Robustel introduces EG5101 and EG5200 Debian 11 industrial IoT gateways with 4G LTE cellular connectivity

Robustel introduced the EG5101 and EG5200 industrial IoT gateways running Debian 11 a few weeks ago, both with 4G LTE cellular connectivity, but the NXP i.MX 6ULL-based EG5101 has a more compact design, while the NXP i.MX 8M Plus-powered EG5200 provides more I/Os and resources.

Expanding the earlier EG5100, EG5120, and LG5100 models from the company, the two edge computing gateways target Industry 4.0 and smart infrastructure applications and enable real-time analytics at the edge with lower latency than running workloads in the cloud.

Robustel EG5101 EG5200 Debian 11 industrial gateways
Robustel EG5101 (left) and EG5200 (right)

Robustel EG5101 and EG5200

  • SoC/Memory/Storage
    • EG5101
      • NXP i.MX 6ULL Cortex-A7 32-bit processor @ 792 MHz
      • 512MB to 1024MB DDR3
      • 8GB eMMC flash
    • EG5200
      • NXP i.MX 8M Plus quad-core Cortex-A53 64-bit processor @ 1.6 GHz with 2.3 TOPS NPU
      • 4GB DDR4
      • 32GB eMMC flash, microSD card socket
  • Connectivity
    • EG5101
      • 1x 10/100 Mbps Ethernet port
      • 4G LTE with 1x SMA-K antenna connector, 2x Mini SIM (2FF)
    • EG5200
      • 5x Gigabit Ethernet ports
      • 4G LTE with 3x SMA-K antennas, 2x Mini SIM (2FF)
      • GNSS support with 1x SMA-K antenna
      • Dual-band WiFi 6 2×2 MIMO and Bluetooth 5.2
  • USB
    • EG5101 – 1x USB 2.0 host port
    • EG5200 – 2x USB 3.0 host ports, 1x USB 2.0 OTG Type-C port
  • Serial
    • EG5101 – 1x RS232, 1x RS485 via 6-pin terminal block
    • EG5200
      • 2x RS232/RS422/RS485 (software configurable) via 2x 5-pin terminal block
      • RJ45 RS232 console interface
  • Other features for EG5200 only
    • HDMI 2.0 video output
    • DIO
      • 2x digital inputs (wet contact) via 4-pin terminal block up to +30V DC
      • 2x relay outputs via 6-pin terminal block up to +48V DC
  • Misc – Reset button,  LED indicators, support for external watchdog
  • Power Supply
    • EG5101 – 9 to 36V DC via 2-pin terminal block
    • EG5200 – 9 to 60V DC via 2-pin terminal block
  • Power consumption
    • EG5101 – Idle: 56 mA @ 12V; data link: 423mA (peak) @ 12V
    • EG5200 – Idle: 8.76W ; data link: 25.44W (peak)
  • Dimensions & Weight
    • EG5101 – 134.8 x 105 x 32 mm  | 374 grams (Aluminum enclosure)
    • EG5200 – 128 x 111 x 58 mm  | 622 grams (Metal enclosure)
  • Temperature Range
    • EG5101 – Operating: -20 to +70°C; storage: -20 to +85°C
    • EG5200 – Operating: -30 to +70°C; storage: -40 to +85°C
  • Relative Humidity – 5 ~ 95% RH
  • IP Rating – IP30
EG5200 gateway typical application
Application example

The hardware between the EG5101 and EG5200 differs quite more than I expected when I first started this post, but both run the same RobusOS Pro operating system based on Debian 11 and with support for C, C++, Python, Java, Node.js, etc programming through an SDK provided by the company. In a typical scenario, the gateway would gather data from sensors using WiFi, Ethernet, or serial (RS232/RS485), potentially do some processing at the edge (especially the EG5200 with a built-in AI accelerator), before sending relevant data to the cloud, for example, the Robustel Cloud Manager Service (RCMS) hosted on Microsoft Azure or privately hosted for custom solutions.

The NXP i.MX 6ULL processor was launched in 2016, so it may feel odd to launch a new gateway in 2023 (almost 2024) with a 7-8 years old processor, but that can make sense since NXP offers longevities of 10 to 15 years, and even more for its processors.

NXP i.MX 6 longevity
NXP i.MX 6 processors’ longevity

For example, we can see the i.MX 6ULL processor found in the EG5101 gateway will be available at least until October 2031, and some other models like the i.MX 6UltraLite will be available at least until December 2035. NXP has also extended the i.MX 6ULL longevity to 15 or 20 years in the future if there’s demand.

Both the EG5101 and EG5200 industrial IoT gateways appear to be available now, but pricing has not been made public. Further details may be found on the respective product pages as well as in the press release.

Thanks to TLS for the tip.

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