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November, 2015 - issue No. 9, vol. 13


the east european resource for embedded applications

NOVEMBER 2015 Table of Contents

DESIGN FEATURES 10 How LTE is the enabling technology for new automotive systems The rapid rollout of LTE by cellular radio operators is not just about increasing the available bandwidth for data communications. As the fastest growing telecommunications standard in history, it has already started to create hundreds of billions in new revenue streams through a better user experience and the delivery of multimedia-rich services and applications, while at the same time creating network management efficiencies that will go directly to the bottom line. Yet this is only the tip of the iceberg.

14 Understanding Wireless M-Bus for the European Smart Meter Market The term Internet of Things (IoT) has gained enormous popularity with the explosion of wireless sensor networks, smart meters, home automation devices and wearable electronics. The IoT spans long-range outdoor networks such as the smart grid and municipal lighting as well as shorter -range indoor networks that enable the connected home, residential security systems and energy management.Wireless connectivity and standards-based software protocols provide critical enabling technology for the IoT. A case in point is wireless connectivity for smart metering systems. One of the most useful wireless protocols for smart metering to emerge in recent years is Wireless M-Bus, which is widely used for metering applications across Europe.

18 In the mix Correctly mixing the output of RGB LEDs is an art, but can be helped with a demonstration board and a PIC12 processor.

22 The Birth of Synergy: Revolutionary New Path to Faster Embedded MCU System When Renesas engineers first began to consider how they would package MCU-based solutions for the Internet-of-Things (IoT) market, they looked closely at the unique challenges this opportunity presented. In applications ranging from factory floor automation to home automation, the opportunities appeared endless.

26 Indoor tracking with Beacons - Beacons Can Be Used for Industrial Purposes Too Since Apple launched the iBeacon last year many specialists have worked on the basis that the tiny transmitters will change our lives completely. Because unlike GPS and cellular mobile phone tracking beacons can locate a position within decimeters - even inside a building. They open up countless application scenarios. Now Nordic Semiconductor has also launched a beacon solution.

28 Understanding Power Factor and the Need for Power Factor Correction Until the era of switching power supplies, Power Factor – and power factor correction – wasn’t a big concern for all but a handful of electrical engineers working with large electric motors, and other, generally high-power and industrial, electric loads. Now, thanks to international legislation governing power factor and harmonic distortion, this subject is high on the list of concerns for many engineers designing systems for global use. Here CUI’s Arun Ananthampalayam examines the issues surrounding power factor and its implications for engineers.

31 Leuze – Complete cost-effective packaging solutions 35 Leuze signaling devices - Clear signals for automation 38 The Lighting - Energy saved is money saved COMPEC understands how important it is to keep your buildings and production facilities running as efficiently as possible. If you wish to save as much energy and ongoing maintenance as possible, we have also included a cross section of our current LED lighting range.


Embedded Systems (p 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9) Active Components (p 30, 36, 37) 5





Group Publishing Director Gabriel Neagu Managing Director Ionela Ganea Accounting Ioana Paraschiv Advertisement Irina Ganea WEB Eugen Vărzaru © 2015 by Euro Standard Press 2000




EP&Dee | November, 2015 |

Contributing editors Radu Andrei Ross Bannatyne Consulting Marian Blejan Bogdan Grămescu Mihai Savu Asian Reprezentative Taiwan Charles Yang tel: +886-4-3223633


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EP&Dee (electronics products & design - eastern europe) is published 10 times per year in 2015 by euro standard press 2000 s.r.l. it is a free to qualified electronics engineers and managers involved in engineering decisions. starting on 2010, this magazine is published only in digital format. copyright 2015 by euro standard press 2000 s.r.l. all rights reserved.

INDUSTRY NEWS Altera Discloses Industry’s First Heterogeneous SiP Devices that Integrate HBM2 DRAM with FPGAs Altera Corporation disclosed the industry’s first heterogeneous System-in-Package (SiP) devices that integrate stacked HighBandwidth Memory (HBM2) from SK Hynix with high-performance Stratix® 10 FPGAs and SoCs. Stratix 10 DRAM SiP represents a new class of devices that is specifically architected to meet the most demanding memory bandwidth requirements in high-performance systems.

Stratix 10 DRAM SiP will offer over 10X higher memory bandwidth relative to discrete DRAM solutions that are available today. This unprecedented level of bandwidth is required in data center, broadcast, wireline networking and high-performance computing systems, which are processing an everincreasing amount of data. Altera is the first company to integrate this breakthrough 3D stacked memory technology alongside an FPGA. Stratix 10 DRAM SiP enables users to customize their workloads and achieve the highest memory bandwidth in a power-efficient manner. Altera is actively working with over a dozen customers to integrate these DRAM SiP products into their next-generation high-end systems. Heterogeneous SiP products from Altera are enabled by using Intel’s Embedded MultiDie Interconnect Bridge (EMIB) technology. EMIB technology uses a small high-performance, high-density silicon bridge to connect multiple die together in a single package. EMIB technology features very short traces between die, allowing Altera to cost-effectively build heterogeneous SiP devices that provide higher performance and higher throughput at lower power compared to interposer-based solutions. ALTERA

EMBEDDED SYSTEMS ARM mbed OS Gets Energy Friendly with Gecko Technology from Silicon Labs Silicon Labs announced broad support for ARM® mbed™ OS within the energy-friendly EFM32® Gecko MCU portfolio based on ARM Cortex®-M processors. Silicon Labs’ Giant Gecko, Happy Gecko, Leopard Gecko and Wonder Gecko MCUs running mbed OS along with mbed power management application programming interfaces (APIs) provide bestin-class energy efficiency, design simplicity and security technology for embedded developers creating battery-operated, ARM-based connected devices for the IoT. Silicon Labs is demonstrating its mbed-supported development platform in the ARM mbed Zone at ARM TechCon today. Showcasing Silicon Labs’ popular Cortex-M3based EFM32 Giant Gecko MCU, Bluetooth® Smart technology, and Si114x optical sensor for ambient light and heart rate monitoring (HRM), the development platform demonstrates how easy it is to design energy-friendly connected devices that support mbed OS, Bluetooth Smart connectivity and biometric sensing. A pioneer in the use of optical sensors for HRM applications, Silicon Labs has developed unique hardware and software technology to simplify heart-rate measurements in wearable designs.

In related news, ARM introduced its new wearables reference design featuring mbed OS integration at ARM TechCon, which incorporates power-management APIs that Silicon Labs and ARM co-developed and introduced earlier this year. These lowpower mbed APIs now provide a foundation for all peripheral interactions in mbed OS. Designed with real-world, low-energy application scenarios in mind, the APIs allow mbed OS developers to optimize their ARM mbed-supported designs for low energy consumption and longer battery life. Leveraging the power management APIs built into mbed OS, Silicon Labs’ EFM32 Gecko MCUs automatically enable the optimal sleep mode based on the MCU peripherals in use, which can dramatically reduce system-level energy consumption. “We welcome Silicon Labs’ support for mbed OS and look forward to our continued collaboration across APIs and reference designs that will drive the future of ultra-low-power ARMbased microcontroller platforms,” said Zach shelby, vice president of marketing, IoT business, ARM. “Silicon Labs’ deep understanding of system-level energy optimization, combined with mbed OS support, will help to advance innovation in energy-constrained IoT device technologies relating to elements such as sensing and low-power connectivity.” “The combination of Silicon Labs’ Gecko MCU, wireless and sensing solutions and ARM’s energy-friendly mbed OS implementation provides an unparalleled platform for developing standards-based, low-energy products for the IoT,” said daniel cooley, vice president of marketing for Silicon Labs’ IoT products. “ARM mbed OS advances C++ embedded design for the IoT by abstracting the complexity out of device-to-cloud connectivity while providing essential security features to help safeguard IoT products.” SILICON LABS


EP&Dee | November, 2015 |



Microchip’s dual-channel USB-port power controller maximises system reliability and uptime using dynamic thermal management Microchip announces the expansion of its programmable USB-port power controller portfolio with the dual-channel UCS2112. This new USB-port power controller supports two ports, with eight programmable continuous current limits, ranging from 0.53 to 3.0 Amps for each port, to enable faster charging times at higher currents. Features for protecting and increasing overall system uptime also include integrated current monitoring, precision current limiting, charge rationing and dynamic ther-

mal management. The UCS2112 helps designers to address a wide array of host devices, such as the laptops, tablets, monitors, docking stations and printers found in automotive, computing, education and aviation applications, as well as multi-port charging accessories and storage. This device has the flexibility to work individually, or in conjunction with USB hubs, to create a complete charging and/or USB-communication system. For a better end-user experience, the UCS2112’s dynamic thermal-management feature throttles back the current limit as it approaches the thermal limit, preventing shutdown and allowing for charging where other devices have stopped completely. The UCS2112’s integrated current monitor eliminates the need for an external sense resistor and enables an “attach detect” signal that does not rely on the main power to be active for hosts that are off or sleeping. Current monitoring and rationing also help to manage multiple charging devices and can balance a dynamic load current for systems with smaller power supplies. The UCS2112 also aligns with the USB Power Delivery initiatives from the USB Industry Forum, and is in compliance with various charging specifications, including the USB-IF BC1.2. The UCS2112 USB-port power controller is supported by Microchip’s new UCS2112 Evaluation Board (ADM00639) priced at $140, which is available today. The UCS2112 is available now for sampling and volume production in a 20-pin QFN package. Key facts: • Faster charging at higher currents enabled by up to 3 Amps of continuous current per port • Integrated current monitoring for increased system uptime • Manages multiple charging devices and provides dynamic load current balancing • Designed for host devices, multi-port charging accessories and storage applications MICROCHIP TECHNOLOGy

Win a microchip curiosity development board!

EP&Dee is giving you the chance to win a Microchip Curiosity Development Board (DM164137)! This board is a cost-effective, fully integrated 8-bit development platform targeted at first-time users, makers and those seeking a feature-rich, rapid prototyping board. Designed from the ground-up to take full advantage of Microchip’s MPLAB X integrated development environment, the Curiosity Development Board includes an integrated programmer/debugger, and requires no additional hardware to get started. The Curiosity Development Board supports all low-voltage, programming-enabled 8bit PIC® MCUs from 8 to 20 pins. Curiosity is the perfect platform to harness the power of modern 8-bit PIC Microcontrollers. Its layout and external connections offer unparalleled access to the Core Independent Peripherals (CIPs) available on many newer 8-bit PIC MCUs. These CIPs enable the user to integrate various system functions onto a single MCU, simplifying the design and keeping system power consumption and BOM cost low. Out of the box, the development board offers several options for user interface - including physical switches, an mTouch capacitive button, and an on-board potentiometer. A full complement of accessory boards is available via the MikroElectronika Mikrobus interface footprint. In addition, Bluetooth Low Energy communication can easily be added using an available Microchip RN4020 module.

For the chance to win a Curiosity Development Board from Microchip, please visit: and enter your details in the entry form. | November, 2015 | EP&Dee




Enable Rapid Prototyping for Commercial IoT Deployments with ARM mbed and Maxim Microcontrollers maxim integrated’s low power maX32600mbed brings integrated security and precision analog to the iot. With the addition of MAX32600MBED to the ARM® mbed™ IoT Device Platform program, mbed engineers and IoT developers can quickly develop embedded systems based on the MAX32600 microcontroller (MCU) from Maxim Integrated Products, Inc.

IAR Systems introduces starter kit for state machine-based development IAR Systems® launches a starter kit for the state machine toolset IAR visualSTATE®. The complete starter kit is targeted for developers interested in exploring state machine-based embedded development and includes evaluation versions of IAR visualSTATE as well as the embedded development toolchain IAR Embedded Workbench®. The kit features an evaluation board based on a STM32F429 device from STMicroelectronics and an I-jet Lite debug probe. To get users up and running quickly, a number of example applications are included. Developers can use IAR visualSTATE to build their design from a high level, structure complex applications, step by step add functions in detail, and automatically generate code that is 100 percent consistent with the design. This methodology can be extremely helpful when realizing large design projects for embedded applications. The tools also provide advanced formal verification, analysis and validation that can be used to make sure the applications behave as intended. The latest version, 7.5, includes a number of updates for improved compliance with the MISRA C/C++ coding standards. This is very beneficial for customers working for example in the automotive segment.

