The creators of the Pi-oT module returned to Kickstarter and launched a new module based on ESP32. Thanks to this, users familiar with Arduino programming or preferring lighter architecture can enjoy all the advantages of the IoT module for enterprises.

Pi-oT ESP module key features and specification:

  • Board – ESP32-DevKitC-D32 based on ESP32-WROOM-D32 module with ESP32 dual-core processor, 32Mbit SPI flash
  • Relays – 4x Panasonic SPDT relays controlled via GPIO pins
  • Screws terminals for
    • Relay outputs
    • 6x analog inputs configurable as GPIO if needed
    • 2x analog outputs configurable as GPIO if needed
    • 2x GPIO
    • 5V input, 3.3V, and GND
  • Power Supply – 5V input via terminal or Micro USB port?; 5V circuitry protection
  • Dimensions – DIN rail enclosure

Source: https://www.cnx-software.com/2020/05/04/pi-ot-esp-module-leverages-esp32-screw-terminals-iot-automation/

The ESP Module is a microcontroller based IoT Module which offers the same great features as our Pi-oT Module, but based off on an ESP32 platform. The ESP Module is powered by an ESP32 DEVKITC-32D microcontroller which is included in each reward.

Source: https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/pi-ot/esp-module

Additionally 10 GPIO pins are routed to the housing terminals to utilize the power of ESP32 in a wide range of applications. The flexibility of the ESP32s system allows easy configuration of 6 of these pins as analogue inputs and 2 as analogue outputs.

Industrial use of LoRa & ESP32-based solutions

One of industrial IoT devices, supporting LoRa wireless technology is ESP32 based eModGATE from TECHBASE. Economical, ESP32-based solution can serve as an end-point in any installation or works well as a gateway, gathering data from scattered sensor mesh across the installation. For more information and also Raspberry Pi based solutions check Industrial IoT Shop with all the configuration options for eModGATE.

eModGATE with ESP32

Toit was founded in 2018 by a team of developers who built V8 for Chrome on Google in order to build a generic firmware for IoT devices that will replace the traditional development process. They offer a completely new feature set and a new Python-like programming language developed specifically for IoT. Toit is a high-level object-oriented language with a simple, easy-to-use Python-like syntax that is 20 times faster than MicroPython.

Key Features for Toit IoT Platform:

  • Light and efficient multitasking capabilities on an MCU, enabling complex IoT solutions to work on battery-powered devices.
  • A new high-level object-oriented programming language.
  • A publicly available gRPC API to have full control over your devices.
  • An MQTT-like PubSub API for communicating with other devices over the cloud.
  • Cellular connectivity with NB-IoT / CAT M-1 and out-of-the-box Wi-Fi support
    CLI and SDK support on Windows, macOS, and Linux.
  • VS Code extension for seamless integration with their platform, allowing for faster development.
  • No subscription or provisioning fees

Source: https://www.cnx-software.com/2021/08/06/iot-development-platform-comparision-toit-balena-particle-microsoft-azure-iot/

A look into the features of Toit programming language

Unlike other programming languages used for embedded systems, Toit is a language that was developed solely for IoT. So, it is a dedicated language for IoT that allows for better power management which is important for battery-based systems. Toit features an automatic memory management system which helps to avoid crashes. The new language also comes with a garbage collector, aiding the memory management system. Features like these are not available in traditional programming languages and might be a challenge implementing those using languages like C.

“With Toit, we wanted to create a high-level language that would avoid the limitations of the existing languages used in IoT development. On top of this, the Toit language had to be intuitive to learn and safe to use.” says the Toit team. The syntax of Toit is modern, simple and quite similar to Python. So, a Python developer can easily learn this new language within a few hours and deploy their first application within 15 minutes. Toit is an indentation based language just like Python and has no braces or semicolons. The files are saved with ‘.toit’ extensions and have a VS code language extension for a richer developing experience. So once you start developing with the Toit platform, there’s no coming back.

