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Congatec picks Intel Elkhart Lake for embedded PCs

2020-09-23 16:37 ElectronicsWeekly Steve Bush

Congatec has adopted Intel 10nm Elkhart Lake processor for its latest range of embedded PC boards. It has picked up Atom x6000E, Celeron, Pentium N and Pentium J devices for single board computer firm-factors including SMARC, Qseven, COM Express Compact Computer-on-Module, Mini Computer-on-Module and Pico-ITX “The new boards and modules impress with doubled graphics performance for up to ...

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Gadget Book: High-Tech LEGO Projects

2020-09-23 15:47 ElectronicsWeekly Alun Williams

It's certainly not unheard of for some of the home-brewed Gadget Master project to include Lego... so I thought this book was worth highlighting: High-Tech LEGO Projects.

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The Big One – Gaming

2020-09-23 15:21 ElectronicsWeekly David Manners

Bigger than the film industry, bigger than the music industry is the gaming industry. Accordung to Newzoo, gamers spent over $145 billion on video games last year. Which is why, on Monday, Microsoft spent $7.5 billion buying ZeniMax Media – the parent company of Bethesda which is one of the biggest privately held developers and ...

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Northrop Grumman to build anti-jamming military satellites

2020-09-23 13:58 ElectronicsWeekly Alun Williams

The U.S. Space Force has awarded a $298 million contract to build jam-resistant satellites for military use to Northrop Grumman. Specifically, the contract is for the rapid prototyping phase of the Evolved Strategic SATCOM (ESS) programme, which is developing an updated “strategic communications space segment with enhanced resilience and cybersecurity capabilities”. Concerns have been increasingly raised ...

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AR VR powerhouse is 29 x 50mm

2020-09-23 13:49 ElectronicsWeekly Steve Bush

Lantronix has crammed a 15 Top/s augmented and virtual reality processor into a 29 x 50mm system-on-module. Called Open-Q 865XR SOM, it is built around a octa-core Qualcomm chip with: 1x 2.84GHz Kryo Gold prime core 3x 2.42GHz Kryo Gold cores 4x 1.81GHz Kryo Silver cores Hexagon DSP with quad Hexagon Vector eXtensions – vision processing, ...

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Smallest thermoelectric cooler, by 10,000 times

2020-09-23 12:12 ElectronicsWeekly Steve Bush

This is the smallest thermolectric cooler ever made, according to the scientists at UCLA that built it. Total active volume is ~1μm3. “We beat the record for the world’s smallest thermoelectric cooler by a factor of more than ten thousand,” according to UCLA physicist Xin Yi Ling It consists of two 100nm thick single-crystal flakes, ...

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OS-CON capacitors keep low ESR at low temperature

2020-09-23 11:28 ElectronicsWeekly Steve Bush

Panasonic has expanded its range of OS-CON conductive polymer aluminium solid capacitors with a series that maintains low equivalent series resistance (ESR) even at low temperatures, according to the company. Called SVT, the surface-mount parts span 2.5V to 50V, 18µF to 2,700µF and 12mΩ to 35mΩ. Operation is over -50°C up to +125°C for up to 2.000 ...

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Rivet Networks launches Killer E3100 2.5GbE USB adapter

2020-09-23 11:22 CNXSoft Jean-Luc Aufranc (CNXSoft)

Gigabit Ethernet has reigned supreme in the home for a long time, but this year, we’ve started to see 2.5 Gbps Ethernet (2.5GbE) solutions with ODROID-H2+ SBC with 2.5GbE ports, the first...

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Farnell signs AMETEK

2020-09-23 10:56 ElectronicsWeekly David Manners

Farnell has signed a distribution agreement with AMETEK, the manufacturer of monitors and analysers for infrared non-contact temperature measurement. The new agreement broadens Farnell’s safety, hygiene and back-to-work portfolio with the addition of AMETEK Land’s new to market VIRALERT 3 Human Skin Temperature Screening System. The VIRALERT 3 uses thermal and visual cameras to provide ...