To make it easier and faster to design Internet of Things (IoT) applications with differentiated silicon, Maxim has developed software libraries and development hardware for its MCUs to be prototyped through mbed. MAX32600MBED includes a MAX32600 ARM Cortex®-M3 based microcontroller, prototyping area with adjacent access to precision analog front end (AFE) connections, I/O access through Arduino®-compatible connectors, additional I/O access through 100mil × 100mil headers, USB interface, and other generalpurpose I/O devices. Key advantages • Fast time to market: Ease of design with access to software, tools, infrastructure, and support community • Integrated security: On-board trust protection unit • Low power: 175µA/MHz with full SRAM retention in 1.5µA standby mode “Maxim has been making microcontrollers for a long time for specific markets; now with our mbed supported platform, we’re opening up our technology so any developer and any application can make use of our security, analog, and low power technology,” said Kris ardis, Executive Director for Micros & Security, Maxim Integrated. “We will continue to support the mbed ecosystem on upcoming Maxim microcontrollers, enabling any designer to build secure, power-conscious Internet of Things applications.” “Trusted products are required for enterprises looking to take advantage of IoT deployment for efficiencies,” said Zach shelby, Vice President of Marketing, IoT Business, ARM. “Maxim’s offering brings secure, low power, mixed-signal microcontrollers to ease the development path to IoT products, and this will be welcomed by the growing mbed community.” MAxIM INTEGRATED 6

EP&Dee | November, 2015 |

IAR KickStart Kit for visualSTATE contains an easy-to-use evaluation board specially designed for the display of the examples provided. The board can be powered via the included debug probe I-jet Lite, which provides JTAG and SWD debug interfaces. The board is based on a STM32F429 microcontroller from STMicroelectronics. This ARM® Cortex®-M4 device features a rich set of peripherals for connectivity, graphics and audio. The kit is based on the latest version 7.5 of IAR visualSTATE, which includes MISRA C/C++ compliance improvements, easier Coder API switches and reduced build time. In addition, a context-sensitive help system has been introduced as a complement to the comprehensive user guides and step-by-step tutorials available in the toolset. IAR visualSTATE is completely integrated with the powerful C/C++ compiler and debugger toolchain IAR Embedded Workbench. When using the tools together, full state machine debugging on hardware is available. IAR SySTEMS



CODICO continues to grow: Acquisition of Broadband Technology AB in the Nordics CODICO GmbH, the Austrian distribution company for electronic components continues its growth strategy by acquiring a 100% stake in Swedish firm Broadband Technology AB as of 11 November 2015. The objective behind the acquisition of the Swedish distribution company is to expand CODICO's presence in the Northern European market. Stockholm-based Broadband Technology AB has been operating in the market for the last 15 years, and is considered a leading design-in company in the Nordics. The company's product range includes active components and modules, and new suppliers predominantly from the wireless segment will now be added to the CODICO line card, opening new potentials for synergies and further growth. Broadband Technology will be integrated in CODICO GmbH as a fully-owned subsidiary, and for the time being the Broadband brand will be maintained. During the coming months, the head office

of Broadband in Stockholm will be upgraded to an additional product competence centre next to those in Perchtoldsdorf (Austria) and Munich (Germany), so as to offer professional support to existing and potential customers in Northern Europe. “The acquisition of Broadband will not only expand our product range, but also our knowhow. We regard this expansion as a building block in our long-term growth strategy and as an essential element of internationalisation. CODICO and Broadband operate on the basis of a similar design sales approach, and they also share the same values and visions. For this reason, we believe we have found the perfect partner in Broadband for this merger”, explains sven Krumpel, CEO of CODICO GmbH. The main philosophy of Broadband - and of CODICO - is to support customers with profound expertise from the product idea to well beyond the order placement. “Through the merger with CODICO, Broadband will give its customers access to new products, state-ofthe-art logistics, profound technical expertise,

Sven Krumpel, ceo codico Gmbh and outstanding services”, says magnus Gustavsson, CEO Broadband Technology AB, explaining the reasons behind the partnership decision. Mr Gustavsson further says that Broadband’s main focus are the needs and expectations of the customers - and he sees the acquisition by CODICO as a marriage of strengths and know-how. CODICO


Atollic unifies fragmented ARM tools market with free no limitations TrueSTUDIO C/C++ IDE Atollic® announced the launch of the new TrueSTUDIO Lite, a completely free, commercial-quality IDE without code-size or device usage limitations. This gives the ARM development community a high-quality, free-of-charge tool that everyone can standardize on. The tool is free to download, use and share. No registration is required. The industry at large is suffering from the fragmentation caused by a vast amount of similar development tools with little differentiation. They all offer basic edit/compile/debug capabilities but often suffer from poor usability experiences due to the tool being less tightly integrated than a unified professional tool chain. Others may be locked to a single chip vendor which limits the breath of target support. The lack of standardization often leads to duplication of efforts, code portability challenges, and increased cost for middleware suppliers and development consultants.

For the first time, the ARM development community will be able to standardize on a completely free tool, with full commercial quality, no code size limitations, and not locked to a single microcontroller family or supplier. TrueSTUDIO Lite is based on an open standard tools platform of Eclipse/GCC/GDB and is extended and enhanced with commercial-quality modifications, getting started wizards, and extensive target support for ARM-based microcontrollers. The result is a high-quality, polished, and stable development environment. A standardized tool will benefit the entire community, not just developers. With developers using a single, free tool, microcontroller vendors will no longer need to commit huge resources to develop their own free tools with ‘me-too’ functionality. And additionally, middleware vendors will be able to reduce their porting and maintenance costs. ATOLLIC 8

EP&Dee | November, 2015 |

EMBEDDED SYSTEMS Microchip Releases Next-Generation Bluetooth® Low Energy Solutions Microchip announces its next-generation Bluetooth® Low Energy (LE) solutions. Qualified to the latest Bluetooth 4.2 standard, the IS1870 and IS1871 Bluetooth LE RF ICs, and the BM70 module, expand Microchip’s existing Bluetooth portfolio and carry worldwide regulatory and Bluetooth Special Interest Group (SIG) certifications. These new offerings are ideal for Internet of Things and Bluetooth Beacon applications, making it easy for designers to take advantage of the low power consumption and simplicity of Bluetooth LE connectivity.

Microchip’s new Bluetooth LE devices include an integrated, certified Bluetooth 4.2 firmware stack. Developers can expect up to 2.5 times faster data transfer speeds and greater connection security, with government-grade (FIPS-based) secure connection support. Data is sent and received over the Bluetooth link using Transparent UART mode, making it easy to integrate with any processor or the hundreds of Microchip’s PIC® microcontrollers that have a UART interface. The module also supports standalone “hostless” operation for beacon applications. The optimised power profile of these new devices minimises current consumption for extended battery life, whilst compact form factors down to 4 × 4 mm for the RF ICs and 15 ×12 mm for the module reduce board space. The module options include RF regulatory certifications, or non-certified (unshielded/antenna-less) modules for smaller and more remote antenna designs that will undergo end-product emission certifications. Microchip’s Bluetooth LE modules include all of the hardware, software and certifications that designers need. Developers can leverage Microchip’s Bluetooth Qualified Design ID (QDID) to easily list their products with the Bluetooth SIG. Embedded Bluetooth stack profiles include GAP, GATT, ATT, SMP and L2CAP, as well as proprietary services for Transparent UART. All modules are configurable using Microchip’s Windows® OS-based tools. Microchip also announces the BM70 Bluetooth Low Energy PICtail™/PICtail Plus daughter board. This new tool enables code development via USB interface to a PC, or by connecting to Microchip’s existing microcontroller development boards, such as the Explorer 16, PIC18 Explorer and PIC32 I/O Expansion Board. The BM-70-PICTAIL is available now priced at $89.99 each. The IS1870 Bluetooth LE RF IC is available today in a 6 × 6 mm, 48-pin QFN package, whilst the IS1871 is expected to be available in November, in a 4 × 4 mm, 32-pin QFN package. The 30-pin BM70 Bluetooth LE modules are available today, with or without built-in PCB antennas. MICROCHIP TECHNOLOGY



Ballistocardiographic sensors provide contactless approach to measuring patient vital signs Murata announced two MEMS sensor products that use ballistocardiographic (BCG) techniques to detect and measure a patient’s heart rate without the need for any wires or connections. Designed for continuous patient monitoring at elderly care centres, hospitals or in the home, the SCA11H sensor node and SCA10H sensor module can also be used in a wide range of applications such as bed occupancy monitoring and sleep quality analysis.

With ballistocardiology, an extremely sensitive MEMS sensor is used to detect the recoil effect of the heart pumping blood around the body. When lying on a bed the entire bed will start to vibrate due to this movement. The MEMS accelerometer captures this signal which is then passed to a microcontroller running a special algorithm. This allows the microcontroller to extract heart rate and other vital signs information from the signal. The SCA10H is a PCB module comprising the sensor and microcontroller that is designed for medical devices and equipment manufacturers to incorporate into their own products and even into a hospital bed. This module measures just 28 × 26 × 7 mm and requires a supply voltage in the range 8 to 10 VDC. It consumes 8 mA and can detect pulses in the range of 40 – 120 bpm. The SCA11H sensor node is a complete BCG-based product that comprises the sensor, microcontroller and a Wi-Fi transceiver all housed in an IP55-rated waterproof enclosure that measures 84 × 41 × 18 mm. This is ideal for software solution providers and system integrators that wish to focus on service creation rather than become involved in designing electronic systems. The Wi-Fi transceiver is capable of operating in either a local mode or a cloud mode. The local mode is used for presenting and processing data in a local network using a mobile application while the cloud mode enables connection to a cloud service architecture. The sensor node also supports over-the-air (OTA) firmware upgrades. A software development tool kit (SDK) will be available for the SCA11H WiFi sensor node to aid developers integrate it into their own applications. Both sensors can output a range of vital signs including heart rate (bpm), respiration rate (rpm), heart rate variability, relative stroke volume together with bed occupancy / movement sensing, but are not qualified or approved as such for medical use. OEMs manufacturing system are responsible for potential medical approvals required in their specific use. the sca11h and sca10h will be showcased at the murata booth 8bK17 during the forthcoming medica/compamed exhibition in düsseldorf, 16 – 19 november. MURATA

MOST® Linux Driver for Microchip’s MOST Network Interface Controllers Added to Open Source Linux Mainline Kernel 4.3 Microchip Technology Inc., a leading provider of microcontroller, mixed-signal, analog and Flash-IP solutions, today announced that the MOST® Linux Driver supporting Microchip’s MOST network interface controllers has been incorporated into the staging section of the Linux Mainline Kernel 4.3 operating system. The increasing demand for reliable and simple solutions to support audio, video and data communications in cars is driving the trend toward using Linux and open-source software in combination with MOST technology, the de-facto standard for high-bandwidth automotive multimedia networking.

