TOKYO--(Freescale Semiconductor (NYSE: FSL) today announced the availability of its metropolitan area network (MAN) development kit, the TWR-METRO-KIT-NA/JA, enabling developers to quickly build a 6LoWPAN-compliant smart object network out of the box, integrate it with their own hardware and perform network performance evaluation in a real-world environment. Freescale teamed with Nivis, a technology company with a long history of creating challenging mesh networks, because of their experience creating software stacks for constrained IPv6 devices.)--
“We’re providing a turnkey solution to implement IP networks that must not fail even in demanding and expansive RF environments, such as smart energy connectivity applications”
Metropolitan area networks are ideal for applications such as “last mile” smart metering communication and street lighting control. A metropolitan area network is typically defined by extreme reliability over many miles while serving thousands of nodes per edge router or data concentrator, with each node capable of meshing at dozens of hop levels deep.
“We’re providing a turnkey solution to implement IP networks that must not fail even in demanding and expansive RF environments, such as smart energy connectivity applications,” said Bruno Baylac, director of the Metering, Medical & Connectivity business unit at Freescale. “Quite often our customers don’t have the time or the specialized resources to develop these complex networks. This kit combines efficient hardware and proven software to help remove years of effort.”
The TWR-METRO-KIT-NA/JA contains two wireless end nodes that are portable and battery-powered and one wireless edge router that connects to a PC or notebook, forming a solid basis to begin network evaluation and development. The kit can be easily expanded to support up to 20 end nodes. Each end node is built with a Nivis Smart Objects radio module containing a Freescale Kinetis K series MCU based on the ARM® CortexTM-M4 core and a Freescale MC12311 sub-GHz smart radio transceiver with up to +15dBm of native transmit power for miles of range without the need for RF power amplification. At the core of the edge router is a Freescale QorIQ P1025 processor built on Power Architecture® technology and running Nivis edge-router software.
The kit and the Nivis Smart Objects radio modules are expected to be certified for use in the United States, Canada, the European Union and Japan, allowing developers to quickly move from evaluation to developing prototypes for large field trials. A full application program interface (API) is defined for the Nivis Smart Objects radio modules, enabling embedded system designers to easily connect a module to any host processor where MAN wireless connectivity is required. Any of the network end nodes can be accessed by a full range of IPv6 commands sent directly from any Internet browser.
The TWR-METRO-KIT-NA/JA is entirely based on IEEE® and open Internet communication standards. The application, transport and networking layers of the Smart Objects stack are based on the latest Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF) standards, which include CoAP, UDP, IPv6/6LoWPAN, RPL and ICMP. The application layer payloads adhere to EXI/XML encoding. The radio uses the new IEEE 802.15.4e Time Synchronized Channel Hopping MAC and IEEE 802.15.4g PHY specifications. Nivis is a global leader in smart grid and industrial wireless networks and has been actively testing their Smart Objects open standards stack in the Internet Protocol for Smart Objects (iPSO) Alliance interop events.
In August 2012 at the IETF interoperability event in Vancouver, British Columbia, Nivis used the Freescale MAN development kit to flawlessly interact with devices located in Canada, Finland, France, Sweden and the United States through a cloud-hosted application, all using the standard Internet Protocol for Smart Objects (iPSO) application template. Eight other iPSO member companies participated in the interoperability event.
“The future Internet of Things will consist of interconnected smart objects from different vendors that are capable of exchanging valuable data,” said Robert Assimiti, Nivis’ director of technology and co-chair of the IPSO Interop Committee. “We added another brick to the IoT foundation during this event. Based on state-of-the-art Freescale chipsets, the Nivis Smart Object is a symbiosis of powerful hardware and firmware allowing it to become an integral part of the Internet.”
Pricing and availability
The TWR-METRO-KIT-NA/JA is expected to begin shipping by the end of November 2012 for $800.00 (USD). For more information, visit: www.freescale.com/Tower.
About the Freescale Technology Forum
Created to drive innovation and collaboration, the Freescale Technology Forum (FTF) has become one of the developer events of the year for the embedded systems industry. The Forum has drawn more than 48,000 attendees at FTF events worldwide since its inception in 2005. The FTF Japan 2012 event will take place Oct. 22-23 in Tokyo. For more information, visit www.freescale.com/FTFJapan.
About Freescale Semiconductor
Freescale Semiconductor (NYSE: FSL) is a global leader in embedded processing solutions, providing industry-leading products that are advancing the automotive, consumer, industrial and networking markets. From microprocessors and microcontrollers to sensors, analog integrated circuits and connectivity – our technologies are the foundation for the innovations that make our world greener, safer, healthier and more connected. Some of our key applications and end-markets include automotive safety, hybrid and all-electric vehicles, next generation wireless infrastructure, smart energy management, portable medical devices, consumer appliances and smart mobile devices. The company is based in Austin, Texas, and has design, research and development, manufacturing and sales operations around the world. www.freescale.com
Founded in 1998, Nivis is a leader in open standard wireless sensing and control network technologies, including 6LoWPAN, RPL/RoLL, ISA100.11a, and WirelessHART. Nivis technologies are field-proven and at work today inside some of the largest smart metering and industrial wireless OEMs. Nivis serves customers in 27 countries worldwide from its U.S. headquarters in Atlanta, Georgia and its European offices in Belgium and Romania. www.nivis.com
Freescale, the Freescale logo, Kinetis, QorIQ are trademarks of Freescale Semiconductor, Inc., Reg. U.S. Pat. & Tm. Off. ARM is the registered trademark of ARM Limited. Cortex is the trademark of ARM Limited. The Power Architecture and Power.org word marks and the Power and Power.org logos and related marks are trademarks and service marks licensed by Power.org. All other product or service names are the property of their respective owners. © 2012 Freescale Semiconductor, Inc.