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AMD Launches Chromebook-Optimized Ryzen and Athlon 3000 C-Series Mobile Processors

2020-09-23 09:25 CNXSoft Jean-Luc Aufranc (CNXSoft)

After unveiling Athlon 3000-series of 15W mobile processors earlier this year, AMD has now announced Chromebook-optimized mobile processors with AMD Ryzen and Athlon 3000 C-Series family. Designed in...

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Foundries to grow 19% this year

2020-09-23 07:19 ElectronicsWeekly David Manners

The pure play foundry market is on pace to expand by 19% this year, after declining 1% in 2019 (Figure 1), says IC Insights. The market is being driven by demand for application processors and other telecomm device sales into 5G smartphones, IC Insights forecasts 200 million 5G smartphone handsets will be shipped in 2020 (although some forecasts ...

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Module can act as an LVDT, RVDT or resolver simulator

2020-09-23 07:04 ElectronicsWeekly David Manners

Pickering Interfaces of Clacton-on-sea has launched a module that can function as an LVDT, RVDT or resolver simulator. Occupying just one PXI or LXI chassis slot, the programmability of the module means that it minimizes the amount of hardware required. Also, since it sits in a PXI chassis alongside a customer’s other instruments, additional control ...

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TRENCHSTOP IGBT in TO-247 package

2020-09-23 07:01 ElectronicsWeekly David Manners

Infineon is shipping its TRENCHSTOP IGBT7 technology in a a TO-247 package. The TRENCHSTOP family portfolio consists of current ratings of 20A, 30A, 40A, 50A and 75A. It can be used for replacing previous technologies and for paralleling. This version of IGBT7 is especially suited to applications such as industrial motor drives, power factor correction, ...

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Android 11 on Android TV Launches for the Big Screen

2020-09-23 06:03 CNXSoft Jean-Luc Aufranc (CNXSoft)

Android 11 may have been released for smartphones on September 8th, but Google has just only announced the launch of Android 11 on Android TV for an optimized experience on the big screen. The...

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Gateworks Venice Industrial IoT SBC Family Features Dual Ethernet and mPCIe Sockets

2020-09-23 05:09 CNXSoft Jean-Luc Aufranc (CNXSoft)

US-based Gateworks is known for its Ventana and Newport embedded networking single board computers, and the company has now introduced a third family with Venice SBC family based on NXP i.MX 8M Mini...

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Top Ten Foundries

2020-09-23 02:10 ElectronicsWeekly David Manners

Thanks to TrendForce for this one – the top ten foundries in Q1:

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Automation controller builds on Raspberry Pi CM3+

2020-09-22 22:33 LinuxGizmos Eric Brown

Sfera Labs’ “Iono Pi Max” industrial controller runs Linux on a RPi Compute Module 3+ and offers 10/100 LAN, 3x USB, isolated CAN and serial, relay and analog I/Os, plus RTC, UPS, and more. Sfera Labs has launched an Iono Pi Max edge computing and industrial controller that “combines the high-reliability and bus interfaces of […]

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Intel’s Gold Thief

2020-09-22 20:40 ElectronicsWeekly David Manners

In the early 80s Intel suspected that an employee was stealing gold. The company used small quantities of gold in its manufacturing process some of which ended up deposited on the inside of a centrifuge. The guy who cleaned out the centrifuge had bought two houses near Los Gatos on a $30k salary. Intel tried ...

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Microchip releases open source GUI kit for its SAMA5 and SAM9 chips

2020-09-22 20:15 LinuxGizmos Eric Brown

Microchip has introduced a free, open source “Ensemble Graphics Toolkit” running on Linux for building C++ based GUIs for its Cortex-A5 SAMA5 and Arm9 SAM9 SoCs. Microchip has released a free, Apache 2.0 licensed C++ GUI suite for the Linux-powered, single-core, 32-bit SoCs it received from its acquisition of Atmel. The Ensemble Graphics Toolkit (EGT), […]

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The multicore lexicon: Defining the terminology

2020-09-22 19:24 Embedded.com Colin Walls

Multicore embedded designs are becoming increasingly common. Faced with this technology for the first time, a developer is bombarded with terminology. Understanding the alphabet soup that describes this technology is essential to ensure that an optimal design is achieved. This article systematically defines many of the key terms and puts them into context.