“We appreciate the Linux Foundation’s support in making the MOST Linux Driver part of the Linux Mainline Kernel 4.3,” said dan termer, vice president of Microchip’s Automotive Information Systems Division. “Incorporating this driver will make it easy for designers who are innovating the cars of the future to combine MOST technology with Linux, thereby significantly shortening time-to-market and reducing development costs.” MOST technology is a time-division-multiplexing (TDM) network that transports different data types on separate channels at low latency and high quality-ofservice. The Linux Driver allows for the transport of audio data over the MOST network’s synchronous channel, which can be seamlessly delivered by the Advanced Linux Sound Architecture (ALSA) subsystem, providing system designers the ability to easily transmit audio over MOST technology using a standard soundcard. Additionally, this driver enables the transport of video data with guaranteed bandwidth, by using the MOST network’s isochronous channel and the Video for Linux 2 (V4L2) interface. This feature results in the ability to seamlessly connect standard multimedia frameworks and players over the Linux Driver to a MOST network. MICROCHIP TECHNOLOGy | November, 2015 | EP&Dee




how lte is the enabling technology for new automotive systems the rapid rollout of lte by cellular radio operators is not just about increasing the available bandwidth for data communications. as the fastest growing telecommunications standard in history, it has already started to create hundreds of billions in new revenue streams through a better user experience and the delivery of multimedia-rich services and applications, while at the same time creating network management efficiencies that will go directly to the bottom line. Yet this is only the tip of the iceberg. Author: Stefano Moioli, Director Product Management Cellular at u-blox

Consumers are pressing for a seamless, highspeed connectivity experience from the home to the automobile, while fleet managers and public transportation officials are seeing both the revenue and savings potential of high-speed data combined with M2M-communications and accurate asset location tracking. Clearly LTE is rewriting business and revenue models for companies and industries across the board, not just for the network providers. The next step is to focus on timeto-revenue, which is where it becomes important to understand not just what LTE means and where it is going, but also what are the solutions available to help get up and running quickly with reliable, globally acceptable, rugged and easy-to-implement solutions. Such solutions can help device and systems developers focus on current and rapidly unfolding next-generation applications, without having to continually reinvent the connectivity wheel. consistent growth figures, ± a few billion The exponential growth in revenue from LTE services from the 380 fully commercial networks launched, is clear in the figures, with only slight deviations of a few billion dollars here or there. Recent figures from SNS Research earlier this year estimates that LTE service revenues will account for nearly US$170 billion in 2015, growing at a CAGR of 30% each year out to 2020. Figures from ReportsnReports in May of 2014 show a similar pattern, predicting that global LTE service revenue will cross 10

EP&Dee | November, 2015 |

US$500 billion in 2018, up from $78 billion in 2013. It will exhibit a CAGR of 46% during this period. Geographically, North America, Western Europe and Asia Pacific will account for 83% of the global LTE service revenue by 2018. USA (primarily AT&T and Verizon), South Korea and Japan have established themselves as the early leaders in LTE. However, the developing and underdeveloped market in Asia and Africa hold huge business potential for LTE, according to the RnR. This is a classic case of leap-frogging: going right to the most advanced technologies in “greenfield development” areas where there may be little or no infrastructure that carriers may have already invested in. “Good” infrastructure and services, can, in many ways get in the way of “great” infrastructure and services, so developing regions stand to benefit quickly. Driven by these revenue prospects, operators are continuing to aggressively invest in LTE infrastructure, despite the enormous costs. They can ill afford to not invest: there’s just too much services revenue at stake. Encompassing macrocell base stations (eNBs), small cells and EPC/mobile core equipment, SNS expects LTE infrastructure spending to account for nearly $33 billion by the end of 2020, while ReportsnReports expects that by 2018, the total capital expenditure globally on LTE will have reached $180 billion. the lte differentiator To explain why operators are so willing to spend billions on brand new LTE equipment that will over time be incompatible with the

billions of dollars of 2G and 3G equipment already deployed, it helps to understand what LTE is and what provides in terms of services to users, as well long-term savings in total cost of ownership (TCO) for operators and carriers. LTE stands for Long Term Evolution as defined by the Third Generation Partnership Project. The “Evolution” is toward a fully compliant 4G interface, with 4G being defined by the ITU-R in 2008 and now enshrined within the IMT-Advanced specification. The IMT-Advanced 4G standard emphasizes media-rich applications and calls for a complete switch to higher-efficiency and lower-cost Internet protocol (IP) packetswitching networks for both voice and data. Current networks use a parallel arrangement whereby circuit-switched networks are used for voice and packet-switched networks for data. IMT-Advanced also calls for better use of equipment, mixing small cells and macro cells according to the user density and a number of other efficiencies. For users, IMT-Advanced sets how spectrum should be used more efficiently using various modulation schemes, bandwidth settings, operating frequencies, latency requirements, and carrier formats. This spectrum usage means much higher mobile download rates of at least 100 Mbits/s, when in a car or public transport, for example, and stationary or nomadic download rates of 1 Gbit/s while at home or moving around in a public space.


At the time ITU-R made its recommendations in 2008, these capabilities were unheard of. The technology was not available and the operators were not in a position to deploy anything close to these capabilities. At that point it was agreed that technologies such as LTE could be called 4G – if they provided much-improved download rates over 3G networks such as W-CDMA, UMTS, EV-DO Rev. A, HSPA 3.6 and HSPA 7.2. These 3G networks had theoretical download and upload rates that peaked at 14 Mbits/s and 5.7 Mbits/s, respectively. As a 4G technology, LTE Category 4 (Cat. 4) goes much faster, now regularly reaching rates of up to 150 Mbits/s and continues to rapidly evolve toward full packet-switched networks using Voice over LTE (VoLTE) technology. LTE continues to evolve daily, with work now underway to roll out carrier aggregation and other techniques that will enable it to achieve 1-Gbit/s downloads. When it does so, LTE will step into and qualify as “true 4G” terrain as defined by IMT-Advanced. At that point it will become LTE-Advanced. Until then, the evolution and the excitement around LTE’s journey and the revenue-generating services it increasingly enables, continues unabated. In April this year, during the Bank of America Merrill Lynch 2015 New York Auto Summit, General Motors announced that the company’s OnStar 4G LTE Wi-Fi hotspot service in


cars and trucks could generate $350 million in improved profits for the company over three years. The company’s CFO called it, “an untapped under-appreciated opportunity.” OnStar was first introduced in 1996 for embedded telematics, including concierge, diagnostics and location tracking for emergencies. Now GM has launched 4G LTE in over 30 of its 2015-model vehicles in North America. Future plans call for its rollout in overseas markets. GM’s lead in this type of deployment is a true reflection of what’s needed at the user level. With increased viewership of overthe-top (OTT) video services on mobile devices, from smartphones to tablets and notebooks, being able to achieve the same level of service quality, whether at home or on the road, is a must. Analyst IDC put some numbers around the trend: In a smartphone survey, 54% of smartphone owners were streaming video content, while in the U.S., 27% of respondents said they purchased movies on their smartphones, “which was slightly ahead of worldwide respondents at 23%.” IDC also cited Vodaphone’s note during a 2014 earnings call that video traffic in Europe grew almost 90%. 4G Americas expects mobile video traffic to increase by 70% by 2018. While the trend is real, given the demand for IP-enabled high-quality media, navigation,

chevrolet speeds up With onstar 4G lte

voice and data communications, and seems intuitively simple, equipping every car with high-speed LTE capability isn’t so easy. There are reasons GM is only doing it one country at a time, not least of which is being able to pass international wireless regulations. Wireless is notoriously difficult. Interference, emissions, antenna placement, and regulations have slowed down many designs. When it comes to automotive, it has to be right and it has to be compliant. This is the point at which designers face the “make or buy” decision point, and increasingly they are heading down the “buy” path. The return on investment on starting from scratch just isn’t there, especially when ready-to-go modules such as are available.

Figure 2: using a “nested” board layout approach, developers can upgrade lte connectivity options over time without starting from scratch. it’s an exciting alternative to classic size-constrained “pin-for-pin” compatibility. The use of these modules makes the design, implementation and regulatory compliance process a lot simpler. Some come with a PCIe interface, such as the MPCI-L2 LTE, which supports multiband LTE, along with HSPA+ and GPRS/EDGE.

Figure 1: Gm was ahead of the curve when it announced lte-based in-cabin video streaming services in 2011 and expanded it in 2014. now it predicts $350 million extra in profit over the next three years: a solid services investment. Image Source: Motor Authority

The module is compliant with LTE Cat. 4, with rates up to 150 Mbits/s, with variants for America and Europe/Asia, making compliance easier. Another key feature to watch out for is temperature range, especially for automotive and remote monitoring and data aggregation applications. The MPCI-L2 is a good example of what to expect with a range of -40 to +85°C. | November, 2015 | EP&Dee



The PCIe option is good where a system where there is plug-and-play access for relatively frequent upgrades, or where it may be required to interface directly to a computer system. However, in extremely spaceand cost constrained applications where higher volumes are expected, a module may be a designers’ better option. An interesting tweak to the module concept comes in the form of the TOBY-L2 series. Also LTE/HSPA+/GPRS compliant, the module comes in an LGA package for easy manufacturing, but the twist is that it’s part of a “nested” design approach whereby the customer’s PC board is configured such that different module form factors supporting different technologies can be used over time as the requirements change. Typically designers are presented with a pin-for-pin compatibility option, but this tends to constrain the form factor, and therefore the options, at a later point if upgrades are required. Chances are, upgrades will be required. For now, the 150 Mbits/s download capability will serve router needs within a vehicle well. Vehicle-mounted LTE routers will enable high-speed downlink of up to 100 Mbit/s (LTE category 3) to the car. This is enough to support 5 parallel high-definition TV channels, and more than enough to support the more typical mix of video, voice, Internet access and social media applications used by passengers. Used in conjunction with the vehicle navigation system, content will also be pushed to the vehicle depending on where it is, for example video-rich information about services or points of interest nearby. This of course puts the onus upon carriers to spend on CAPEX in order to expand their capabilities, yet the streaming services revenue goes to OTT providers, not the carriers. That is a call-to-action for operators to revisit their business models. One enormous application which is literally screaming for service attention and which has huge upside for providers and independent companies is fleet management of automobiles, trucks or emergency vehicles. In North America, Verizon is one of many operators that are already addressing the opportunity. Its Networkfleet solution uses 12

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GPS for accurate location tracking, while transmitting vehicle data over a secure wireless network to the Networkfleet Data Center. The installed Networkfleet units monitor vehicle location, engine diagnostics, and other fleet performance metrics – 24/7.

Figure 3: Verizon’s networkfleet is an example of value-added services that uses a combination of Gps plus a secure cellular connection to the back-end system to enable fleet management. customers have their own secure access to a custom dashboard. Fleet operators access a secure Networkfleet website to receive vehicle alerts, track vehicle locations, and monitor driver behavior. Using PCs, smart phones and tablets, managers monitor fleet tracking data to make real-time decisions that lower costs and improve fleet performance. The Networkfleet model converges with the Internet of Things (IoT) where data is collected and analyzed continuously to achieve better business outcomes. For example, predictive maintenance based the analysis of data over time can prevent breakdowns. Devices that enable this include the ODINW2, a compact yet powerful stand-alone multiradio module, designed for Internetof-Things applications. The module is complete with embedded driver, stack and application for wireless data transfer and AT-command configuration. Wireless support includes dual-mode Bluetooth v4.0 (classic Bluetooth and Bluetooth low energy), plus dual-band Wi-Fi (2.4 GHz and full 5 GHz band). The module can be used as a point-to-point serial cable replacement. ODIN-W2 supports multiple concurrent Bluetooth and Wi-Fi connections that can operate in Wireless Multidrop or Extended Data Mode for advanced multipoint capabilities. The EMMY-W1 module adds NFC capability, while the ELLA-W1 module is an end-to-end Bluetooth, Wi-Fi solution with

MAC/baseband and an SDIO interface to the host. Note that IoT applies to drivers too: monitoring and analysis of driver patterns indicating sleepiness or carelessness can also prevent accidents. lte plus Gps = driverless cars The application of fleet-management techniques is only the starting point. Driverless cars are “closer than they appear” thanks in part to the increasing availability of modules and systems that incorporate both GPS and LTE. For example, the NEO-M8L standalone module combines a high performance concurrent positioning engine with 3D Automotive Dead Reckoning (ADR) technology to provide providing 100% coverage and continuous 3D positioning for road vehicle applications. The device is highly sensitive, has fast GNSS signal acquisition and tracking, integrates easily into a system. The module’s on-board 3D accelerometer, 3D gyroscope sensors, and speed-pulse input (hardware or message-bus) deliver a complete solution for road vehicle ADR applications with continuous, accurate positioning. Devices such as the NEO-M8L completely change the model for how transportation of goods and people is managed. For now, LTE and GPS give enormous insight but will soon allow drivers to be replaced in more and more situations where little or no human interaction is required. In future, other business models will include remote video monitoring via LTE, with monitoring stations located anywhere in the world. Operators will be able to bill for security services based on equipment installation, equipment provisioning and leasing, management software, hours per day used (for example, only after shop closing times, or only when motion detected), and cloudbased storage of video streams. For digital signage, LTE can enable rapid image updating, with associated service charges to the advertiser, while cloud storage and hosted applications benefit from faster access and downloads, all are access points for operators looking to benefit from the LTE tsunami to come ■ u-blox



understanding Wireless m-bus for the european smart meter market The term Internet of Things (IoT) has gained enormous popularity with the explosion of wireless sensor networks, smart meters, home automation devices and wearable electronics. The IoT spans long-range outdoor networks such as the smart grid and municipal lighting as well as shorter -range indoor networks that enable the connected home, residential security systems and energy management. Wireless connectivity and standards-based software protocols provide critical enabling technology for the IoT. A case in point is wireless connectivity for smart metering systems. One of the most useful wireless protocols for smart metering to emerge in recent years is Wireless M-Bus, which is widely used for metering applications across Europe. Author: Vivek Mohan, Senior Product Manager, IoT MCU and Wireless Products at silicon labs

