Now Available: xG27 Wireless SoC Brings Small Size, High Performance to Industrial Applications
Announced in March, Silicon Labs’ EFR32xG27 (xG27) family of wireless SoCs is now available to purchase, and its feature set is ideally suited to bring new functionality and design possibilities to industrial applications. These devices have been designed for ultra-low-power, small footprint applications including asset tracking of tools and warehouse equipment.
This new addition to our portfolio comes in response to several trends driving industrial and commercial development, including the utility and convenience of remote monitoring, advances in battery capacity, and the increasing miniaturization of devices. In a previous blog we discussed how the xG27 is suited for medical devices and smart home devices, but there’s a host of industrial IoT use cases that benefit from the same feature set.
Manufacturers recognize the value Bluetooth connectivity offers over what once might have exclusively been proprietary or sub-GHz networks. For example, automotive companies are adding new functionality to tire monitoring systems, which have typically relied on sub-GHz connectivity to simply communicate back and forth between the sensor in the tire and the car’s computer system. But Bluetooth makes it possible to provide critical tire pressure information to a driver’s smartphone, creating a more user-friendly, more actionable user experience. Instead of relying on your car’s system to let you know when tire pressure is a problem, drivers can be proactive and anticipate issues when it might be beneficial – when planning for a road trip or in preparation for bad weather.
Power tools, both in terms of enhancing performance as well as increasing safety and asset tracking, is another area where the xG27 family shines for industrial use. Bluetooth makes it possible to reduce or eliminate the cost of wiring. Water pressure systems, for example, need hoses, obviously. But Bluetooth eliminates the need to also cover the same distance with an additional cable, reducing weight, cost, and ultimately making it easier to use. Bluetooth also makes it possible to manage features, settings, or performance monitoring remotely, as well as making it easy to locate and organize tools within a building or construction site.
There are more broad-based industrial IoT applications where the xG27 will bring new features to operators, including assembly lines and water leak detection. Battery-powered sensors, such as those used to detect leaks, are another tight spot where the xG27 family will fit nicely thanks to its very low sleep current coupled with the small size.
All of these applications benefit from the extensive feature list offered by the xG27. A few highlights include:
- An ultra-low-power SoC that enables Bluetooth Low Energy and Bluetooth mesh for IoT devices such as tools, sensors, remote key entry, and tire monitoring.
- High-performance wireless on a tiny footprint featuring the best-in-class Bluetooth Low Energy performance in a small SoC package
- WLCSP package with dimensions of 2.3 x 2.6 mm (19 GPIO) allows IoT device makers to enable Bluetooth Low Energy on extremely small form-factor robots and wearables.
- The integrated DCDC Boost on xG27 provides IoT device makers a wide voltage range, 0.8 V - 1.7 V or 1.8 V - 3.8 V running down to 0.8 volts, enabling the use of single-cell alkaline and button cells to reduce the device form factor and cost.
- The wakeup pin (BOOST_EN) on the BG27 allows products in a warehouse or transit to remain off for months, consuming less than 20 nA until awoken, ensuring the battery of the device remains fully charged for use.
- The integrated Coulomb Counter enables accurate battery level monitoring for notifications to the user that a water, proximity, weight, pressure, or safety sensor needs to be replaced.