Multicore terminology

Here are some, at least, of the key terms that are used in multicore discussion:

  • Core
  • Multicore system
  • Homogeneous multicore
  • Heterogeneous multicore
  • Bare metal
  • Asymmetric Multiprocessing (AMP)
  • Symmetric Multiprocessing (SMP)
  • Inter-core communication
  • Boot order
  • Life cycle management
  • Device virtualization
  • Hypervisor
  • Multicore framework
  • VirtIO
  • rpmsg
  • OpenAMP
  • Mixed criticality

There are probably more terms, but a working understanding of these would be a great start for a developer new to the field. The rest of this article is a series of definitions of these terms and how they link together.

Core

A processor of some kind – something that can execute code – on a system-on-chip (SoC) device. This may be a conventional CPU, or it could be a specialized processor like a Graphics Processor Unit (GPU) or Digital Signal Processor (DSP). A Microcontroller Unit (MCU) is a possibility, where the CPU has its own localized memory and peripherals. On an FPGA a soft core may be employed.

Multicore system

An embedded system that has multiple processor cores. This might be multiple boards in a system, or multiple chips on a board, but most commonly this term is used to describe a chip containing multiple processors. This may be system-on-chip (SoC) device or it could be an FPGA on which multiple soft cores are instantiated (or the FPGA may have some “hard” cores embedded within the fabric).

Homogeneous multicore

This is a hardware architecture. A multicore system where all the cores are identical. It is possible that this term may be used where the cores are all from the same family and are almost identical. This may be applicable to customizable cores like RISC-V.

Heterogeneous multicore

This is a hardware architecture. A multicore system where the cores are not all identical. The cores may be slightly different from one another or radically so. There may be a mix of regular CPUs, DSPs and/or GPUs or other specialized devices. Within the mix of cores there may be several that are identical; this can be thought of as a homogeneous multicore within the heterogeneous environment and this has implications on the software architecture.

Heterogeneous multicore is the most common hardware architecture employed in embedded applications.

Bare metal

A term that describes a core in a multicore system that is not utilizing an operating system.

Asymmetric Multiprocessing (AMP)

This is a software architecture. Each core runs its own operating system or maybe no OS at all (this is termed bare metal). The OSes may be selected so that each one is optimal for the required functionality of the core. Additional software components are needed to facilitate overall control of the device and inter-core communications; this may be a hypervisor or a multicore framework.

AMP is the most common software architecture employed in embedded applications.

Symmetric Multiprocessing (SMP)

This is a software architecture. A single instance of an operating system (which needs to be a specific variant with SMP support) runs across multiple cores. The OS manages distribution of work between the cores. The application code need not be specially written for the SMP context. The main reason for utilizing this architecture is to maximize computing power while minimizing energy use. A group of cores may constitute an SMP subsystem within an AMP design.

Inter-core communication

In a multithreaded system, tasks commonly need to communicate to exchange data or synchronization; in a multicore environment this communication may be between cores. With an AMP system, some specific support for communication is needed – typically utilizing rpmsg. This capability is generally accommodated using a hypervisor or a multicore framework. With an SMP system, the operating system facilitates communication between tasks using regular service calls.

Boot order

An AMP system, with any level of non-trivial complexity, is very likely to need some control over the sequence of cores booting. Normally, one core would be the master of the system. This capability is generally accommodated using a hypervisor or a multicore framework.

Life cycle management

The control of an AMP system may go beyond boot order and encompass the entire operation of the non-master cores. Their operation may be monitored, and they may be shut down or rebooted, as required.

Device virtualization

A facility provided by a hypervisor that enables the application software to use a device which is actually shared between multiple cores, without the code being modified to accommodate the sharing.

Hypervisor

A software component that, in a multicore system, runs across multiple cores and provides control and inter-core communication services. A hypervisor can only run across identical cores – i.e. it must be a homogeneous multicore device. The cores must also be running an operating system of some kind.