What is Wireless m-bus? Meter-Bus (M-Bus) is based on European standards for smart meter communication. This connectivity can be wired or wireless, and the standard specifies the communication link between smart meters and data collectors, as shown in Figure 1. The standard also applies to heat cost allocators and driveby or stationary remote meter reading devices. Wireless M-Bus – the wireless version of the M-Bus standard – existed for

more than a decade and is seeing continuous growth in a number of deployments across Europe. Based on sub-GHz frequency bands (169MHz, 434MHz and 868MHz), wireless M-Bus uses a simple star type of network configuration with a protocol that is optimized for the needs of smart meter devices. The sub-GHz frequencies enable better propagation characteristics than higher frequencies such as 2.4GHz. The longer range allows the radio waves to reach difficult wire-

Figure 1: connected metering system architecture


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less locations such as underground installations or meters behind several walls and obstructions. IP addressability and mesh networking are not specified in the standard although meters are individually addressable and may support relaying or routing of messages in some modes. The lower data rates and small packet lengths support a low-power, long-range solution with a small software stack implementation. Low power is critical for water and gas meters, which are battery powered and need to operate reliably for more than 10 years. The frequencies, modulation (FSK based) and bandwidths required by the standard make it spectrally efficient compared to spread spectrum-based protocols. The underlying technology is available from multiple suppliers and is completely standards-based, which makes it a very competitive solution in the market and beneficial for consumers. The combination of these factors makes wireless M-Bus a costeffective connectivity solution for smart metering in Europe. standards and organizations Several European standards and organizations are relevant to wireless M-Bus. However, there is no common industry alliance or certification process specifically



created for wireless M-Bus. In Europe, all subGHz wireless devices must comply with ETSI EN 300 220, which sets the emission limits in various frequency bands among other specifications. The European Committee for Standardization (CEN) also defines EN13757, which comprises six different parts. Parts 3 and 4 are most relevant for wireless M-Bus implementations. The different parts specify requirements from the physical layer to the application layer for both wired and wireless M-Bus implementations. Table 1 captures these parts and their purposes. en13757 1 2 3 4 5 6

These modes have unidirectional and bidirectional sub modes. unique regional requirements Each European country defines its own requirements best suited to the environment and infrastructure available. This works well for region-specific utility companies but adds additional requirements for suppliers including semiconductor designers, meter manufacturers and software developers. To provide a common platform, the entire solution including hardware and

purpose Basic data communication between meters and collectors Physical layer requirements for wired M-Bus Application layer Physical and Data Link layers for wireless M-Bus Relaying and routing for range enhancement Local bus for short distance wired links

Table 1: summary of parts for en13757 standard The latest version of EN13757 was approved in 2013 with improved (tighter) RF specifications, superseding the previous 2005 version of the standard. In addition to the standards documents, regional organizations also specify the use of wireless M-Bus. One challenging aspect is that each of these regions has unique requirements on top of the standard and may pick specific modes from the standard to suit the needs of their environment. GrDF in France, CIG in Italy and the OMS group are examples of these groups. (We will examine GrDF and CIG requirements in further detail.) modes and frequencies of Wireless m-bus Table 2 shows several wireless modes specified at various frequencies. Modes S, T, C and N are most commonly used with mode N gaining popularity in the 169 MHz band. Modes R and F are less common while modes P and Q are not used today. mode S (Stationary) T (Frequent Transmit) C (Compact) N (Narrowband) R (Frequent Receive) F (Frequent Tx and Rx)

frequency (mhz) 868 868 868 169 868 433

software must be architected to be flexible and modular so it can adapt to the unique regional requirements. Security and radio performance are critical areas for metering applications, which is reflected in the additional requirements specified by these various regions. Let’s consider the example of France and Italy and highlight some of the key features in these regions. France’s GrDF specifies the use of ‘N’ modes at 169MHz, which are narrowband, low data rate modes for efficient use of frequency spectrum. They also specify a broadcast mode to update meters along with advanced security requirements. A highspeed 4GFSK mode is optionally defined to support higher data rates while maintaining a narrow bandwidth 12.5KHz channel. Specifically for the radio performance, improved sensitivity, blocking and selectivity over and above the standard requirenotes Meters send data few times a day Meters send data several times a day Higher data rate version of mode T Long range, narrow band system Collector reads multiple meters on different frequency channels Frequent bidirectional communication

Table 2: Wireless modes at sub-Ghz frequencies

ment are expected with a tight frequency deviation error tolerance of 0.2 percent. CIG in Italy is also based on the N modes of operation in the 169MHz band. Additionally CIG follows the Italian UNI TS 11291-11-4 specification, which requires some changes to the application layer interface and transport layers. The application layer is based on device language message specification / companion specification for energy metering (DLMS/COSEM), and the channel access method is based on ALOHA and LBT. A broadcast window is also open for firmware download purposes. The physical layer requirements are unique as well. To achieve a long range, the maximum transmitted power is +27dBm with the additional requirement of at most 3dB steps from 27dBm to +27dBm. The specification documents provide additional details. The N mode of operation specified in France and Italy requires ultra-fast preamble detection with a very short preamble of 2 bytes. Sub-GHz wireless transceivers such as Silicon Labs’ Si446x EZRadioPRO devices can support these and other Wireless M-Bus specific requirements. The Open Metering Specification (OMS) and Dutch Smart Meter Recommendations DSMR) also have specific rules pertaining to the application layer, use of fields in the packet structure and enhanced security. implementing a solution There are several options available for wireless M-Bus metering solutions, ranging from semiconductor components to software stacks to modules. The core components required for a high-performance wireless MBus solution include a low-energy microcontroller (MCU), a high-performance sub-GHz transceiver that can offload the host processor, and a modular stack architecture, which provides flexibility to support various wireless connectivity requirements. Comprehensive development tools must also be available to design and configure the metering system. Figure 2 provides a high-level comparison of the wireless M-Bus stack and the OSI model, highlighting the fewer layers required by the stack. The stack size can be implemented with less than 32 KB flash depending on the mode and device type, which translates to a lower cost MCU solution based on reduced flash and RAM requirements. The application layer is user-defined and may follow OMS, DSMR, DLMS/COSEM or any other custom application layer as well. | November, 2015 | EP&Dee



The open hardware application layer (HAL) enables low-level hardware configuration for peripherals such as GPIOs or UART baud rates. This type of modular architecture allows maximum flexibility to support a wide variety of devices with a common stack version.


ceiver into a single-chip solution that is ideal for space-constrained wireless designs. It is important for the MCU and radio to support a variety of low power modes such as sleep and standby and have the ability to wake up quickly and process an incoming packet. This is especially important for bat-

radio hardware is optimized at different frequencies and power levels to meet regulatory requirements in Europe including 868 MHz and 169 MHz for wireless M-Bus with a variety of interfaces and debug options to simplify development. conclusion The smart meter market is evolving quickly as highly integrated, ultra-low-power platforms become widely available at costeffective price points. Various countries around the world have set schedules in the near future for the roll out of millions of smart meters. European wireless M-Bus deployments are expected in large numbers with field trials underway in many regions.

Figure 2: comparison of Wireless m-bus stack features and osi model layers For example, Silicon Labs provides a comprehensive platform solution for wireless MBus applications that includes a software stack developed by Stackforce GmBH optimized to run on Silicon Labs’ EFM32 MCUs based on ARM Cortex-M0+, M3 and M4 cores and EZRadioPRO sub-GHz wireless transceivers. The highly integrated, smallform-factor EZR32 wireless MCU platform combines the wireless stack, MCU and trans-

tery-powered meters. Another hardware consideration is support for peripherals and sensor interfaces that can be autonomous to extend battery life. RF frequency matched hardware kits to support 169 MHz and 868 MHz also help during the initial evaluation and debug phase. Figure 3 shows an example of a wireless MBus hardware platform based on Silicon Labs’ EZR32 sub-GHz wireless MCU. The

Ultra-low-power MCUs and high-performance sub-GHz wireless ICs with flexible architectures supporting multiple protocols will lead the way in enabling smart, connected and energy-friendly metering applications that will enable consumers and utility providers to save precious natural resources. ■

Vivek mohan senior product manager, Wireless products, silicon labs Vivek Mohan is a senior product manager for wireless connectivity products including sub-GHz radios in Silicon Labs’ IoT microcontroller and wireless products group. He joined Silicon Labs in 2010 as an applications engineering manager for shortrange wireless products. Prior to Silicon Labs, he held applications engineering and design verification roles for WiFi and Bluetooth wireless SoC products at Marvell Semiconductor. Mr. Mohan holds a Master of Science in electrical engineering from the University of Southern California.

silicon labs

Figure 3: example of Wireless hardware platform optimized for Wireless m-bus applications 16

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in the mix

Correctly mixing the output of RGB LEDs is an art, but can be helped with a demonstration board and a PIC12 processor. Authors: Brian Tompson & Stephen Allen, microchip technology inc.

Graphic artists want to create accurate colour matches to capture their artistic work and reinforce branding consistency. But accurate presentation of colour on different equipment and media still remains a challenge. There are various ways to express colour values, including CMYK, RGB, CIE and HunterLab. Any given colour can be described with three different variables, due to the three different types of cones in the human eye. A popular way of representing colour is with the CIE 1931 XYZ colour space diagram, 18

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where Y is luminance or brightness and the values of X and Z form the chromaticity. Grey and white have the same chromaticity but differ in luminance. The result is a three-dimensional colour space that covers all the colours that can be perceived by the human eye. Red, green and blue LEDs are capable of producing a wide range of colours but achieving individual colours can be difficult as can moving smoothly from one colour to another. However, a microcontroller can be programmed to use a slider to create most of the colours available or it can use the CIE

1931 colour space chromaticity diagram, shown in Figure 1. A property of the diagram is that if you have two colours and connect them in a straight line, by mixing the colours in different amounts, you can create any colour along the line. This is why blue LEDs commonly use a yellow phosphor so they can create white light. When using RGB lighting components to create colours that appear on the chromaticity chart, it confines the achievable colours to a triangle, referred to as “Maxwell’s triangle”, shown in Figure 1. The range of colours


that can be produced is known as a gamut. This is not completely accurate if you are looking at the diagram on a computer screen as that restricts the range to the


modified to include white. It can also be reconfigured for mode two, which involves using a chromaticity chart selector. The board can be powered either through a

When first powered in slider mode, the board cycles through the HSVW colour wheel. After a period of time, the LEDs start blinking to conserve battery power. The slider on the edge of the board can be used to select a colour to display. Figure 3 shows the colour wheel as modified to include white. In this mode, the RA0 and RA1 pins in Figure 2 are configured to work with a capacitive touch slider. This lets a finger press and slide action select different colour values, though limited to one-dimensional colour selection. In mode two, the desired colour is picked from an on-screen chromaticity chart, such as the one in Figure 1. Now the RA0 and RA1 pins are configured as EUSART serial interfaces with the values passed to the board via a USB serial connection. A PIC16F1455 converts the USB messages to a EUSART 9600baud format. The set up in this mode is shown in Figure 4. If a colour is specified that does not fall into the colour gamut of the LEDs, then the function will return an error message and the colour output will not be updated. If the colour is within the colour gamut, then the new colour will be displayed. tuning The resistor values need to be set so that each colour is displayed with the same amount of lumens. For this demonstration, they were calculated at 202立 for red, 325立 for green and 61立 for blue. Each LED was measured using a chroma meter for colour value.

Figure 1: cie 1931 colour space chromaticity diagram. gamut of the monitor. The white spot at the centre is small and the ability to produce clean white light is a good indication that proper colour mixing is being performed. colour mixing Colour mixing can be achieved using a PIC12F1572 processor from Microchip. This device has three 16bit pulse width modulators (PWMs) that allow precise control over each RGB LED to achieve the smooth transition between colours even at low luminosity. Colour mixing software lets the designer specify the colours and the processor performs the necessary calculations. A demonstration board is available to help designers create this using mode one HSVW slider operation. HSV refers to hue, saturation and value and the W indicates that it has been

USB connection, a 3V lithium coin cell or an AAAA battery. Such a board configured as an HSVW slider is shown in Figure 2.

