPS because it utilizes the Beidou, Galileo and Glonass satellites. It also comes with an accelerometer/magnetometer chip.


SODAQ is also launching a small form factor (SFF) edition of the same board with a size of about 55 x 25mm and still maintains the same functionality on the bigger board. One significant feature of their boards is that you can power the board directly with a solar panel and further program the boards with the Arduino development tools (Arduino IDE).

SODAQ is currently crowdfunding the boards on Kickstarter. With the three different LTE IoT module and two types of boards, SODAQ is offering a total of 6 different versions of its boards:

  • SARA-N211 NB-IoT (Band 8/20) for 90 Euros
  • SARA-R410M NB-IoT  + LTE Cat M for 100 Euros
  • SARA-R412M NB-IoT + LTE Cat M + 2G fallback for 110 Euros with 1,200 mAh battery
  • SFF N211 for 95 Euros
  • SFF R410M for 105 Euros
  • SFF R412M for 115 Euros with 800 mAh battery

If all goes well in the Kickstarter campaign and SODAQ raises the required €25,000 over the remaining days of its campaign, the Internet of Things Development Suite will start shipping out to backers during March 2018.

Ikalogic logic analyzers come with open source protocol decoder scripts

The MicroUSB-connected ScanaQuad series of 4-channel logic analyzers from Ikalogic perfectly fit serial protocols debugging and diagnostic purposes for the like of I2C, SPI, RS232, CAN or 1-Wire. By Julien Happich @

Smaller than a matchbox and available in four versions, the ScanaQuad Logic analyzer captures or generates signals or do both simultaneously, not only supporting protocol debugging but also useful to stimulate a circuit with test patterns and check its response.

The four versions include the SQ25 with a 25MHz sampling rate and 256k Pts per channel, the SQ50 with a 50MHz sampling rate and 1M Pts per channel, the SQ100 with a 100MHz sampling rate and 2M Pts per channel and the SQ200 with a 200MHz sampling rate and offering 4M Pts per channel. Complex multi-step trigger lets you target precise features of your data, like a specific I 2C address or a CAN frame ID. Trigger sequences can even be defined for proprietary protocols.

Over 30 open-source protocol decoder scripts are available, included by default, but intuitive ScanaStudio software allows users to modify existing protocol scripts or write their own proprietary decoder via an integrated IDE using (Java) scripts.

Ikalogic is actively working on new software updates as well as new products and supports its user base with a forum and downloadable code on GitHub.

website –

Newly Developed Internal Temperature Sensor For Li-ion Battery Enables 5x Faster Charging

Researchers at the University of Warwick in the UK have developed sensors which measure the internal temperature and electrode potential of Lithium batteries. The technology is being developed by the Warwick Manufacturing Group (WMG) as a part of a battery’s normal operation. More intense testings have been done on standard commercially available automotive battery cells.

Researchersdeveloped a sensor to measure the internal termperature and electrode potential of lithum batterry
Researchers developed a sensor to measure the internal temperature and electrode potential of lithium battery

If a battery overheats it becomes a risk for critical damage to the electrolyte, breaking down to form gases that are both flammable and can cause significant pressure build-up inside the battery. On the other hand, overcharging of the anode can lead to Lithium electroplating, forming a metallic crystalline structure that can cause internal short circuits and fires. So, overcharging and overheating of a Li-ion battery is hugely damaging to the battery along with the user.

The researchers at Warwick developed miniature reference electrodes and Fiber Bragg Gratings (FBG) threaded through a strain protection layer. An outer coat of Fluorinated Ethylene Propylene (FEP) was applied over the fiber, ensuring chemical protection from the corrosive electrolyte. The end result is a sensor which has direct contact with all the key components of the battery. The sensor can withstand electrical, chemical and mechanical stress faced during the normal operation of the battery while still giving accurate temperature and potential readings of the electrodes.

The device includes an in-situ reference electrode coupled with an optical fiber temperature sensor. The researchers are confident that similar techniques can also be developed for use in pouch cells. WMG Associate Professor Dr. Rohit Bhagat said,

This method gave us a novel instrumentation design for use on commercial 18650 cells that minimizes the adverse and previously unavoidable alterations to the cell geometry,

The data from these internal sensors are much more precise than external sensing. This has been shown that with the help of these new sensors, Lithium batteries that are available today could be charged at least five times faster than the current rates of charging.

This could bring huge benefits to areas such as motor racing, gaining crucial benefits from being able to push the performance limits. This new technology also creates massive opportunities for consumers and energy storage providers.

gen4-4DPi Series – Primary Displays for the Raspberry Pi

The gen4-4DPi range are Primary Display’s for the Raspberry Pi* A+, B+, Pi2, Pi3, Pi Zero and Pi Zero W, which display the primary output of the Raspberry Pi, like what is normally sent to the HDMI or Composite output. It features an integrated Resistive Touch panel or Capacitive Touch panel, enabling the gen4-4DPi to function with the Raspberry Pi without the need for a mouse.


