balenaFin Developer Kit Review – Part 1: Unboxing and Assembly Instructions

balenafin power rtc battery

Balena launched balenaFin 1.1 at the end of last month. The board is a professional carrier board for Raspberry Pi Compute Module 3 / 3+ Lite that includes support for variable voltage power input, optional PoE, industrial eMMC flash storage, a real-time Arm Cortex-M4 core via Artik-020 module, and more. Somehow a balenaFin 1.1 developer kit ended up in my home, and I’ll play with it in several weeks, but in the first part of the review, I’ll just check out the content of the package, and show how to assemble the kit. BalenaFin 1.1 Developer Kit Unboxing The local courier brought a largish balena Fin package. which contained a smaller balenaFin package, and the actual developer kit. Everything is nicely packaged in the box with the part related to power supply in a white box, a small opening for smaller accessories and Raspberry Pi Compute Module 3, as well as compartments for the enclosure and a package with the …

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Renesas RZ/G2 64-Bit MPUs Target Industrial Applications Leveraging SLTS Linux

RZ/G2M 96 Development Kit

Renesas RZ/G1 Cortex-A15/A7 processor series was introduced in 2016 targeting industrial human machine interface, and RZ/G1M was one the the first processors supported by the industrial-grade CIP Super Long-Term Support (SLTS) Linux kernel – as part of Renesas RZ/G Linux Platform – with commitment of over 10 years of support. The company has now launched a 64-bit version of the industrial processors with Renesas RZ/G2 family featuring up to eight Cortex-A53/A57 cores and supported by RZ/G Linux Platform for long term Linux support. Renesas RZ/G2 family is now comprised of four SKUs with the following key features and specifications. RZ/G2 Series RZ/G2E RZ/G2N RZ/G2M RZ/G2H Economical Mid-Range (Pin Compatible) Highest Performance CPU (64-bit ARMv8A) 2x Cortex-A53 @ 1.2GHz L1, L2 Parity/ECC 2x Cortex-A57 @ 1.5GHz L1, L2 Parity/ECC 2x Cortex-A57 @ 1.5GHz 4x Cortex-A53 @ 1.2GHz L1, L2 Parity/ECC 4x Cortex-A57 @ 1.5GHz 4x Cortex-A53 @ 1.2GHz L1, L2 Parity/ECC Performance 5.5kDMIPS 12.3kDMIPS 23.3kDMIPS 35.6kDMIPS DRAM I/F DDR3L-1866 x 32-bit …

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CompuLab UCM-iMX8M-Mini is a Stamp Size i.MX 8M Mini SoM

Compulab i.MX 8M Mini SoM

We’ve recently written about several new hardware platforms based on the latest NXP i.MX 8M Mini processor family including Nitrogen8M_Mini SBC and F&S Elektronik PicoCore MX8MM SoM. Thanks to a new 14-nm process, the new family has the advantage of consuming less power, and the Cortex-A53 cores can run at a higher frequency. They should cost less as well thanks to cost-saving measures like the adoption of a 1080p video decoder instead of a 4K decoder found in the older NXP i.MX 8M family. CompuLab has now launched their own NXP i.MX 8M Mini SoM with UCM-iMX8M-Mini module that’s about the size of a largish stamp (38 x 28 mm) suitable for portable and space constrained applications such as professional handheld devices, wearable healthcare monitors and medical devices, autonomous drones with visual object recognition, or portable instrumentation equipment with advanced HMI. CompuLab UCM-iMX8M-Mini SoM specifications: SoC (one or the other) NXP i.MX8M Mini Quad Arm Cortex-A53 processor @ 1.8GHz, Arm …

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NanoPi R1 is an Allwinner H3 Gateway with Dual Ethernet, WiFi and Bluetooth

NanoPi R1

A couple of years ago, Shenzhen Xunlong Software launched Orange Pi R1 board powered by Allwinner H2+ processor with two Fast Ethernet ports, and some I/Os which could be useful for intelligent controllers and simple IoT gateways. FriendlyElec has now launched a similar, but improved product with their NanoPi R1 featuring Allwinner H3 processor coupled with 512MB or 1GB memory, two Ethernet ports, WiFi and Bluetooth connectivity, packaged in a neat metal case. NanoPi R1 specifications: SoC – Allwinner H3 quad-core Arm Cortex-A7 processor @ up to 1.2GHz with Mali-400MP2 GPU System Memory – 512MB or 1GB DDR3 RAM Storage – MicroSD Slot, optional 8GB eMMC flash Connectivity 1x Gigabit Ethernet, 1x Fast Ethernet 802.11b/g/n WiFi 4 with SMA antenna interface Bluetooth 4.0 dual mode (Classic / LE) USB – 2x USB Type-A host ports, 1x  micro USB OTG port Debugging – 3-pin 2.54mm pitch header for serial console Serial – 4-pin 2.54mm pitch UART header (compatible with Seeed Studio …

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ARIES M100PF PolarFire FPGA System-on-Module Targets Industrial Applications, RISC-V Development