Source: https://opencloudware.com/toit-platform-redefines-the-way-we-implement-iot-applications/

Industrial use of ESP32-based solutions

One of industrial IoT devices, supporting Espressif’s ESP32 technology is eModGATE from TECHBASE. Economical, ESP32-based solution can serve as an end-point in any installation or works well as a gateway, gathering data from scattered sensor mesh across the installation. For more information and also Raspberry Pi based solutions check Industrial IoT Shop with all the configuration options for eModGATE.

eModGATE with ESP32

Microsoft announced Windows 11 with new system requirements, including hardware with a TPM 2.0 chip. Altho not all computers, laptops, and tablets come with Trusted Platform Module (TPM), which can be a problem, especially if you need version 2.0.

According to a tweet from Shen Ye, Senior Director, Global Head of HTC Hardware Products, the price of TPM 2.0 has quadrupled, so while Windows 11 isn’t officially available yet, Microsoft has it legitimate, and the name is security.

Securing devices with Infineon industrial grade TPM

Infineon Technologies AG has unveiled a new security chip that defines the first TPM (Trusted Platform Module), designed specifically for industrial applications such as industrial computers, servers, industrial controllers and edge gates. The module protects confidential data in connected devices and reduces the risk of leakage of this information due to attacks, e.g. hackers.

The OPTIGA TPM SLM 9670 module protects the integrity of industrial systems and the identity of users using them. The system controls access to sensitive data at key locations in industrial environments, such as an automated factory. It also protects the cloud interface if the network uses one. The security system fully meets the TPM 2.0 standard developed by the Trusted Computing Group and is certified by an independent test laboratory in accordance with the criteria contained in this standard. The new module is meticulously controlled and certified by Infineon. Thanks to its use, it is possible to shorten the time of designing and introducing the device to the market, thanks to the ready security solution in the system.

The TPM system has a lifetime declared as 20 years. It allows programmers to perform firmware updates, which in turn enables them to meet the long-term security requirements in rapidly changing industrial environments. In this way, it can also reduce maintenance costs of industrial equipment thanks to secured remote software updates. The TPM chip will be available in serial production in the second half of 2019.

TPM 2.0 Key Features

  • Random Number Generator (RNG) according to NIST SP800-90A
  • TPM FW update functionality installed
  • 6962 Bytes of free NV memory
  • Full personalization with Endorsement Key (EK) and EK certificate
  • Up to 3 keys in the volatile memory
  • Up to 7 keys in the NV memory
  • Up to 8 NV counters
  • Support of various cryptographic algorithms:
    • RSA-1024 and RSA-2048
    • SHA-1 and SHA-256
    • ECC NIST P256
    • ECC BN256

Security chip implementation in Industrial IoT devices

With knowledge of latest Industrial IoT security measures, the choice of proper end-point conroller or gateway is much easier than you think. Some manufacturers can implement TPM 2.0 security chip in production process, to allow users to generate certification keys after purchase, maximizing security of their installations. TECHBASE offers wide range of solutions, optionally aided with TPM system.

For example, ESP-32 based solution, Moduino X series and eModGATE series products offer the support for such security measures. Read more in Industrial IoT Ecosystem brochure, to understand the importance of reliable and secure hardware for Industrial IoT.

ZigBee Mesh used in end-point IoT devices

ZigBee mesh‚s usefulness for IoT is partly due to the fact that it is an open standard. The same products can be used all over the world, which gives customers a large selection of available option. The high competition between products and producers means that the created solutions are innovative, characterized by high quality and give customers a considerable choice. Many suppliers of cooperating elements of this ecosystem mean that they are not limited to any specific brands or specific semiconductor manufacturers.

ZigBee Mesh. Source: ZigBee Alliance
ZigBee Mesh. Source: ZigBee Alliance

Compatibility is also promoted, as ZigBee Mesh 3.0 brings all the various ZigBee environments to a single, unified standard. Over the years, ZigBee has covered applications ranging from industrial to business to home, which has led to the development of separate service standards. ZigBee 3.0 collects all these various applications under one umbrella. This eliminates the need for mediation bridges between different sets of ZigBee supporting devices. All of them will be able to communicate directly, regardless of type.