Multicore framework

An alternative software component to a hypervisor that provides similar capabilities but is lighter weight. A multicore framework has an instance on each core, so they do not need to be of the same architecture – i.e. it can be a heterogeneous multicore device. An underlying operating system is also not essential – i.e. a multicore framework may run on bare metal.

VirtIO

This is an implementation of device virtualization that is normally applied to networking and storage.

rpmsg

Remote Processor Messaging is a bus/API that facilitates communication between cores.

OpenAMP

An open standard that guides the implementation of a multicore framework. See: https://www.openampproject.org

Mixed criticality

A system where some components have safety/security implications and require certification. In various industries, devices that present safety or security issues must comply with specific standards and get that compliance certified. This is an expensive process. By partitioning a design into critical and non-critical subsystems, the costs may be reduced by only certifying the critical subsystem. Such a design is said to exhibit mixed criticality.

Colin Walls has over forty years’ experience in the electronics industry, largely dedicated to embedded software. A frequent presenter at conferences and seminars and author of numerous technical articles and two books on embedded software, Colin is an embedded software technologist with Mentor, a Siemens business, and is based in the UK. His regular blog is located at: https://blogs.sw.siemens.com/embedded-software/. He may be reached by email at colin_walls@mentor.com.

The post The multicore lexicon: Defining the terminology appeared first on Embedded.com.

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Inseto supplies probe station for Warwick’s SiC power semi programme

2020-09-22 18:38 ElectronicsWeekly Steve Bush

Andover distributor Inseto has supplied the University of Warwick with a SemiProbe PS4L probe system for developing next-generation silicon carbide (SiC) power semiconductors. “The PS4L provides an accurate and repeatable means of mechanically interfacing fabricated prototype devices – as die or on the wafer – with an analyser that can inject thousands of volts and measure hundreds ...

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OnLogic’s Ubuntu-ready AMD servers include compact industrial edge model

2020-09-22 18:29 LinuxGizmos Eric Brown

OnLogic has launched a line of AMD servers, including two with 2nd Gen Epyc and three with Ryzen 3000, including a $1,547 and up Compact Industrial AMD Ryzen Edge Server. Meanwhile, AMD launched some 15W mobile Ryzen C-series chips. OnLogic and AMD, which last year teamed up on promoting OnLogic mini-PCs based on AMD’s Ryzen […]

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Novel UK Si transistor switches 1.2kV and 75A through a TO247 package

2020-09-22 16:26 ElectronicsWeekly Steve Bush

Nottingham-based Search For The Next (SFN) has released data on a power transistor made using its ‘quantum junction’ transistor (QJT) technology – branded ‘Bizen’. It has a TO-247 transistor switching 1.2kV and 75A. “To get this level of performance from traditional silicon-based mosfets, the device size must be much bigger,” said SFN CEO and founder David ...

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60 pixel IR sensor array recognises gestures for automotive

2020-09-22 15:51 ElectronicsWeekly Steve Bush

Maxim is offering what is claims is a lower-cost alternative to time-of-flight cameras for gesture control in vehicles: a 6 x 10 array of infra-red photodiodes. “Optical-based MAX25205 enables most hand gestures,” according to the comany. “The gesture and proximity-sensing sensor features a high level of integration and comes in a 4 x 4mm chip. ...

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The Three Not-So Amigos

2020-09-22 15:26 ElectronicsWeekly David Manners

Today Xi, Putin and Trump address the 75th UN General assembly debate. The debate will be virtual but imagine what it would be like if they bandied barbs mano-e-mano. Trump to Xi: Do you want a fight? Xi to Trump: Bring it on – our viruses will beat your viruses Putin to Xi: Vladivostok is ...

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GigaDevice GD32E5 Cortex-M33 microcontrollers target motor and industrial control

2020-09-22 15:02 CNXSoft Jean-Luc Aufranc (CNXSoft)

We first mentioned GigaDevice Semiconductor in 2015 for its STM32-compatible GD32 microcontroller, but last year, the company was brought back to our attention again with its GD32V RISC-V...

