Home Labs Stories UPGRADING LORAWAN APPLICATION BY ADDING BLE PATH TO PROVISIONING & LOCAL DEBUGGING ONTO MICROCHIP ATSAMR34 XPLAINED PRO KIT

UPGRADING LORAWAN APPLICATION BY ADDING BLE PATH TO PROVISIONING & LOCAL DEBUGGING ONTO MICROCHIP ATSAMR34 XPLAINED PRO KIT

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ABOUT THIS STORY


Posted on Dec. 24, 2018



Intermediate
2 Hours

Introduction


Adding short-range wireless connectivity like Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) to an existing Long-range / LoRaWAN Application can be very useful for many use cases.

• Geo location
When GPS is not available, an indoor positioning solution can track objects and vehicles.
A BLE beacon (peripheral) is required for positioning and send a signal frequently. A BLE locator device (central) scan the Bluetooth activity around and transmit the location of the beacon via LoRaWAN to a network server. In general, the location of the beacon device is determined in the cloud by triangulation based on the signal strength of the BLE beacon. Outdoor positioning may be also possible using LoRa technology and TDoA (Time Difference of Arrival) technique if the end-node is covering by at least 3 LoRa Gateways with accurate time references (GPS inside).

• Manufacturing provisioning
Simplified the LoRaWAN end-node provisioning (OTAA/ABP keys exchange) and regional band selection using BLE for an easy wireless setup, calibration, diagnostics, parameters and software update via a smartphone or a tablet application.

• Local data collection / On-site Maintenance
With BLE, a LoRa IoT node become accessible to the user or the maintenance operator which can take control locally on the device with an App installed on his mobile.

• HMI replacement
To interact with the LoRaWAN end-node, an HMI device such as smartphone or tablet can replace obviously external interaction (button, display, etc.).

• No Wi-Fi or cellular service in-sight
Majority of BLE-based IoT applications use mobile phones as gateways to the cloud via its cellular connection. But in absence of a cellular or mobile phone, this is where LoRa comes in. LoRa and BLE perfectly complement each other in an IoT battery-powered network to extend its battery life and limiting de facto its maintenance. Together, BLE and LoRa provide the combination of short-range, inter-device communications and long-haul backhaul over distance and allow the implementation of an IoT networks in a much broader geographic area even with no Wi-Fi or cellular service in sight.

The purpose of this abstract is to demonstrate by simple example how to answer some of the use cases listed above by adding a Microchip ATBTLC1000ZR BLE solution to an existing LoRaWAN Application based on ATSAMR34 Xplained Pro board.

More information on these product could also be found here :
https://www.microchip.com/design-centers/wireless-connectivity/low-power-wide-area-networks/lora-technology/sam-r34-r35

http://www.microchip.com/ATBTLC1000-zr