Competitiveness of ZigBee based solutions

With a maximum data bandwidth of 250 kbps at 2.4 GHz, ZigBee is slower than other popular wireless standards such as Wi-Fi or Bluetooth, but it doesn’t matter in typical sensor applications. ZigBee Mesh is designed to send small data packets at relatively long intervals, which is usually sufficient to collect data from temperature sensors, safety sensors, air quality monitoring systems and similar subsystems. In the meantime, the low bandwidth affects the low power needed for the system to work, so that ZigBee nodes can usually work for many years on a single AAA battery.

ZigBee Power Consumption. Source: ZigBee Alliance
ZigBee Power Consumption. Source: ZigBee Alliance

With low power consumption, ZigBee supporting products typically have a short transmission range – typically from 10 to 15 meters, and the signal they emit is easily disturbed by obstacles on the route, or changes in the environment. However, the beauty of ZigBee devices lies in their work as part of a lattice topology network, where each of them transmits signals between themselves over a total of longer distances. The grid topology also means that damage to a single device will not stop the entire network, as communication can simply be redirected.

Data security via ZigBee wireless technology

ZigBee 3.0 has introduced an advanced set of tools that allows designers to introduce reliable networks with a balanced security policy and ease of installation. Available features will be constantly updated to respond to emerging threats. The security solution used is based on the ZigBee PRO grating protocol, which was originally created for the ZigBee Smart Energy profile. It is currently used by hundreds of millions of media consumption meters around the world, without detecting any security holes.

New features include device-unique authentication, when connecting to the mesh network, updating of keys used during work, secure software update via wireless network and data encryption at the logical layer of the link.

Industrial use of ZigBee Mesh

One of industrial IoT devices, supporting ZigBee Mesh technology is eModGATE from TECHBASE. Economical, ESP32-based solution can serve as an end-point in any installation or works well as a gateway, gathering data from scattered sensor mesh across the installation. For more information check Industrial IoT Shop with all the configuration options for eModGATE, including ZigBee modem.

Espressif Systems and Amazon recently announced the ESP32-PICO-V3-ZERO Alexa Connect Kit (ACK) module, which provides support for features such as out-of-the-box connectivity to the cloud service ACK, Alexa control, „seamless setup”, and Amazon Dash completion for connected devices.

This new module is as much as 50% lower in cost.

Source: https://developer.amazon.com/en-US/blogs/alexa/device-makers/2020/07/Introducing-the-New-Alexa-Connect-Kit-Module-with-Espressif-Chipset
ESP32-PICO-V3-ZERO

How Alexa Connect Kit Works

With Alexa Connect Kit, you can make nearly any device with power into an Alexa-compatible smart device your customers will love, all at a fixed per-device cost. You simply integrate an Amazon-managed ACK module into your device, connect it to your device’s microcontroller (MCU) over a serial interface, and add interface code to your device’s firmware to interpret control messages from the ACK module. The ACK module adds Wi-Fi, Bluetooth LE, and all the software needed for Alexa control, Frustration Free Setup, security, and log and metric collection – managed and updated by Amazon. For your customers, products built with ACK include Alexa control through voice and the Alexa app, and the option to support Amazon Dash Replenishment. For developers, ACK enables you to connect your devices to Alexa without the need to operate a cloud, create and maintain an Alexa skill, develop a companion app, or deal with IoT firmware integration. With an ACK module on your device, you can focus on building great hardware.

Source: https://developer.amazon.com/en-US/blogs/alexa/device-makers/2020/07/Introducing-the-New-Alexa-Connect-Kit-Module-with-Espressif-Chipset

Industrial use of LoRa & ESP32-based solutions

One of industrial IoT devices, supporting LoRa wireless technology is ESP32 based eModGATE from TECHBASE. Economical, ESP32-based solution can serve as an end-point in any installation or works well as a gateway, gathering data from scattered sensor mesh across the installation. For more information and also Raspberry Pi based solutions check Industrial IoT Shop with all the configuration options for eModGATE.

eModGATE with ESP32

The M5Stack Core2 is an ESP32 IoT development kit with a 2-inch touchscreen, motion sensor, microphone and battery. The hardware is chosen by Amazon Web Services, with a few little things like adding secure components and the yellow colour that creates „AWS IoT EduKit” hardware and software solutions designed to“learn how to build IoT applications using AWS services through a prescriptive learning program”.