Luminous intensity can also vary due to temperature, and these variations can be quite large depending on the LED type. This needs to be considered in the final application, especially if it is outdoors.

Figure 2: colour mix demonstration board configured as an hsVW slider. | November, 2015 | EP&Dee



The human eye can detect flicker at about 200Hz. Intermodulation can also occur with 50 and 60Hz lighting. It is thus recommended that LED lighting switches at above 200Hz. In the case of the PWM peripherals on the PIC12F1572, the period is well


chromaticity chart. These are converted to RGB values, which are colour-mixed to create the resultant colour. Individual LEDs of red, green and blue colours have their duty cycle or brightness controlled through the PWM peripherals. Each individual PWM has 16 bits

developed in C. The PIC device does the matrix inversion, multiplication and scaling to produce the desired colour. All calculations are done as integers. Scaling is done throughout, so that values will not overflow the long 32bit variable type.

of resolution, allowing for smooth colour transitions even with very low duty cycles. The software is structured such that serial messages are received, and the data are used to call the ColorMix routine. This is computationally intensive and takes about 7.7ms (with 16MHz oscillator clock) to compute the PWM values. If this routine was used to compute continuously changing

hardware configuration The demonstration board is configured and programmed from the factory for operation in slider mode. To operate the board in this mode, the PIC12F1572 must be programed with the RGBSlider software, and the PIC16F1455 must be erased. To operate the board in the chromaticity selector mode, the PIC12F1572 must be programmed with the RGBChroma software, and the PIC16F1455 must be programmed with the RGBChroma USB software.

Figure 3: hsVW slider. above that at which flicker can be detected. A PWM peripheral varies the length of time a particular load is turned on. The ratio of the on time to the PWM period is called the duty cycle and corresponds to the percentage of power that is delivered to the load. Controlling power with a PWM is generally recognised as a precise and efficient method of regulating power output.

Figure 4: colour mix demonstration board configured as a chromaticity chart selector. chromaticity chart The board has been designed to demonstrate a range of colours that appear on the 20

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colours, the update rate would slow to 130Hz, and would degrade the smoothness of the changes. The ColorMix routine was

conclusion With the widespread use of LEDs in digital signage and other advertising applications, achieving exactly the correct colours has become more important as they form part of company brands. This article has aimed to give an understanding of how the colours can be mixed and how the right mix can be calculated using a demonstration board containing PIC12F1572 and PIC16F1455 processors ďż­ microchip technology



The Birth of Synergy:

revolutionary new path to faster embedded mcu system Author: Graeme Clark, Manager, MCU/MPU Solution Marketing, renesas electronics europe

When renesas engineers first began to consider how they would package mcu-based solutions for the internet-of-things (iot) market, they looked closely at the unique challenges this opportunity presented. in applications ranging from factory floor automation to home automation, the opportunities appeared endless. 22

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Clearly developers who could deliver their product to market first would gain a significant advantage, so any solution that shortens development times would offer a powerful advantage. Renesas explored this topic across industries and noticed the profile of their traditional MCU customer was changing. Customers’ engineering teams often came to Renesas, the world’s leading MCU manufacturer, looking to implement a specific requirement. Once the hardware was defined, they would pass the solution onto their software team to develop the application. Generally, hardware designers drove the MCU selection process.

increasing importance of the software engineer’s point of view. At the same time other trends are escalating the pressure on design teams. Increasingly companies are outsourcing all but the core engineering functions and a growing number of firms are finding they can no longer develop new technologies as they have done in the past.

As the IoT market began to emerge, however, roles were changing. The more Renesas interacted with its customers, the more it became clear that software was dominating the MCU requirements. Software developers were now playing a larger role in defining the end solution and what type of MCU would best fit their system requirements.

research, license, integrate, test, and maintain a RTOS, stacks, middleware, and libraries from multiple software vendors. What if they could get everything form one source – their MCU silicon vendor?

So the Renesas team wrestled with how to address this new reality. What were the key values driving customers and how would their priorities impact MCU selection? Clearly any solution targeted at the huge IoT market would have to take into account the

Developers are now increasingly willing to move from in-house development and use external resource and off-the-shelf components. It’s a time-consuming and costly approach to use standard MCU’s and then

To source software from a silicon vendor, developers need assurances. How long will the silicon vendor supply and support the software? Will there be a long term commitment to maintain, upgrade and support the software? Developers generally equate commercial quality with longevity. If the silicon vendor was willing to sell its software as a high quality commercial product, would

that assure embedded system developers? From the developer’s standpoint sourcing the software from an MCU supplier offers numerous advantages. Large silicon vendors have the resources to support the development and maintenance of software over long periods of time. As the silicon manufacturer has a large customer base, the software will be proven over a very large number of customers. Since the silicon vendor only makes money when products go into production, it has the same interest in accelerating the development cycle. Finally, the silicon manufacturer has a vested interest in maintaining

software quality because the success of its software is directly tied to its ability to continue selling MCUs. Renesas wondered what if designers could re-invent the development cycle, so more of their time is spent focusing on the truly innovative aspects of their solution? What if MCU suppliers like Renesas could reduce the amount of time designers spent on the basic core system and, instead, allow developers to increase the amount of time they could spend on application code? What would this new product development cycle look like? | November, 2015 | EP&Dee



In the traditional development cycle designers must grapple with continual updates and constantly changing roadmaps for their RTOS, stacks and tools. What if the MCU supplier offered a platform that took care of the integration of new updates so developers could shrink that portion of their development cycle and spent more time innovating? And what if the MCU supplier offered and supported that software as a high quality commercial product, with APIs that would allow the developer to simply build his or her own applications on top? Ultimately, those questions led to the development of the Renesas Synergy™ Platform, an integrated hardware and software solution optimized for embedded and IoT applications. The Renesas Synergy Platform consists of five main elements: Software, MCUs, Tools and Kits, Solutions, and the Gallery. The Renesas Synergy platform comprises of a


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suite of qualified and verified embedded software, tested to commercial standards and compatible with the Renesas Synergy MCUs. The “Qualified” Renesas Synergy software components are not only optimized and integrated for the Synergy MCUs, they are also rigorously tested for both performance and reliability and is warranted by Renesas to operate as specified in the Industry’s first software datasheet. This is a specification of function and performance that also includes parametric data against which the software is warranted to operate, where appropriate some software components also undergo industry standard compliance testing.

The core software components come in the Renesas Synergy Software Package (SSP). Provided with each Renesas Synergy MCU, the SSP supplies the software components needed for all of the basic core system functions essential in embedded applications. Renesas engineers selected a premium quality RTOS, Express Logic’s ThreadX® as a basis for the SSP, added middleware components from Express Logic’s X-Ware™, and integrated them with MCU device-specific software components including device drivers, middleware, libraries, and a flexible application framework with an API.


The SSP blends the RTOS, middleware and libraries with the low level peripheral functions through a specific framework using an API. This allows the application to access peripherals as easy-to-use, feature-oriented functions. The framework automatically takes care of the details of the RTOS integration. Since the drivers abstract hardware registers by using logically defined values, the API and parameters are consistent across the different series within the Renesas Synergy MCU family. This approach allows the developer to build solutions without spending time learning detailed MCU hardware specifications, specific register definitions, or ThreadX® specifics. Additional software components may be added to the SSP in the future as Qualified Software Add-ons (QSAs). These components may be developed by Renesas and are qualified with the same rigorous standards used for the SSP. Software components developed by 3rd party developers and integrated into the platform are “verified” to work with the Renesas Synergy Platform and are named VSA, or Verified Software Add-on components (VSA’s). These VSA components have been tested for functionality and compatibility with the SSP and are approved by Renesas. The device foundation for the Renesas Synergy Platform is a family of compatible and scalable 32-bit MCUs based on ARM® Cortex®-M CPU cores. Renesas Synergy MCUs were designed from scratch with no legacy requirements, compatibility and scalability were designed in from the start. Every member of the Renesas Synergy MCU family has the same or similar peripherals to minimize the learning curve and maximize re-use of software and offer pin compatibility in every package. Scalability means that peripheral capabilities scale from lower to higher and higher to lower while keeping the same register footprint. The Renesas Synergy MCU family begins with the S1 series, an ultra-low-power MCU based on a 32 MHz Cortex-M0+ core. Three additional members of the Renesas Synergy MCU family, the S3, S5 and S7 series, use Cortex®M4 cores to support operating frequencies that currently range up to 240 MHz.


Renesas’ S3 series MCUs are currently based on a 48 MHz Cortex®-M4 core and serves applications that demand higher levels of integration than the Cortex® M0+-based S1 series. The S5 series MCUs targets more complex IoT applications using a Cortex-M4 core running at 120 MHz, while the Renesas’ S7 series combines a 240 MHz Cortex®-M4 core with a wide array of high-speed peripherals. The entire MCU family offers significant amounts of memory on-chip up to an industry-leading 4 MB of code flash and 640 KB of SRAM on the S7 series. To address the design challenges inherent in the majority of industrial and IoT applications, the Renesas Synergy Platform offers developers a wide array of options to boost security, safety and communications capabilities. The security functions available on Renesas Synergy MCUs enable developers to protect data on the MCU, ensure authenticity of data, and achieve secure product lifetime management. The security peripherals and software libraries support symmetric/ asymmetric cryptography as well as secure key generation and storage to provide a full set of secure services including secure boot and over-the-air firmware updates. Each MCU also supports a long list of safety functions in hardware to support critical applications. IoT applications require extensive communications capabilities and Synergy MCU’s can offer features such as dual Ethernet with IEEE-1588 synchronization, high-speed USB, plus many serial interfaces on chip including

UART, I2C, SPI, IrDA, QSPI, I2S, SDHC/MMC and CAN. For applications closer to the network edge, virtually every Renesas Synergy MCU has an array of analogue interfaces including ADC’s, DAC’s, comparators, as well as a suite of timing functions for motor and industrial control applications. To speed development Renesas engineers have added a number of productivity enhancements to the Renesas Synergy Platform’s supporting tool ecosystem. Renesas Synergy MCUs will be supported by e2 studio, the Eclipse-based Integrated Development Environment (IDE) from Renesas. Adding new, solution-oriented components, such as the ability to view the source code of the entire SSP while debugging, Renesas engineers transformed the environment and e2 studio into a true Integrated Solution Development Environment (ISDE). Developers who want to accelerate their development cycle and take the guesswork out of using a wide variety of technologies in their own industrial and IoT end-products can do so using the Renesas Synergy Platform’s wide array of development kits and design examples. Finally, providing a one-stop shop for all the Renesas software components, the Renesas Synergy Gallery allows users access to all Renesas Synergy Software components and in future will allow enhanced features such as cloud services and the ability to download apps directly to Renesas synergy MCU’s. The fast-moving industrial and IoT markets are forcing developers to re-evaluate their traditional approach to product development. Today’s embedded designs are simply too complex to develop in a step-bystep fashion. The market demands a faster response and shorter time-to-market, as provided by Renesas Synergy. ■

renesas electronics europe | November, 2015 | EP&Dee




Indoor tracking with Beacons

beacons can be used for industrial purposes too

Since Apple launched the iBeacon last year many specialists have worked on the basis that the tiny transmitters will change our lives completely. Because unlike GPS and cellular mobile phone tracking beacons can locate a position within decimeters - even inside a building. They open up countless application scenarios. Now Nordic Semiconductor has also launched a beacon solution.

Bernd Hantsche, Marketing Director Wireless, rutronik elektronische bauelemente Gmbh

In the industrial environment, beacons can be used for applications such as time and position capture, to identify machine operation, including usage capture, or to protect valuable machinery, devices, and materials against theft. If a user requires some operating instructions or a fitter needs an error report, the beacon can supply these too. The tiny transmitters are also used to prevent driverless forklift trucks from colliding. Beacons operate on the transceiver principle: as the name suggests, the beacons take on the role of transmitter. If a receiver, such as a smart phone, a customer-specific handheld device, or a forklift truck fitted with the 26

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corresponding Nordic chip, moves into the sensor’s range, it is able to identify the ID and signal strength of the transmitter.