  • Universal Primary Display for the Raspberry Pi
  • Compatible with Raspberry Pi A+, B+, Pi2, Pi3, Pi Zero and Pi Zero W
  • 480×272 Resolution (4.3”)
  • 800×480 Resolution (5.0” & 7.0”)
  • TFT Screen with integrated 4-wire Resistive Touch Panel (T), or Capacitive Touch Panel (CT)
  • Display GUI output / primary output, just like a monitor connected to the Raspberry Pi
  • High Speed 48MHz SPI connection to the Raspberry Pi, featuring SPI compression technology
  • Typical frame rate of 20 Frames per second (FPS) – 4.3”, or 7 Frames per second (5” & 7”), higher if image can be compressed further by the kernel. Lower if no compression is possible
  • Powered directly off the Raspberry Pi, no external power supply is required
  • On board EEPROM for board identification, following the HAT standard

Available in:

  • gen4-4DPi-43T       (4.3” Resistive Touch)
  • gen4-4DPi-50T       (5.0” Resistive Touch)
  • gen4-4DPi-70T       (7.0” Resistive Touch)
  • gen4-4DPi-43CT    (4.3” Capacitive Touch)
  • gen4-4DPi-50CT    (5.0” Capacitive Touch)
  • gen4-4DPi-70CT    (7.0” Capacitive Touch)


PIC Arduino with RS485

This board created for makers, who wants to use various Arduino UNO shields using PIC microcontrollers from Microchip. Board facilitates the use of any 28 PIN SMD SO PIC microcontrollers without crystal (internal oscillator). Project also can be used to develop RS485 application with the help of on board SN75176 IC. Two regulators provide 3.3V and 5V DC outputs. ICSP connector provided to program the PIC IC using PICKIT2/PICKIT3 programmer. On board DC jack connector and additional CN2 Header connector helps to power up the board. Input supply 7V-15V DC. This board has been tested using PIC16F886 IC. Switch SW1 helps to reset the board. Please refer to PCB top layout for Arduino Vs. Microchip Pin configuration.

PIC Arduino with RS485 – [Link]

TS-4100 – A i.MX6 UL (UltraLite) Bases Hybrid SBC With FPGA And Programmable ZPU Core

Technologic Systems has begun testing its first i.MX6 UL (UltraLite) based board, which is also its first computer-on-module that can work as a single board computer. The footprint of 75 x 55mm TS-4100 module features a microSD slot, onboard eMMC, a micro-USB OTG port with power support, and optional WiFi and Bluetooth. This board offers long-term support and a temperature operating range of -40 to 85°C, and ships with schematics and open source Linux images (Ubuntu 16.04 and Debian Jesse).

Technologic System's Hybrid SBC TS-4100 (front)
Technologic System’s Hybrid SBC TS-4100 (front)

This board contains a low-power (4k LUT) MachX02 FPGA from Lattice Semiconductor. Technologic has improved the FPGA with an open source, programmable ZPU soft core that provides support for offloading CPU tasks as well as harder real-time on I/O interactions. The 32-bit, stack-based ZPU architecture offers a full GCC tool suite. In this implementation, it’s imbued with 8K of BlockRAM, which can be accessed by the i.MX6 UL, and has full access to all FPGA I/O.

The low-power i.MX6 UL and its power management IC are utilized to provide an efficient 300mW typical power usage. The module is equipped with 512MB to 1GB DDR3. The specification list concludes only 4GB MLC eMMC or 2GB of “robust” SLC eMMC as options, but the block diagram suggests you can load up to 64GB eMMC.

The TS-4100 is equipped with a pair of 10/100 Ethernet controllers plus LCD and I2S interfaces for media connectivity. There are also several serial and USB interfaces along with the micro-USB OTG port. Other interfaces are listed as an accelerometer, gyro, SPI, I2C, and PWM and 2 separate CAN buses.

Key specifications for the TS-4100:

  • 512MB to 1GB DDR3 RAM
  • 4GB MLC eMMC or 2GB SLC eMMC (possibly up to 64GB eMMC)
  • MicroSD slot
  • Wireless — 802.11 b/g/n with antenna; Bluetooth 4.0 BLE
  • 2x 10/100 Ethernet controllers
  • Parallel LCD
  • I2S audio
  • Micro-USB OTG port (with power support)
  • USB 2.0 OTG (with power support)
  • 2x RS232
  • RS232 for Linux console
  • SPI, I2C, 2x CAN buses
  • Optional FPGA/ZPU-linked 16-pin expansion header (5x DIO, 1x SPI, 1x I2C) for optional daughter cards
  • 46x DIO (linked to FPGA)
  • 8x PWM
  • Accelerometer/gyro
  • 5V input via USB or via baseboard
  • 0.3W typical consumption
  • Operating temperature — -40 to 85°C
  • Dimensions — 75 x 55mm
  • Operating systems — Linux 3.14.52 (Ubuntu 16.04 and Debian Jessie)

Advantech SOM-5871 Module Introduces The New AMD Ryzen Embedded V1000 SoC

Taiwan based Advantech Co. has posted an introductory product page for a SOM-5871 module that appears to introduce the long-awaited next generation of AMD’s embedded R-Series SoC line. The R-Series is based on the same 14nm Zen Core already used in higher-end Ryzen SoCs. The new SoC is introduced as the “AMD Zen CPU Core” on the product pages and is called the AMD V1000 SoC on this Advantech COM Express teaser page.