M5Stack Core2 for AWS IoT EduKit specifications:

  • SoC – Espressif ESP32-D0WDQ6-V3 dual-core Xtensa LX6 processor clocked at up to 240MHz with 520KB SRAM, Wi-Fi, and dual-mode Bluetooth connectivity
  • External Memory – 8MB PSRAM
  • Storage – 16MB flash storage, MicroSD card slot up to 16GB
  • Display – 2-inch IPS LCD screen with 320×240 resolution (ILI9342C driver), and touchscreen support (via FT6336U controller)
  • Audio – Built-in 1W speaker, SPM1423 PDM microphone, I2S codec, and power amplifier
  • Antenna – 2.4GHz 3D antenna
  • USB – 1x USB Type-C port for power and programming via CP2104 chip
  • Sensors – 6-axis IMU (MPU6886)
  • Expansion – 1x Grove connector with I2C, GPIO and UART, M-Bus socket
  • Security – ATECC608A Trust&GO secure element
  • Misc – Power LED, power button, reset button, 3x touch buttons, vibration motor, RTC, 10x RGB LEDs
  • Power Supply
    • Input Voltage – 5V @ 500mA
    • AXP192 PMU
    • SY7088 DC-DC Boost
    • 500 mAh/3.7V Lithium Battery
  • Dimensions – 54 x 54 x 24 mm (Plastic case)
  • Weight – 101 grams
  • Temperature Range – 0°C to 40°C

Source: https://www.cnx-software.com/2020/12/29/aws-iot-edukit-leverages-m5stack-core2-esp32-hardware/

A look into the features of Toit programming language

Unlike other programming languages used for embedded systems, Toit is a language that was developed solely for IoT. So, it is a dedicated language for IoT that allows for better power management which is important for battery-based systems. Toit features an automatic memory management system which helps to avoid crashes. The new language also comes with a garbage collector, aiding the memory management system. Features like these are not available in traditional programming languages and might be a challenge implementing those using languages like C.

“With Toit, we wanted to create a high-level language that would avoid the limitations of the existing languages used in IoT development. On top of this, the Toit language had to be intuitive to learn and safe to use.” says the Toit team. The syntax of Toit is modern, simple and quite similar to Python. So, a Python developer can easily learn this new language within a few hours and deploy their first application within 15 minutes. Toit is an indentation based language just like Python and has no braces or semicolons. The files are saved with ‘.toit’ extensions and have a VS code language extension for a richer developing experience. So once you start developing with the Toit platform, there’s no coming back.

Source: https://opencloudware.com/toit-platform-redefines-the-way-we-implement-iot-applications/

Industrial use of ESP32-based solutions

One of industrial IoT devices, supporting Espressif’s ESP32 technology is eModGATE from TECHBASE. Economical, ESP32-based solution can serve as an end-point in any installation or works well as a gateway, gathering data from scattered sensor mesh across the installation. For more information and also Raspberry Pi based solutions check Industrial IoT Shop with all the configuration options for eModGATE.

eModGATE with ESP32

Toit was founded in 2018 by a team of developers who built V8 for Chrome on Google in order to build a generic firmware for IoT devices that will replace the traditional development process. They offer a completely new feature set and a new Python-like programming language developed specifically for IoT. Toit is a high-level object-oriented language with a simple, easy-to-use Python-like syntax that is 20 times faster than MicroPython.

Key Features for Toit IoT Platform:

  • Light and efficient multitasking capabilities on an MCU, enabling complex IoT solutions to work on battery-powered devices.
  • A new high-level object-oriented programming language.
  • A publicly available gRPC API to have full control over your devices.
  • An MQTT-like PubSub API for communicating with other devices over the cloud.
  • Cellular connectivity with NB-IoT / CAT M-1 and out-of-the-box Wi-Fi support
    CLI and SDK support on Windows, macOS, and Linux.
  • VS Code extension for seamless integration with their platform, allowing for faster development.
  • No subscription or provisioning fees

Source: https://www.cnx-software.com/2021/08/06/iot-development-platform-comparision-toit-balena-particle-microsoft-azure-iot/

A look into the features of Toit programming language

Unlike other programming languages used for embedded systems, Toit is a language that was developed solely for IoT. So, it is a dedicated language for IoT that allows for better power management which is important for battery-based systems. Toit features an automatic memory management system which helps to avoid crashes. The new language also comes with a garbage collector, aiding the memory management system. Features like these are not available in traditional programming languages and might be a challenge implementing those using languages like C.