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switching regs drop into LMxx footprints

2020-09-22 12:52 ElectronicsWeekly Steve Bush

RS Components has added the Traco Power’s TSR-WI series of non-isolated point-of-load dc-dc converters to its product portfolio. There are two families within the series, and efficiency can be as high as 94% (15V 0.6A part). TSR-0.6WI 0.6A maximum output (0.4A 24V version) -40° to +85°C no de-rating TSR-1WI 1A maximum output (0.7A 24V version) ...

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Low-jitter crystal oscillators and VCXOs are small for optical modules

2020-09-22 12:16 ElectronicsWeekly Steve Bush

Silicon Labs has introduced a family of small crystal oscillators (2.5 x 3.2mm option) and voltage-controlled crystal oscillators (VCXOs) for applications that require low jitter and frequency-flexible clock synthesis. Si54x/6x ‘Ultra’ oscillators can have jitter as low as 80fs “providing jitter margin for applications including data centre interconnect, optical transport, broadcast video, test and measurement”, ...

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Si Labs shipping small XOs and VCXOs

2020-09-22 12:14 ElectronicsWeekly David Manners

Silicon Labs has introduced a family of small form-factor, high-performance crystal oscillators (XOs) and voltage-controlled crystal oscillators (VCXOs) for applications that require low jitter and frequency-flexible clock synthesis. The Si54x/6x Ultra Series XO/VCXOs deliver jitter performance of 80fs for integer and fractional frequencies across the entire operating range, providing outstanding jitter margin for demanding applications including data ...

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Microchip graphics toolkit for Linux-on-Arm

2020-09-22 11:31 ElectronicsWeekly Steve Bush

Microchip has a GUI development toolkit for 32bit SAMA5 and SAM9 series of Arm Cortex-A5 and ARM926EJ-S MPUs running Linux Called Ensemble Graphics Toolkit, it is a no-cost and royalty-fre open-source C++ suite based on the permissive Apache 2.0 open-source license. It works with the company’s chips, system-in-package and system-on-module products. “By taking advantage of underlying ...

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TechNexion Unveils EDM and AXON SoM’s Powered by NXP i.MX8M Plus SoC

2020-09-22 10:22 CNXSoft Jean-Luc Aufranc (CNXSoft)

A few days ago we wrote about Variscite’s NXP i.MX 8M Plus-powered AI systems-on-modules and devkits, and now it’s TechNexion’s turn to introduce its own SoM’s for artificial...

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Imagination develops ray tracing primer

2020-09-22 10:11 ElectronicsWeekly David Manners

Imagination Technologies has developed a Ray Tracing Levels System, to give developers and OEMs an insight into the capability of solutions for ray tracing acceleration available now and in the future. The Ray Tracing Levels System primer is available to download now. The System identifies increasingly advanced stages of ray tracing acceleration, across a range ...

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Massachusetts engineers develop flat fish-eye lens

2020-09-22 07:23 ElectronicsWeekly David Manners

Engineers at MIT and the University of Massachusetts at Lowell have designed a wide-angle lens that is completely flat. It is the first flat fisheye lens to produce crisp, 180-degree panoramic images. The design is a type of “metalens,” a wafer-thin material patterned with microscopic features that work together to manipulate light in a specific ...

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The AMS AS7038RB vital sign sensor reads SpO2 measurements

2020-09-22 07:14 ElectronicsWeekly Alun Williams

AMS has introduced what it describes as the industry’s thinnest dedicated sensor for blood oxygen saturation (SpO2) measurement, the AS7038RB. The sensor specialist and analogue chip supplier says it has the capability to remotely monitor this vital sign in small consumer products, such as earbuds, smart watches and wristbands. This is in addition to ...

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Graphcore launches Elite Partner programne

2020-09-22 07:00 ElectronicsWeekly David Manners

The Graphcore Elite Partner Program has been launched with a network of channel partners serving customers around the world. Graphcore’s IPU systems are already accelerating machine intelligence and delivering a competitive advantage in financial services, healthcare, consumer internet, academic research and many other fields. Those real-world results, along with outstanding performance benchmarks, are driving international demand for ...

