Sensor development kits accelerate IoT system design

3rd September 2014
Posted By : Nat Bowers
Sensor development kits accelerate IoT system design

Accelerating the design of environmental and biometric sensing applications for IoT products, Silicon Labs has announced two development kits. The kits are suited for applications including home security systems, smart thermostats, smoke detectors, weather stations, smart watches, fitness bands, heart-rate earphones and other wearable products.

The SLSTK3201A environmental sensing development kit is designed to simplify the development of IoT products that sense RH, temperature, UV light, ambient light, proximity and human gestures. The kit is comprised of an EFM32 Zero Gecko MCU starter kit, a sensor expansion board and gesture-controlled weather station application which that tracks RH, temperature and UV index. In order to reduce application development time, the complete source code is available from Silicon Labs’ Simplicity Studio development platform.

The biometric sensing development platform is comprised of the BIOMETRIC-EXP-EVB expansion card which plugs directly into the EFM32 Wonder Gecko MCU starter kit. Making it easier to measure heart rate, blood oxygen level, UV index, RH and temperature, the card features Silicon Labs’ Si114x optical sensors and Si701x/2x humidity and temperature sensors. An optional wearable-form-factor HRM-GGG-PS board is available that supports wrist-based heart rate monitoring and connects to the biometric sensor card through an I2C mini-flex cable. The biometric demonstration firmware for the EFM32 Wonder Gecko starter kit is available for free from Silicon Labs. The library module includes a heart rate algorithm with source configuration files so that biometric sensor drivers do not need to be developed from scratch.

Operating from coin-cell batteries, both sensor expansion cards feature Silicon Labs’ TS3310 boost DC/DC converter to help minimise energy consumption.

Ross Sabolcik, Vice President and General Manager, Analog, Power and Sensor products, Silicon Labs, commented: “Highly accurate, ultra-low-power environmental and biometric sensing capabilities are as critical to today’s IoT and wearable applications as energy-friendly MCUs and standards-based wireless connectivity. Silicon Labs’ sensor ICs offer the state of the art in humidity, temperature, ambient light, UV index and proximity sensing for the IoT. We enable developers to simplify their designs and speed time to market with an array of plug-and-play development kits coupled with our Simplicity Studio software tools.”

The SLSTK3201A environmental sensing kit is available now for $109. The BIOMETRIC-EXP-EVB expansion card and EFM32WG-STK3800 Wonder Gecko starter kit are available now for $50 and $79, respectively. The optional HRM-GGG-PS wearable wrist-based heart rate monitor board is available now for $50.

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