“With Toit, we wanted to create a high-level language that would avoid the limitations of the existing languages used in IoT development. On top of this, the Toit language had to be intuitive to learn and safe to use.” says the Toit team. The syntax of Toit is modern, simple and quite similar to Python. So, a Python developer can easily learn this new language within a few hours and deploy their first application within 15 minutes. Toit is an indentation based language just like Python and has no braces or semicolons. The files are saved with ‘.toit’ extensions and have a VS code language extension for a richer developing experience. So once you start developing with the Toit platform, there’s no coming back.

Source: https://opencloudware.com/toit-platform-redefines-the-way-we-implement-iot-applications/

Industrial use of ESP32-based solutions

One of industrial IoT devices, supporting Espressif’s ESP32 technology is eModGATE from TECHBASE. Economical, ESP32-based solution can serve as an end-point in any installation or works well as a gateway, gathering data from scattered sensor mesh across the installation. For more information and also Raspberry Pi based solutions check Industrial IoT Shop with all the configuration options for eModGATE.

eModGATE with ESP32

Amazon‚s website has introduced a Software Audio Front End (AFE) Development Kit section that lists software algorithms that optimize sound detection in noisy environments. The latest addition is the Amazon Alexa recently certified Espressif audio front end or ESP AFE algorithm for shorts.

The Espressif AFE algorithm was certified by Amazon after achieving excellent performance in long-range Alexa testing. In most cases, in low signal-to-noise scenarios, the wakeup rate reaches 100% and the speech recognition rate exceeds 90%.

Amazon-Qualified “Software Audio Front-End” Solution

Low resource consumption

Espressif’s AFE algorithms are optimized, as they take advantage of Espressif’s AI accelerator that is available in the ESP32-S3 SoC. Espressif’s AFE algorithms consume just 12-20% of CPU and around 460 KB of memory, including 220 KB of internal memory and 240 KB of external memory. This provides sufficient headroom for customer applications on the ESP32-S3 SoC.

Espressif’s AFE algorithms offer an easy and intuitive API for customer applications, so that their performance can change as dynamically as it is required. The distance between the two microphones can be between 20-80 mm, which allows considerable flexibility for the hardware design of developers’ end-products.

Source: https://www.espressif.com/en/solutions/audio-solutions/esp-afe

Industrial use of ESP32-based solutions

One of industrial IoT devices, supporting Espressif’s ESP32 technology is eModGATE from TECHBASE. Economical, ESP32-based solution can serve as an end-point in any installation or works well as a gateway, gathering data from scattered sensor mesh across the installation. For more information and also Raspberry Pi based solutions check Industrial IoT Shop with all the configuration options for eModGATE.

eModGATE with ESP32

Microsoft announced Windows 11 with new system requirements, including hardware with a TPM 2.0 chip. Altho not all computers, laptops, and tablets come with Trusted Platform Module (TPM), which can be a problem, especially if you need version 2.0.

According to a tweet from Shen Ye, Senior Director, Global Head of HTC Hardware Products, the price of TPM 2.0 has quadrupled, so while Windows 11 isn’t officially available yet, Microsoft has it legitimate, and the name is security.

Securing devices with Infineon industrial grade TPM

Infineon Technologies AG has unveiled a new security chip that defines the first TPM (Trusted Platform Module), designed specifically for industrial applications such as industrial computers, servers, industrial controllers and edge gates. The module protects confidential data in connected devices and reduces the risk of leakage of this information due to attacks, e.g. hackers.