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SEMI August billings up 32.5% y-o-y

2020-09-22 07:00 ElectronicsWeekly David Manners

August’s SEMI billings figure was 3% up on July’s $2.57 billion at $2.65 billion. That is 32.5% higher than the August 2019 billings level of $2 billion. “August billings of North America-based semiconductor equipment manufacturers demonstrate solid performance and strong year-over-year growth,” says SEMI CEO Ajit Manocha, “semiconductor equipment demand remains robust despite supply chain ...

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Sovol SV02 3D Printer Unboxing and First prints

2020-09-22 06:41 CNXSoft Karl Johnson

Hey, Karl here. Back in September of 2019, I reviewed the Sovol SV01 printer. I had a very good experience and still recommend it to this day. Fast forward a year and Sovol is back with a new...

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Wallys WiFi 5 (802.11ac) mini PCIe cards deliver higher Tx power and performance (Sponsored)

2020-09-22 04:53 CNXSoft Sponsored Post

Wallys is offering two mini PCIe cards to add WiFI 5 (802.11ac) to existing gateways, computers, or boards. Both 802.11ac modules are powered by Qualcomm Atheros QCA9880 chipset, with DR600VX mPCIe...

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Chaps In A Whirl

2020-09-22 02:19 ElectronicsWeekly David Manners

A chatty approach to ads is demonstrated in this example from Dawe Instruments published 59 years ago in Electronics Weekly’s edition of March 8th 1961:

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Amazon engages with Nordic, Semtech, SiLabs and TI on ‘Sidewalk’ 900MHz + 2.4GHz network

2020-09-21 18:22 ElectronicsWeekly Steve Bush

Amazon has released details of its ‘Sidewalk’ medium-distance wireless network, and its silicon partners including Nordic Semiconductor, Semtech, Silicon Labs and Texas Instruments. In a nutshell, it is a combination and coordination of wireless technologies – LoRa and FSK at 900MHz, and Bluetooth Low Energy at 2.4GHz – and shared networking that will offer low-power wireless ...

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Pi-like SBC offers Rockchip RK3128 for $25

2020-09-21 18:07 LinuxGizmos Eric Brown

Geniatech has launched a $25 “XPI-3128” SBC that runs Linux or Android on a quad -A7 Rockchip RK3128 with 512MB RAM, 8GB eMMC, optional 802.11ac/BT 4.2, and Pi-like ports, layout, and 40-pin GPIO. Last year, Geniatech introduced a series of Developer Board (DB) SBCs based on Rockchip SoCs led by the RK3399Pro-based DB3399 Pro. Now […]

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Expectations for 5G edge cloud infrastructure in industrial and automotive

2020-09-21 17:09 Embedded.com Paul Miller

The edge cloud is integral to virtual 5G infrastructure design and to operators’ ability to offer high performance services to advanced enterprise customers. In a recent survey conducted on behalf of Wind River by Heavy Reading, 38 percent of operator respondents identified the edge cloud as “critical” to their 5G strategy and 47 percent as “important.”

Enterprise and Industrial 5G Edge Cloud

The 5G system is designed, in part, for enterprise focused use cases. The intent is to apply 5G technical capabilities across diverse industries, which in turn drives new revenue opportunities for service providers. This applies, in particular, where there is a need for ultra-reliable low latency communications (URLLC), which cannot be supported over LTE.

Examples are cyber physical systems with deterministic performance requirements, such as industrial robotics or remote control of machinery where larger round trip latency cannot meet real time system requirements. There are also other demanding applications that cannot be served with existing wireless technologies as they are challenged by scale as well as latency. Examples include autonomous vehicles (ground and airborne), machine vision, virtual and augmented reality for industrial applications, telemedicine, and so on.

According to a recent Heavy Reading study on enterprise and industrial users’ perspectives on 5G, just over a quarter of respondents appear sold on 5G already, saying “performance advantages will force its use” where wireless is needed in industrial networks. The majority, however, say that the claimed, theoretical advantages of 5G still “need to be proven in practice.” They are favorable toward the technology but are not yet convinced. This accords with the proof-of-concept (PoC) activity and trials large industrial companies have been running as they seek to integrate 5G into their production environments, as well as typical early adopter paradigms.