Advantech SOM-5871 preliminary photo and specs
Advantech SOM-5871 preliminary photo and specs

According to the Advantech SOM-5871 product page, the AMD V1000 supports a core/thread of “2/4/8”. This obscure listing could mean it supports both dual-core, quad-threaded and quad-core, octa-threaded models, which are the configurations listed for the iBase Mini-ITX SBC. The iBase board also had the same memory support as Advantech’s SOM-5871. They both have up to 32GB of dual-channel DDR4-2400/3200 with optional ECC support.

Advantech also lists the SoC can have 1MB or 2MB cache, a 12-54W TDP, an integrated I/O chipset, and an SPI-based AMI 64MB BIOS. No clock speed information is available yet of this SoC. On the other hand, the Vega GPU embedded in this SoC has 11 compute units clocked at 1.5GHz and supports H.265 decode and encode and VP9 decode. The Vega also supports DirectX 12, EGL 1.4, OpenCL 2.1, OpenGL ES 1.1, 2x, and 3x, as well as OpenGL Next/OpenGL 4.6. The SOM-5871 module supports 4K video as well as four independent symmetrical displays.

SOM-5871 front view
SOM-5871 front view

No OS support information was mentioned for Advantech’s board. Most probably Linux and Windows support are available for SOM-5871, but the module is said to support the company’s iManager, WISE-PaaS/RMM, and Embedded Software APIs. In addition to the specs remarked above, the 125 x 95mm SOM-5871 Type 6 Basic module comes with dual GbE controllers (Intel I210 AT and I210 IT) and dual 6Gbps SATA III interfaces.

No pricing or availability information was provided for Advantech’s introductory SOM-5871 module or the iBase Mini-ITX and embedded signage PC products. More information may be found at Advantech’s SOM-5871 product page.

PacketMonitor32 – An ESP32-Based Packet Monitor with OLED

Wi-Fi Packet Monitors are usually a computer program or sometimes a piece of computer hardware that can be used to intercept and log traffic over a Wi-Fi network. My favorite software tool of all is the popular Wireshark which I have used several times for hacking Wi-Fi based hardware, like integrating the common Wi-Fi smart socket with OpenHAB. Packet monitor tools give the possibility of seeing what type of data is being sent out by a wireless device and provides us with the chance of conjoining that data for our purpose.

ESP32 Packet Monitor

Apart from the use of software for packet capture, we can also leverage hardware for this. The Espressif Systems ESP8266 and the ESP32 modules have been a go-to module for a lot of makers regarding Wi-Fi/IoT applications. Stefan Kremser aka Spacehuhn who first launched an Esp8266 based packet monitor, earlier last year has released an improved opensource ESP32-based packet monitor which is available on Tindie and Aliexpress for purchase.

The original Packet Monitor board put together by Spacehuhn is based around the ESP8266 and allowed you to see data packets flying around you in real-time. It tells how many Wi-Fi packets are sent every second and on which channel. It is also able to display the result on a small OLED Screen. The ESP32 version comes with some new features.

Then new ESP32 Packet monitor includes some new features to the existing ESP8266 Packet monitor. It adds an SD card support for capturing and saving traffic data with the possibility analyzing that data at other time, unlike the ESP8266 which shows only the current packet only, the ESP32 version displays an average RSSI (Received Signal Strength Indicator), and of course offer an improved performance due to the increased power of ESP32. It is built around the ESP32-Wrover module, which has 4MB Flash and 4MB PSRAM.

Like it’s predecessor ESP8266 PacketMonitor, the ESP32 PacketMonitor32 has a 1.3-inch OLED for displaying the traffic data. It can be powered via its micro USB jack or with a Lipo battery that also includes both over-charging and over-discharging protection. The board comes in two different versions, the one with an external (IPEX) antenna support, and one with a PCB antenna support. The one with the IPEX antenna offers increased range but won’t work without the antenna connected. It is possible to run on your code on the board or use the Spacehuhn packet monitoring software.
The PacketMonitor32 board is avaiable now for purhase on Tindie, and on AliExpress, with a price tag of $19.

ESP8266: Monitoring Power Consumption

Dani Eichhorn @ writes:

In this post I’m going to show you how you can monitor the power consumption of your battery driven (ESP8266/ ESP32) device. Measuring the power consumption over a full activity/ sleep cycle is the precondition to optimize your code for a longer battery runtime. Only with a reliable tool you can decide which code changes lead to less consumption. In a later post we’ll look at some tweaks we can apply to the code to get a few more days out of the battery.

ESP8266: Monitoring Power Consumption – [Link]