ARIES M100PF RISC-V FPGA SoM

MicroSemi unveiled PolarFire RISC-V FPGA SoC at the end of last year, bringing an alternative to Xilinx Zynq (Arm Cortex-A9 + FPGA) and UltraScale+ (Cortex A53 + FPGA) SoCs. The system-on-chip is expected to be mass produced later in 2019, so development is done on HiFive Unleashed RISC-V board and its FPGA expansion board. In the meantime, MicroSemi PolarFire FPGAs (without RISC-V hard core) are available now, and ARIES Embedded planning to showcase what they claim is the first PolarFire FPGA system-on-module at Embedded World 2019 with their M100PF SoM targeting industrial applications. ARIES Embedded M100PF key features and specifications: A choice of 3 PolarFire FPGAs MPF100T – 109KLE, 336 Math Blocks (18x18MACC) MPF200T – 192KLE, 588 Math Blocks (18x18MACC) MPF300T – 300KLE, 924 Math Blocks (18x18MACC) System Memory – 512 MiB / 1 GiB / 2 GiB DDR3 RAM Storage – 256 MiB configuration device, 4 GiB eMMC flash by default (Option up to 64GB) 2x Samtec QSH-090-01-F-D-A 180-pin …

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Papyr is a Nordic nRF52840 based Bluetooth/802.15.4 ePaper Display

papyr nRF52840 epaper display

Electronut Labs has designed a Nordic Semi nRF52840 boards featuring a black, red, and white e-Paper display. Papyr board supports both Bluetooth LE (BLE5, BLE Mesh) and 802.15.4 (Thread, Zigbee) connectivity, and can be controlled via an Android app, with iOS support coming later on. Papyr hardware specifications: Wireless Module – Raytac MDBT50 module with Nordic nRF52840 BLE/802.15.4 SoC (as used in Raytac MDBT50Q-RX Bluetooth 5 LE USB adapter) Connectivity – Bluetooth 5 LE/Mesh, 802.15.4 (Thread/Zigbee), NFC (PCB antenna) Display – 1.54″ 200×200 pixel red/black/white epaper display USB – 1x micro USB device port Expansion – Extra GPIOs via 2.54mm header Debugging – SWD Programming header Misc – RGB LED, push button, USB/Battery power switch Power Supply – 5V via USB, or CR2477 coin cell Dimensions – 65 x 35 mm You can control the board using Electronut Labs app for Android. Three features are supported at this stage: Draw, Select image, and Transfer data over MQTT. Beside the board …

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nRF52840 MDK Base Dock Adds AA Battery Holder, Grove Connectors

nRF52840 MDK Base Dock

Makerdiary nRF52840 Micro Development Kit (MDK) is a breadboard-friendly devkit for Nordic Semi nRF52840 multi-protocol wireless SoC that supports Bluetooth 5.0, Thread, IEEE 802.15.4, ANT, and 2.4GHz proprietary, and various popular frameworks or OS such as Arm Mbed OS, or the Zephyr Project. nRF52840 MDK Base Dock makes development just a little easier, by adding an AA battery holder, and four Grove connectors compatible with Seeed Studio’s Grove modules. nRF52840 MDK Base Dock specifications: Dual 2×18 Socket Headers compatible with nRF52832-MDK & nRF52840-MDK 4 Grove connectors with selectable UART/I2C/I2S/PDM/QDEC/SPI/ADC NFC tag-A PCB Antenna Power Power button with latching circuit AA battery holder Synchronous, Step-up Converter with VIN>VOUT Down Mode Operation 0.8V-to-4V Input Range 3.3V Output with Over-Current Protection Battery level sensing with 1:2 voltage divider on AIN2 Low power consumption: 5uA Shutdown Current; 145uA Idle Current Dimensions – 58mm x 54mm x 17mm The board also adds an NFC PCB antenna and a power button. There’s no specific documentation for …

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Google & Arduino Unveils the Arduino Science Kit Physics Lab

Arduino Science Kit Physics Lab

Google and Arduino have partnered together to developer and launch the Arduino Science Kit Physics Lab, the first official Arduino kit designed for middle school curriculum (ages 11 to 14). Based on Arduino WiFi MKR1010, the science kit will allow pupils to experiment with forces, motion, and conductivity, and log data with Google’s Science Journal “digital science notebook” app for Android. Arduino Science Kit Physics Lab kit content: Arduino MKR WiFi 1010 based on Microchip SAMD21 Cortex-M0+ MCU and Espressif Systems ESP32 WiSoC (WiFi + Bluetooth) Arduino Science Carrier Board 2x Silicone standoffs 1x Flat micro USB cable 1x Grove-compatible light sensor module 1x Grove-compatible temperature sensor module 1x Grove-compatible white LED module 3x Grove Cable 20cm – universal 4-pin connector 2x Double-ended cable: crocodile clip/banana plug (50 cm), 2x Double-ended cable crocodile clip/banana plug (20 cm) 1x Magnet 1x Hook-and-loop Velcro strap, 1x Hook-and-loop Velcro dot 2x PCB sticks, 1x PCB encoder 1x Mini slinky metal spring 8x Flat head …

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