The beacon simply sends its identity to the smartphone, enabling the data associated with it to be taken from the Cloud via an app or a direct service. The ID can be used to trigger actions that the smart phone then executes. For example, it might open an Internet page, a datasheet or form, or perhaps play a video. For example, a beacon in a fork lift truck can send its ID to an employee’s smart phone or handheld device. This sends the ID on to the server where there is a setting to state whether the employee is authorized to use the fork lift. The server will release the fork


lift for use only if he is. At the same time a record is made - accurate to the second - of who has used the fork lift. reference design for ios7 and android Apple set the basis of the technology. The manufacturer implemented the relevant functions into iOS7 on the basis of Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) standard. Nordic Semiconductor recently presented a reference design for Bluetooth Smart Beacons. The kit consists of a complete hardware and software solution which, together with the Nordic nRFBeacon App, enables a full range of Beacon applications. These may either use Apple’s iBeacon TM standard or be based on a proprietary specification based on Bluetooth Smart. The Bluetooth Smart Beacon Kit is based on the current market leader, the multi-protocol nRF51822 Bluetooth Smart and 2.4GHzSoC from Nordic. The kit contains a beacon which, with a diameter of 20mm, is hardly bigger than the CR1632 button cell battery attached to its rear, supplying the beacon with power for months on end. The relevant “nRF Beacon App” is available for free download in the Google Play Store on Android, while the app for Apple devices is available for manual download on the Nordic Website under RFready-Demo-APPS/nRF-Beacon-for-iOS. The beacon is then immediately ready for operation. The preinstalled setup is an art gallery scenario. Developers can modify this quickly and easily to make the smartphone display, for example, the operating instructions for a machine instead of details on celebrated paintings. The firmware is available from Nordic in source code form. This


makes it possible to construct sample scenarios quickly and easily so that product ideas can be tested. The over-the-air device firmware upgrade service (OTA-DFU) for the nRF51822 allows for updates to the beacon firmware even while in the field. The new version 7.0 of the S110 SoftDevice also enables OTA to make flexible firmware upgrades, something that is not possible on the alternative, static ROM/OTP-based ULP wireless SoCs. So upgrades to stacks and application firmware for the nRF51822 and nRF51422 SoCs can be carried out quickly and easily via the device’s own wireless connection. The OTA-DFU function enables full upgrades to applications as well as protocol stacks and is not restricted to partial upgrades and troubleshooting.

To determine distance, Nordic’s beacon technology uses the S110 SoftDevice Proximity Service by Nordic. This uses the Received Signal Strength Indication (RSSI) values of the nRF51822 transceiver. The RSSI level differs according to the model of smartphone, but despite this the Smart Beacon kit’s tuning function ensures even performance. The beacon also scores with its low produc-

tion costs, low energy consumption and a transmission range of several meters. The wide distribution of Bluetooth Low Energy means that it will be used increasingly in many different areas. [ Panel ] the nrf51822 - flexible multi-talent The nRF51822 is an extremely flexible multiprotocol SoC, designed especially for Bluetooth Low Energy and 2.4 GHz ultra low power wireless applications. It is based on a 32-bit ARM® CortexTM M0 CPU with 256kB or 128kB flash and 16 kB RAM memory. The integral 2.4GHz transceiver supports both Bluetooth Low Energy and 2.4GHz operation. When actively transmitting the energysaving nRF51822 requires only 5.5mA. With its fast data transfer and idle and sleep modes, overall energy consumption is very low. A single power source is sufficient, and developers can choose between a linear single chip voltage regulator (1.8-3.6V), a direct mode (1.8V) and a DC/DC-Buck/Boost converter (2.1-3.6V). During operation this converter can be dynamically controlled, peak current strengths are below 10mA (3V). At Nordic the free Bluetooth Low Energy Protocol for operation in the role of the peripheral communications side is called S110 and as binary it occupies only around 80kB of the memory. At 40kB or 170kB the other flash memories are available for the actual application. Thanks to 31 integrated GPIOs, which are individually assigned to different pins, as well as PWM, ADC and other features, an additional microcontroller is superfluous. This saves space, money and energy ■ Rutronik | November, 2015 | EP&Dee




understanding power factor and the need for power factor correction By cui inc.

Until the era of switching power supplies, Power Factor – and power factor correction – wasn’t a big concern for all but a handful of electrical engineers working with large electric motors, and other, generally high-power and industrial, electric loads. Now, thanks to international legislation governing power factor and harmonic distortion, this subject is high on the list of concerns for many engineers designing systems for global use. Here CUI’s arun ananthampalayam examines the issues surrounding power factor and its implications for engineers. a Quick introduction to power factor Power factor (pf) is the ratio between real power (P) flowing to the load, and the apparent power in the circuit (S): pf = P/S. It is a sinusoidal waveform and therefore expressed as a dimensionless number between -1 and 1. Real power is measured in watts (W) and apparent power in voltamps (VA). For a purely resistive load, the two figures are identical; for a reactive load the arithmetic for the apparent power produces the same figure, that is, the product of the RMS values of voltage

and current. However, to find the actual (real) power delivered to the load, the instantaneous product of voltage and current must be integrated over the complete sine-wave cycle. When current is leading or lagging voltage, the value of that integral will always be less than the value for the in-phase case over the same interval. This reflects the attribute of an inductor or a capacitor to act as an energy store; at various points through the AC cycle the reactive component is either storing energy, or returning it to the system. The apparent power is the vector sum of the true power and the reactive power (Q), measured in reactive volt amperes (var); conventionally, this relationship is expressed as: p = s cosƟ


p2 + Q2 = s2

The relationship is conventionally visualized in a right-angled triangle vector diagram: This is a basic definition and works for pure sinusoids; non-sinusoidal waveforms are more complex, but can be represented by a series of harmonic sinusoids and therefore the same basic principles apply.

Figure 1: an ideal waveform with a power factor of 0 28

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the implications Power supply utilities and generating bodies require their customers to present a load to the power grid that is as near to unity power

Figure 2: traditional triangle vector diagram


factor as possible. The main, but not the only reason, is fiscal. The customer expects to pay for the “real” work done on his premises – in other words, the value of W, above. Electric utilities must provision to deliver the peak voltage and current values in the waveform at any time. A power factor of less than one is effectively an increase in their costs, and one that they pass back to customers by imposing an increased tariff for customers with low power factor loads. Achieving maximum power factor is therefore a “win-win” for all concerned. There are further effects that power generators must contend with that make a unity-power-factor load highly preferable. Rotating plant generating power is more difficult to manage and to keep stable when supplying a low power factor, and there can be heating or overload hazards for transformers and transmission equipment in the supply grid; grid stability is also more difficult to maintain with low-powerfactor loads attached to the system. Low power factor also tends to be associated with other negative attributes for a well-behaved electrical load. Highly-distorted current waveforms drawn from the mains can inject high-order harmonics back into the supply grid.


(for appliances, power tools, and lighting) and the most stringent class, D (for computer monitors and TVs). Similar regulations have been implemented in China, Japan, and Australia. Although the US does not have the same level of legislation as the European Union, the Energy Star program operated by the US Department of Energy, as well as schemes such as 80 PLUS for computer and data-center power systems, are placing increasing emphasis on maintaining a high power factor; calling for a power factor of 0.9 or higher at 100 percent of rated output in the system's power supply. power supplies for electronic systems Even when most electronic equipment was supplied by power supplies that used linear regulation, power factor (and waveform distortion) was often less than ideal, but was rarely addressed for anything other than the largest supplies. The typical, conventional off-line arrangement was that of a transformer followed by a bridge rectifier, feeding a reservoir capacitor. Conduction through the rectifier would take place when the DC voltage on the output line had sagged below the instantaneous value of the transformed AC supply, which could be for the complete cycle at full load, or only at the peak of the AC waveform under light load. Switching power supplies can significantly worsen the situation. The off-line part of the design may not change, still comprising a transformer/rectifier and capacitor, but now feeding one or more switching regulators. The input rectifier continues to generate poorlyshaped current waveforms, but now with the added burden that some of the higher-frequency switching noise from the regulation stage can find its way back into current drawn from the wall socket. Not only does this shift the effective current peak away from that of the voltage waveform in time, it also introduces high-harmonic-content switching waveforms that potentially worsen the distortion of the current waveform. The arrival of this class of supply broadly coincided with the widespread deployment of PCs and other IT products in great numbers. Such trends led directly to today's legislative environment.

Figure 3: poor quality wave form with a lagging power factor of 0.71 Transmission equipment has higher losses at higher frequencies leading to heating problems; if the higher frequencies are present in the load placed directly on the generating plant, they can manifest themselves as destructive vibrations leading to excessive wear on components such as bearings. Current distortion can lead to out-ofbalance currents in the neutral lines of 3-phase distribution networks, which in turn can take the neutral away from ground (voltage) and give rise to a multiplicity of problems. The first attempt to legislate for mains power interference came over 100 years ago, in 1899, to prevent incandescent lamps from flickering, but one of the key regulations came in 1978, with IEC 555-2 requiring power factor correction be incorporated into consumer products. More stringent legislation is being enacted around the world. For example, the EU currently legislates EN61000-3-2 for equipment that implements a power supply with a rating between 75 and 600W. This sets limits to the 39th harmonic for equipment with input currents less than or equal to 16 A per phase. Split into four classes, A, B, C

Figure 4: triangle vector diagram showing the effect of power factor correction | November, 2015 | EP&Dee




power factor correction The solution to excess harmonics is to use power factor correction (PFC). This shapes the input current of the power supply to maximize the real power level from the mains and minimize harmonic distortion. Ideally, the electrical appliance should present a load that resembles a linear load, such as a simple resistor, rather than the reactive load of an uncorrected switching power supply. This corrected waveform minimizes losses as well as interference with other devices being powered from the same source. Compensation for low power factor can be by passive or active devices. The simplest case is highlighted in electric motor applications. Naturally, as wound machines, they are a highly inductive load, and adding capacitors to the supply network has long been standard practice. However, even this case may not be entirely simple. For example, the designer of such a network has to take care not to create unwanted resonant effects. Variable power factor in the load may be accommodated by an adaptive scheme to connect reactive elements as required and in high-power contexts (MW scale)

rotating-machinery solutions can be applied. Passive power factor correction in the form of filtering can be effective, within limits, and has the effect of reducing the higher-order current harmonics that, as noted above, contribute to degraded power factor. Such techniques involve putting a low-pass filter in the input side of the power supply to suppress higher-order harmonic components, and then compensating lead/lag characteristics as with conventional power factor. The downside to a passive PFC design is that large (both by value, and physically) inductors and/or capacitors may be required. Additionally, there are limitations to the input range and power rating when implementing this scheme. Passive PFC circuits are generally able to achieve a power factor in the range of 0.70-0.75. The existence of, and rapid progress in, high-speed, high-current capacity semiconductor switches now make available the option to achieve a power factor up to 0.99. Active power factor correction is the scheme that is most widely applied in present-day designs. A switching pre-regulator stage is placed in the input current path of the supply. That regulator is designed not only to maintain a constant DC voltage to feed the main converter stage of the power supply, but also to draw current from the input in-phase with the incoming AC voltage waveform. And while adding a switching stage does impose some extra losses, and some extra cost, there are compensating savings in the form of smaller passive filtering components, and in the supply's main converter. summary Power factor is on the list of concerns for designers of virtually every device that draws significant power from a mains socket, as well as for engineers in heavy-electrical sectors. The power factor target, based on legislation, plus efficiency, component cost, and volume/board space, needs to be considered. For this reason CUI has designed active power factor correction into the vast majority of its ac-dc power supplies from 100 W and above to help ease implementation and ensure compliance for OEMs ■

Figure 5: examples of passive and active power factor correction circuits

about the author: Arun Ananthampalayam is Product Marketing Engineer at CUI Inc. and an expert in power supply design. CUI inc.