The OPTIGA TPM SLM 9670 module protects the integrity of industrial systems and the identity of users using them. The system controls access to sensitive data at key locations in industrial environments, such as an automated factory. It also protects the cloud interface if the network uses one. The security system fully meets the TPM 2.0 standard developed by the Trusted Computing Group and is certified by an independent test laboratory in accordance with the criteria contained in this standard. The new module is meticulously controlled and certified by Infineon. Thanks to its use, it is possible to shorten the time of designing and introducing the device to the market, thanks to the ready security solution in the system.

The TPM system has a lifetime declared as 20 years. It allows programmers to perform firmware updates, which in turn enables them to meet the long-term security requirements in rapidly changing industrial environments. In this way, it can also reduce maintenance costs of industrial equipment thanks to secured remote software updates. The TPM chip will be available in serial production in the second half of 2019.

TPM 2.0 Key Features

  • Random Number Generator (RNG) according to NIST SP800-90A
  • TPM FW update functionality installed
  • 6962 Bytes of free NV memory
  • Full personalization with Endorsement Key (EK) and EK certificate
  • Up to 3 keys in the volatile memory
  • Up to 7 keys in the NV memory
  • Up to 8 NV counters
  • Support of various cryptographic algorithms:
    • RSA-1024 and RSA-2048
    • SHA-1 and SHA-256
    • ECC NIST P256
    • ECC BN256

Security chip implementation in Industrial IoT devices

With knowledge of latest Industrial IoT security measures, the choice of proper end-point conroller or gateway is much easier than you think. Some manufacturers can implement TPM 2.0 security chip in production process, to allow users to generate certification keys after purchase, maximizing security of their installations. TECHBASE offers wide range of solutions, optionally aided with TPM system.

For example, ESP-32 based solution, Moduino X series and eModGATE series products offer the support for such security measures. Read more in Industrial IoT Ecosystem brochure, to understand the importance of reliable and secure hardware for Industrial IoT.

Sleep functionality for ModBerry 500 CM4 devices

TECHBASE company designed an extended version of Raspberry Pi Compute Module 4 based devices, ModBerry 500-CM4-PM series for better power management in changing conditions of industrial applications. With the use of GPIO the module can manage boot, sleep mode or safe shutdown of the device in terms of unexpected drop in the power network with help of built-in ESP32 module and Arduino environment.

In the last few years developers marketed a wide range of ARM-based development boards, lacking in enhanced power management, especially sleep and wake up modes, commonly used in PC-grade computing. These boards are not adjusted for battery power supply, so it’s natural that sleep/wake functions should be implemented. In connection with the development of solutions based on Linux-SBC, key factor is adding sleep modes to any remote installation

ESP32 based addon module for Raspberry Pi

With built-in algorithms and the possibility to program on your own, the TECHBASE’s sleep/wake addon module can wake the device using a scheduler/timer. The module itself is based on ESP32-WROVER, used in the Moduino X series. ESP32 as a lightweight and low-powered solution is a perfect aid system for Raspberry Pi. Another option is wake on external triggers, e.g. change of input state, etc. All the options for sleep, shutdown and wake can be configured for various scenarios to ensure constant operation of devices, safety of data and continuity of work in case of power failure in any installation.

Sleep mode with additional power backup

Additional power management option for ModBerry devices is sleep functionality enhanced with SuperCap UPS energy backup device. This solution allows programming scenarios including the execution of chosen actions, in order to save data, send a notification and restart/shutdown the controller after completion.

Advanced power management solution

Most advanced configuration includes use of ESP32 module, known from the successful, lightweight Moduino X series, for extra logic for wake up / sleep scripts. This addon will allow the RaspberryPi-based ModBerry device to be woken up by the internal ESP32 controller

Moduino-ModBerry symbiosis allows a wide range of wake-up/sleep schedule customization, in order to perform best and save energy according to power supply state. Arduino and MicroPython environments provide libraries to control different scenarios of data and power management.

ModBerry 500-CM4-PM availability

The preliminary ModBerry 500-CM4-PM devices are available on request and delivery time will be specified by the Sales Dept. depending on the size of the project. Contact via email or Live Chat here: https://iiot-shop.com/product/modberry-500-cm4-pm/