Figure. In a recent study, participants responded (n=43) with their view view on 5G for industrial use-cases, relative to LTE and WiFi? (Source: Heavy Reading)

Additionally, analytics applied to monitoring of edge cloud infrastructure is critical to day-to-day operations. When asked about the importance of various types of embedded edge cloud monitoring, respondents believe embedded monitoring is more important to infrastructure than it is to the applications themselves or to deriving business insights.

Automotive Sector and 5G

The automotive sector is going through a period of rapid and deep change, with the connected vehicle trend (telematics, navigation, infotainment, etc.) occurring at the same time as advances in driver assistance/automation and mass-scale electrification. Mobile networks, in the broadest sense, are important enablers for each of these. For example, the 3GPP effort has a dedicated 5G development track for automotive. There is also activity in the IEEE on the Dedicated Short-Range Communication (DSRC) standards group, as well as in the satellite sector.

Emerging as popular solutions, the 3GPP C-V2X initiatives started in LTE and is now gaining pace in 5G. A key part of the C-V2X concept is the road side unit (RSU), which is a highly distributed edge cloud node from a hardware and cloud infrastructure software perspective. In time, as deployment gains pace, RSUs are likely to see significantly denser deployments than current RANs, making it an important market for “far edge” infrastructure platforms.

In terms of which C-V2X applications will lead deployment, vehicle-to-network is the clear leader, according to the Heavy Reading survey, with 56 percent of the response. This refers to vehicles communicating with cloud services for information like real-time traffic routing and is the simplest V2X service.

One of the biggest sources of hyperbole in the early years of 5G development was equating autonomous vehicles with 5G. The intent was to show how 5G could help advance connected cars and autonomous driving. However, these statements were often extrapolated out of context and taken to mean that autonomous driving could not happen without 5G. This is incorrect because autonomous is developing without 5G and because it is, and always was, unrealistic to assume that 5G coverage would exist everywhere an autonomous vehicle might travel. According to the Heavy Reading study, the largest group of respondents (36 percent) believe that 5G is a “requirement” for L4 autonomous driving.

Mobile network coverage is generally good, but it is far from ubiquitous. In geographically large markets, in particular, it is hard to cover everywhere with terrestrial systems. There are now several non-terrestrial systems in development for wide-area broadband access, with low orbit satellite systems showing promise. At face value, a two-way satellite could be a good solution for vehicle connectivity as an adjunct to cellular and for use cases where low latency is not vital.

When asked if they had plans to integrate satellite connectivity into their 5G automotive offering, respondents’ answers were split almost equally with 34 percent answering “yes,” 35 percent answering “no plans” and 31 percent saying they “don’t know.” The “no” camp might be explained by factors like the additional cost and business relationships satellite would require, by the fact that satellite for two-way mobile vehicle communications is less mature than 5G for the mass market, and by the lack of support for low latency services. The “don’t knows” speak for themselves.

Conclusion

As LTE or Wi-Fi cannot meet the performance requirements of industrial use cases, the perception is that 5G will be superior for industrial applications, thus enabling many of them. Clearly, the emergence of these new industrial and enterprise edge applications is also forging the way for the 5G edge to be fully virtualized, as an enabler to host these applications. We are seeing a transition in contemporary expectations that assume the emergence of autonomous vehicles, telemedicine, Industry 4.0 automated factory and industrial internet of things (IIoT). It will be interesting to watch these use cases converge with the ramp up of available 5G infrastructure.

Paul Miller is Chief Technology Officer at Wind River, responsible for the company’s technology strategy. With nearly three decades of telecommunications and advanced technology leadership at both large companies and successful startups, he is currently focused on Wind River’s edge virtualization and AI solutions, including Wind River’s market-leading 5G Cloud offering based on StarlingX.

The post Expectations for 5G edge cloud infrastructure in industrial and automotive appeared first on Embedded.com.

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