1100 W Front-End Power Supply Series Expanded to Include Dc Input Versions CUI Inc announced an addition to its line of 1100 W front-end power supplies to include dc input versions. The PSD-1100-12 ( -supplies/front-end/psd-1100-series) series delivers high power density and achieves Platinum efficiency in a compact slim line 1U package measuring just 1.575 × 2.145 × 12.65 inches (40 × 54.5 × 321.3 mm). The narrow 54mm profile allows designers to minimize application space compared to larger solutions on the market. The power supply outputs 12Vdc with 5Vdc or 3.3Vdc pin-selectable standby. The PSD-1100-12 is hot pluggable with a dc input connector at the front and an industry standard output connector that integrates dc power and sig30

EP&Dee | November, 2015 |

nal pins at the back. With an input range of 40~72Vdc, the unit is designed to be compatible with CUI’s existing ac input PSA1100-12, ( allowing plug and play operation between the two versions. The series is ideally suited for telecom, server and networking rack mount applications where a mix of ac input and dc input versions are required. The PSD-1100-12 features system communications via I2C/PMBus™ protocol for control and monitoring of the unit. The main 12Vdc output delivers up to 92A with droop current sharing for paralleling multiple units; forced current sharing is optional. For maximum flexibility, the series is available in front-

to-back or back-to-front airflow configurations depending on the application’s cooling requirements. The PSD-1100-12 also offers 60950-1 safety approvals, bears the CE Mark,

and complies with all applicable EMC requirements to accommodate world wide applications. Protections for over-voltage, over-current, over-temperature, and input under-voltage are standard. CUI Inc.



Leuze – Complete cost-effective packaging solutions Leuze’s optical sensors for packaging applications container detection Triggering sensors Leuze PRK 3B/6.42 – the clear solution ■ Works perfect with transparent containers – no time and costs for changing the form and kind of container ■ teach button – easiest adjustment with optimized function reserve and highest sensor performance for your machine. Don`t waste time and money with down time! ■ small and robust – easy to integrate. Space saving design of your machines is no problem ■ the universal solution – for all functions of your machine. Triggering, presence detection or break control – solve all challenges with the same sensor

container detection ■ ■ ■ ■

Triggering sensors Leuze PRK 5 – the economical alternative robust plastic housing for industrial use – safes function of your machine even in a harsh environment integrated metal threads – mounting is easy and saves your time and costs. Mechanical damage will be eliminated compared with plastic threads bright light spot and LED indicator – easy start-up and function check saves time and money during installation and operation The universal economical solution – for all functions of your machine. Triggering, presence detection or break control – solve all challenges with the identical technology

end of tape detection with diffuse sensor Leuze HRTR 3B-XL – the solution for clear on clear labels ■ detects all materials due to a special designed extended light spot – also clear on clear. No expenses for changeover work ■ Adjustment is easy and fast with a visible light spot and LED monitor – all this will bring you a benefit in time and costs ■ no reflector needed – you will get less expenses for mounting and installation

end of tape detection with diffuse sensor Diffuse sensor Leuze FT 5 – the economical alternative ■ Visible light spot and LED indicator – easy start-up and function check ■ Robust plastic housing with integrated metal threads – reduction of maintenance time and costs caused by mechanical damaged sensors ■ flush fit mounting with cable exit at the corner – space saving design is possible without any compromise to the functionality

end of tape detection with diffuse sensor ■ ■ ■ ■

Leuze HRTR 3B - end of roll detection without reflector detects all materials with smallest influence from the surface of the material. No readjustment necessary when the label change. Adjustment is easy and fast with a visible light spot and LED monitor – all this will bring you a benefit in time and costs no reflector needed – you will get less expenses for mounting and installation Sensors with measuring function and output are available from Leuze electronic as well | November, 2015 | EP&Dee




Foil, cardboard, glass - coloured, glossy or transparent? Of course we can detect them! Regardless of what you package – we are sure to have the right sensor! There exists a near endless variety of packaging and packaging materials. Whether foil, cardboard, glass, paper or metal, glossy or structured, opaque or transparent, we have proven sensor solutions for nearly every application. We place great value on usability during our product development. This also includes the greatest possible flexibility for adapting the devices to rapidly growing requirements without any additional adjustment work. When it comes to matters related to packaging, you've come to the right place: ■ Extensive product portfolio especially for the packaging industry ■ Decades of application know-how in the entire packaging process for a wide range of industries ■ Competent specialists are always available to answer your questions reliably detect even transparent media The detection of transparent media is one of the supreme disciplines in sensor technology. With the 3B, 55 and 18B series, we have a whole range of devices in our product line specifically for this purpose.

Quickly detect self-adhesive labels Regardless of shape, regardless of material, regardless of whether matte or glossy surfaces. With our forked sensors of the 61, 63 and 14 series, we offer a perfect product line for every conceivable application.

PRK 18B Retro-reflective photoelectric sensor

NEW: GSU 14D Ultrasonic forked sensor

NEW: KRT 21 Contrast scanner

• Calibrated aBEAM optics completely replace time-consuming alignment • Integrated threads make mounting particularly simple • Precise repeatability thanks to a jitter time of just 40 μs • Nickel-plated metal housing is extremely robust and is also ideally suited for hygiene applications

• Easy Teach function for very simple set up of the sensors • Large mouth width of 4 mm also enables the detection of booklets or foldouts • ALC (Auto Level Control) automatically readjusts the sensitivity and ensures maximum function reserves

• High-strength plastic housing with metal threaded sockets • Scanning range 9 mm • RGB LED light source • Response time 33 µs • Switching frequency 15 kHz • Changeable optics for adapting to the installation conditions

Tel. +40 256-201346 • • 32

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reliably detect arbitrary print marks Arbitrary colors of backgrounds and print marks and, in some cases, very small print marks place special demands on the contrast scanners used, such as KRT 3B, KRT 55 and KRT 21.


Leuze n n n

Optical sensors Sensors for logistic applications Safety at work


ASM n n n

Linear Sensors Angle Sensors Tilt Sensors

GMW n n n n

Contrinex n n

Optical Sensors Inductive Sensors

Selec n n n

PLCs Temperature Controller Timer

Digital panel meters Panel indicators Bus bar isolators Current transformers

Industrial connectors n n n n

Circular connectors M8; M12; M23 Cable and Connectors for Sensors Valve Connectors Distribution Blocks

Special Approvals

Sensor Instruments n n n

Color Sensors True Color Sensors, Spectrometers Gloss Sensors

Kobold n n n

Flowmeters Level Indicators and Switches Pressure Sensors and Switches


IP69K Tel. +40256201346


Label detection on bottles with Leuze FT328 Check your labels application easy and reliable ■ reliable detection for a wide variety of different paper and plastic foil labels. One sensor will probably work with your entire material portfolio. ■ easy adjustment by teach button makes your installation fast, easy and cost efficient. ■ robust stainless steel housing in famous M18 housing design. Together with the Leuze mounting brackets the mounting and installation will be easy and fast.

Additional solutions for your labeling machine We are your partner for special requirements Codereader for 1D- and 2D-codes For all safety functions all around your labeling machines | November, 2015 | EP&Dee



Small current transformers from GMW Highlights CTM 7

Extension of the current transformer series KBR

• •

Smallest current transformer at GMW Installation directly at 3-phase circuit breakers (MCBs) possible ( Distance between phases: 17.5 mm) Quick and easy mounting CTs for phase L1 and L3 are mounted on DIN rail by means of a Snap-On mounting. The CT for phase L2 can be clipped on the other two CTs. Simple connection via secondary terminals “picoMAX®”

• • • •

Dimension CTM 7 Opening: Ø 7,6 mm Width: 27,5 mm Height (CT ): 46,5 mm Depth: 19,0 mm

• • •

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As all our cable power transformer, they are ideal for retrofitting into existing panel’s Simple and safe installation Fast and easy wiring, to the converter with coloured connection cables One-handed"installation by the proven “click” system Dimension KBR 18S Opening:18,5 × 20,3 mm Width: 36,0 mm Height (CT) 51,1 mm and with Snap-on 62,4 mm Depth: 50,0 mm

Tel. +40 256-201346 • •


Sensor Instruments new products Laser displacement sensor with a big working distance and a big working range: L-LAS-LT-800-XXL The laser displacement sensor type L-LAS-LT-800-XXL comes with a working distance of approximately 800mm. At this, the measurement range is around 900mm, the minimum distance from the sensor to the object is roughly 350mm and the maximum sensor to object distance is about 1250mm. Furthermore, the resolution of the laser sensor is 0.05mm and the repeatability around 0.3mm.

Color sensor with an 8-pin M12 connector and three analog outputs and one digital input: SPECTRO-3-COF-SLA The color sensor type SPECTRO-3-COF-SLA comes with an 8-pin M12 connector, three analog outputs (0V … +10V or 4mA … 20mA, depends on the adjustment via the digital serial interface) and one digital input. The spot size at a distance of 100mm is less than 5mm in diameter.

Color-gloss and structure hybrid sensor COAST-85-45°/45° The color-gloss and structure sensor COAST-85-45°/45° consist of two different sensors integrated in one housing. There are two controllers inside the housing and each can be connected to a PC and parameterized individually. Only the lightning unit will be controlled by the color-gloss sensor (power as well as modulated / none modulated) and the changeover from lighting to backlighting will be done from e.g. a PLC. The structure sensor however, will be adjusted to the lighting conditions in using a flexible exposure time. The recommended distance from the sensor to the object is 85mm. Tel. +40 256-201346 • • 34

EP&Dee | November, 2015 |



Leuze signaling devices Clear signals for automation At many critical points in automated systems and installations, the signaling of status information helps to keep productivity and efficiency at a high level. For this purpose, we offer an extensive range of signal columns, single-color and multicolor signal lamps and acoustic signalers – preassembled and individually combinable.

Individually configurable signaling columns For individual signaling with color combinations and/or audible signal, we offer signaling columns in two versions: 40 mm or 70 mm. The signaling columns can be freely configured with regard to the type of mounting, color, number of lights (max. 5) and the optional audible signal. The configurable signaling columns can be mounted horizontally and vertically for 40 mm (E4) and 70 mm (E7).

Individually configurable signaling columns For individual signaling with color combinations and/or audible signal, we offer signaling columns in two versions: 40 mm or 70 mm. The signaling columns can be freely configured with regard to the type of mounting, color, number of lights (max. 5) and the optional audible signal. The configurable signaling columns can be mounted horizontally and vertically for 40 mm (E4) and 70 mm (E7).

Panel-mount modules Single-color and multicolor transducers in an impact-resistant housing, also combined (lamp and sound module) for installation with M22 in 30, 45 and 65 mm diameter.

Muting indicator A wide range of indicators for displaying possible dangers is what makes a safety-at-work system complete.

Multitone + beacon In factory buildings or outdoors, a siren continues to be an important signaling element in addition to visual signals, especially in the case of alarm signals. Here, we offer a selection of standalone devices or siren/lamp combinations with a particularly high degree of protection.

Tel. +40 256-201346 • • | November, 2015 | EP&Dee


PRODUCT NEWS Low leakage power supplies resuscitating medical technology Powerbox, one of Europe’s largest power supply companies, and for more than four decades a leading force in optimizing power solutions for demanding applications, introduces new products in the medical Medline family. The OFM30 30W extra low leakage power supplies are best in class EMC for medical systems in CF class, and its leading OFM225 225W series suitable for BF class expands with additional voltages.

Designed to meet and exceed new safety standards for medical systems and equipment; and based upon an innovative building practice, reducing leakage current below 10µA and EMC, the new Powerbox OFM30 series delivers 30W in continuous operation (peak up to 45W) features Class II double isolation and is UL/IEC60601-1 medically approved. It is like the Holy Grail, trying to achieve low leakage current with low EMC, based on a very innovative design. The OFM30 combines both of them, reaching a leakage current below 10µA and an EMC Class B average margin of 6dB. Combining low power loss switching topology and selected components, the OFM30 series has an efficiency up to 88% whilst, fulfilling the Green Mode requirements of IEC60950-1, CEC Level V, EISA and ErP, at zero load. The OFM30 power consumption is below 0.3W thus assuring the family of its green credentials. The OFM30 output power is rated at 30W continuously, at 50°C and free convection cooling; though it can respond to peak demands for extra power (e.g. pump systems), allowing up to 45W during 10 seconds, with repetition every 100 seconds. In case of over temperature, the OFM30 integrates a unique protection system operating with linearity, reducing the output power down to 50%, securing the payload to proceed to all appropriated processes to avoid treatment disruption. The OFM30 series includes three models: OFM305025 delivering 12V/2.5A (peak 3.75A), the OFM305026 delivering 15V/2.0A (3A peak) and the OFM305028 delivering 24V/1.25A (peak 1.875A). POWERBOx 36

EP&Dee | November, 2015 |

ACTIVE COMPONENTS Silicon Labs Expands Digital Isolation Portfolio with Robust 10 kV Surge Protection Silicon Labs introduced a new family of multi-channel digital isolators featuring a high-voltage isolation barrier designed to withstand 10kV surge hits. Based on Silicon Labs’ proprietary capacitive isolation technology, the new Si86xxxT digital isolator family provides robust protection against secondary lightning strikes and increases system reliability in a wide range of demanding industrial applications. Silicon Labs’ Si86xxxT digital isolator family delivers the industry’s fastest, most accurate timing specifications, highest noise immunity and reliability, lowest electromagnetic noise emissions and longest lifetimes under high-voltage conditions. The Si86xxxT digital isolators are ideal for applications that must withstand a 10 kV hit such as microinverters, base station power supplies, process manufacturing equipment, motor controls and drives, industrial uninterruptible power supplies, metering equipment and battery management systems for electric vehicles.

Developers of industrial applications expect reinforced isolation products to provide fail-safe protection from secondary lightning strikes, especially in applications where equipment is installed outdoors and where exposed cables or wires are vulnerable to light-

ning. In addition to requiring surge ratings of up to 10 kV, industrial equipment developers also demand isolation products with fast timing, high noise immunity, long lifetimes at high voltages, and a wide VDD and temperature range. SILICON LABS

Antenova announces three new-style antennas: flexible dual-band FPC antennas for Wi-Fi and ISM Antenova Ltd, manufacturer of antennas and RF antenna modules for M2M and the Internet of Things, is announcing three new flexible FPC antennas for applications in industrial and consumer electronics. Two of the antennas, named Dromus and Amoris are high performance dual band Wi-Fi antennas operating on the 2.4-2.5GHz and 4.9-5.9GHz wireless bands, including Wi-Fi 802.11a/b/g /j/n/ac. They are suitable for access points, portable electronics, PC cards, games consoles, set-top boxes, network devices, and wearable technology. They are made to different dimensions, so that electronics manufacturers can select the best fit and performance for their wireless device. The third antenna, named Montana operates in the ISM bands of 863870MHz and 902-928MHz. This antenna is for use in industry, remote sensors, smart metering, medical devices, monitoring equipment, lighting, security and automotive applications. The flexible FPC antennas are each just 0.15mm thick, and are supplied

with a peel-back self-adhesive area to fix them inside a small electronic device, in various configurations. They are supplied complete with a cable and a connector to attach them to the underside covering or housing of a manufacturer’s electronic product. Each antenna weighs less than 0.5g.




Intersil Introduces High Efficiency, Highly Integrated 8A and 3A Synchronous Buck Regulators Intersil Corporation, a leading provider of innovative power management and precision analog solutions, today announced five new highly integrated synchronous buck regulators that step-down 5V rails to point-of-load (POL) inputs as low as 0.6V for FPGAs, DSPs and microprocessors. The feature-rich ISL8018 delivers up to 8A of continuous output current from a 2.7V to 5.5V input supply, while offering up to 97% efficiency and higher integration than competitive devices. The 2 × 2mm ISL8003x family of devices delivers up to 3A of continuous output current from a 2.7V to 5.5V input supply and offers up to 95% peak efficiency for delivering general POL conversions in telecom, cloud computing, industrial, instrumentation and medical equipment.

The ISL8018 provides an innovative SYNCIN and SYNCOUT feature that connects and synchronizes multiple regulators at the same switching frequency in a master/slave configuration using a phase shifting time delay. This prevents ON time overlapping and reduces RMS current, ripple and input capacitance requirements to improve EMI and efficiency. With the ISL8018’s VSET feature, the voltage output margining can be set at ±10% to compensate for output voltage IR drop. The ISET feature provides programmable output current limits to support 8A, 5A and 3A applications. This allows customers to leverage one design with smaller inductors for reduced costs and board area. In addition, the ISL8018’s programmable switching frequency from 500kHz up to 4MHz enables the use of smaller passive components for faster transient response and further board space savings. The ISL80030, ISL80030A, ISL80031, and ISL80031A are pin-compatible and integrate very low RDS(ON) high-side PMOS and lowside NMOS MOSFETs, which reduces external component count and power losses. With lower die temperatures, these buck regulators allow the system to operate without cooling fans or heatsinks and still deliver a continuous 3A to the load, significantly increasing reliability. They also offer internal compensation, which eliminates additional external components to reduce design complexity. The complete converter occupies less than 64mm2 of board space. And the ISL80031 and ISL80031A offer a light load mode to improve efficiency over all load currents when the system switches to a low power state. INTERSIL

IDT Teams Up With Digi-Key Electronics for Contest to Create Wirelessly Powered Devices Integrated Device Technology, Inc.® (IDT®) and Digi-Key Electronics announced a new contest that seeks the most innovative use of IDT’s wireless power technology. The contest asks electronics experts and tinkerers alike to proffer creative ways to incorporate wireless charging capabilities into products by using IDT’s 5W kits. Sponsored by Digi-Key Electronics, a leading global distributor of electronic components, the theme of the contest is, “Power Without Borders.” Judges will be looking for designs that demonstrate the advantages wireless charging systems offer, such as convenience, the ability to develop a waterproof charging system, or the elimination of failureprone charging contacts. The winner of the global competition will receive a Samsung Galaxy

Note 5 or Galaxy S6 edge+, plus a Gear S2 Smart Watch; second and third place winners also will receive Samsung products featuring wireless charging enabled by IDT chips. The contest will be hosted by the world’s largest hardware creation community, Contest details can

be found, and submissions entered, at WirelessPower. The deadline for submitting designs is Dec. 31, and the winners will be announced Feb. 15, 2016. IDT

Murata launches 93% efficient 160 Watt conduction cooled AC/DC supply for use in cellular base stations Murata announced the MVAD160 series of 160 Watt conduction cooled AC/DC power supplies. Packaged in an industry standard 2 × 4 inch (50.8 × 101.6 × 38.1 mm) format they are designed for use in next-generation high-speed compact base station equipment. Accommodating the universal AC input of 85 – 264 VAC, the series comprises three output models providing the nominal main output (V1) of +12, +24 or +48VDC with or without an auxiliary 5VDC/0.1A secondary (V2) output. Energy efficiency is typically in the range of 92 to 93% and the series offers a no-load power consumption of less than 0.3Watt. Safety and control features include overcurrent and overvoltage protection together with remote control using a negative logic signal. Designed for use in cellular

infrastructure equipment such as small cell base stations that need to endure a wide range of outdoor operating temperatures, the MVAD160 can operate across the range of -40 to +85 degrees C, and also suitable for medical or industrial applications with extended

ambient temperature range or where fanless operation at limited physical space is required. The series complies with the internationally recognized safety approval standards IEC 60950 and IEC 60601 that certify use in IT, industrial, medical and healthcare equipment. MURATA | November, 2015 | EP&Dee



The Lighting Energy saved is money saved As a distributor, we are proud to offer a wide range of products that will perform with your application. COMPEC understands how important it is to keep your buildings and production facilities running as efficiently as possible. If you wish to save as much energy and ongoing maintenance as possible, we have also included a cross section of our current LED lighting range. If you do not find what you need here, please visit: for many more lamps, components and all our fittings.

top brands lighting

lighting featured products led ceilinG battens

• LED ANTI-CORROSIVE FITTING With ABS base, polycarbonate controller, stainless steel clips supplied with suspension eyes and stainless steel mounting bracket. Consumes up to 40% less energy than traditional light fittings, while reducing maintenance and carbon emissions. Ideal applications of this non-corrosive LED luminaire are industrial areas, garages and workshops. • • • •

IP65 rated Colour temperature 5500K Complete with LED driver Average LED life 30,000 hours

RS Stock No.


795-9788 795-9791

2 × 24W 2 × 40W


EP&Dee | November, 2015 |


• CORELINE WATERPROOF LED LUMINAIRE Provides quality of light and substantial energy and maintenance savings. Can be used to replace conventional waterproof luminaires with fluorescent lamps. Ideal for applications in warehouses, general lighting and parking areas. • • • • • •

Colour temperature 4000K Lifetime 50,000 hours Direct replacement to traditional waterproof luminaires Energy savings of up to 50% compared to conventional CFL luminaires Reliable LED technology, maintenance ree Sleek design

RS Stock No.


Mfr. Part No.


led doWnliGhters & tasK liGhtinG

• PUNCTOLED IP65 DIMMABLE DOWNLIGHT Recessed ceiling luminaire featuring high power LEDs. A dimmable external control unit (included) ensures efficient operation and an especially long lifetime. Delivers great energy savings compared to standard halogen downlights. • • • • • • • •

Water jet protection to IP65 Extremely low profile Beam angle 90° Colour temperature 3000K Lifetime: up to 50,000 hours Dimmable Very low installation depth Up to 80 % energy savings compared to standard luminaires

RS Stock No.


8276353 8276359

10W 2 × 5.5W

• 12W LED WORK LIGHT This LED work light comes with an LED driver built-in to the lamp base. This LED light can be positioned in various lighting angles, 25°, 60° and 80°, and is ideal in applications such as semiconductors manufacturing equipment and clean rooms. • • • •

Reinforced lens for high resistance Supplied with 1.8 metre cord with UK plug Long service life up to 40,000 hours Temperature range -30° to +60°C

RS Stock No.


777-8016 777-8025 777-8028

Pivoting arm Arm length 430mm Arm length 800mm | November, 2015 | EP&Dee



led bulKhead liGhts

• INDOOR SENSOR CEILING / WALL ROUND LED LIGHT Uses intelligent sensor technology and responds to movements and light levels. With a high-frequency sensor, hidden out of view inside the light, with 360° angle coverage and electronic reach settings from 3 to 8m. • 770 lumens • 50,000 hours average life • 2 to 2000 lx brightness response

RS Stock No.


851-2908 851-2905

11W cool white 11W warm white

• SOLAR WALL LIGHT With its contemporary style and stainless steel finish, The Canterbury solar wall light charges up by day via the micro solar panel. • • • •

Up to 10 hours run time Automatically turns on at dusk and off at dawn No wiring required IP44 waterproofing

RS Stock No.



IP44 waterproofing

led emerGencY liGhtinG

• LED MAINTAINED EMERGENCY EXIT SIGNS - SUSPENDED Features aluminium alloy body with white trim and double sided acrylic blade. Ideal applications are in commercial, industrial and retail. • Maintained (M3) • Supplied with 4W low power consumption LED

RS Stock No.


795-9757 795-9750

Suspended “Down” Suspended “Left/Right”


EP&Dee | November, 2015 |


• SLIM LED EMERGENCY EXIT SIGNS Polycarbonate body, with 20mm cable entries BESA box fixings. Ideal applications of this LED emergency exit sign are in commercial, industrial and retail. • Switchable maintained (M3) • Supplied with legend arrow down

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led torches & headlamps

• PROSAFE LED RECHARGEABLE SPOTLIGHT A very handy useful LED lamp that rests on its own substantial rubberised, grippy base. The LED lamp head can rotate making this a very useful, stable lamp for hands free operation and comfortable to hold to use as a searchlight. • CREE 160 lumen LED • Smooth dimming control

RS Stock No.


• PIXA ATEX LED HEAD TORCHES A robust, versatile range of IP67 ATEX approved headlamps. Brightness of the headlamp does not decrease gradually as the batteries are drained. Head or helmet mount, very durable. • Pixa 1 - up to 15m, 60lm • Pixa 2 - up to 55m, 80lm • Pixa 3 - up to 90m, 100lm

RS Stock No.


869-7463 869-7472 869-7475

Pixa 1 20-60lm Pixa 2 20-80lm Pixa 3 20-60-100lm

Do not hesitate to ask for any additional information by email:, phone: 0213 046 233, fax: 0213 046 234 or access We offer you continuous improved services that can help you with your production facilities. An important part of our services refers to delivery. Now the lead time has become lower thus the delivery faster as in you can have now the products you need in 24 hours delivered directly to your door. No order is too small or less important for us! Author: mihaela sârbu aurocon compec | November, 2015 | EP&Dee


EP&Dee no 9  

Electronics Products & Design - Eastern Europe - The November issue

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