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M2M development kit studded with wireless interfaces

Jun 15, 2011 — by Eric Brown — from the LinuxDevices Archive — 18 views

Kontron announced a machine-to-machine (M2M) development kit that ships with Wind River Linux 4.1. The Kontron M2M Smart Services Developer Kit incorporates Kontron's nanoETXexpress-TT computer-on-module — which includes a 1GHz Intel Atom E640T — and offers not only gigabit Ethernet but also wireless interfaces including Wi-Fi, ZigBee, and optional 3G/4G cellular.

Developed in collaboration with Intel Corp., the Kontron M2M Smart Services Developer Kit is designed as an application development and prototyping platform for M2M edge node and gateway devices, says Kontron. Applications are said to include building automation, energy, healthcare, IT/networking, retail, security, and transportation.

The kit (pictured) incorporates Kontron's nanoETXexpress-TT COM Express computer-on-module (COM). The COM was among the first devices to use the E6xx Atoms, which were announced by Intel a few days before the module was unveiled last September.

The nanoETXexpress-TT is available with all four E6xx Atoms, in the extended-temperature versions designated with a "T" suffix, including the M2M kit's 1GHz, 3.3 TDP Atom E640T. The module adopts the COM Express Type 10 pinout that was adopted by the PICMG as part of the COM Express Revision 2.0 spec.

The M2M Smart Services Developer Kit can run out of the box, but is designed as a modular system, enabling customers to modify the nanoETXexpress-TT module, M2M System Carrier Board, and AV board, and house them in another enclosure, says Kontron. The M2M kit may be easily customized to include the network operator's, OEM's, or ISV's brand, says the company.

The kit is equipped with 1GB DDR3 RAM, as well as an internal 4GB microSD card that holds the OS and software, says Konton. In addition, an external microSD slot is said to be available, as well as a mini-PCI Express slot that can be used to connect a solid state drive (SSD) or additional wireless features, including a 4G radio.

The system ships with an Intel 802.11a/b/g/n module, as well as an optional Ericsson 3G module available via an external SIM slot, says Kontron. Short-range WPAN (wireless personal area network) communications are said to be available via a Texas Instruments system on chip (SoC) compliant with the 802.15.4 standard. This offers support for ZigBee, the IPv6-compatible 6LoPAN, as well as Wireless HART (used in process measurement, control, and asset management applications).

Front and back port views of the M2M kit

A gigabit Ethernet port, a USB 2.0 port, and a microUSB port are available on one side of the 3.94 x 2.64 x 1.06-inch device, says Kontron. A second microUSB port sits on the other, along with dual micro-HDMI ports and audio I/O, says the company.

Designed to withstand industrial environments, the kit supports operating temperatures of 32 to 122 deg. F (0 to 50 deg. C), says Kontron. Shock and vibration resistance are also said to be available.

Side views of the M2M kit
(Click on either to enlarge)

Features and specifications listed for the Kontron M2M Smart Services Developer Kit include:

  • Processor — Intel Atom E640T @ 1GHz (via Kontron nanoETXexpress-TT COM Express module)
  • Chipset — EG20T 
  • Memory — 1GB DDR3
  • Flash memory — 4GB internal microSD with Wind River Linux 4.1 pre-installed; external microSD slot
  • Expansion — mini-PCI Express slot; SIM slot
  • Wireless networking:
    • 802.11a/b/g/n via Intel Centrino Advanced N 6205 Wi-Fi module, with antenna connector
    • 802.15.4 WPAN (ZigBee, 6LoPAN, or Wireless HART) via TI CC2351 SoC, with antenna connector
    • optional 3G/4G via Ericsson 5521gw 3G SIM module; 4G can be added via PCIe
  • Networking — gigabit Ethernet port
  • Other I/O:
    • USB 2.0
    • 2 x microUSB 2.0
    • 2 x micro-HDMI
    • mic, line-in, line-out
  • Other features — accelerometer; reset and user input buttons; 16GB USB stick with Wind River Linux 4.1 LiveUSB
  • Power — 100-240 Vac, 50/60 Hz input, 12 VDC, 2A output
  • Temperature — 32 to 122 deg. F (0 to 50 deg. C)
  • Shock — 2G 11ms duration, 6 directions (half-sine)
  • Vibration — 2G 5-40Hz, sloping to 0.00015 g2/[email protected] 500Hz; with unpackaged system 5-500Hz (0.5G sine / 3 axis)
  • Dimensions — 3.94 x 2.64 x 1.06 inches (100 x 67 x 27mm); with mounting brackets 3.94 x 3.62 x 2.44 inches (100 x 92 x 62mm)
  • Weight — 2.35 lbs (1.1 k) packaged; 0.8 lbs (0.36 k) unpackaged

The Kontron M2M System is pre-loaded with a 90-day free trial of Wind River Linux 4.1, says Kontron. The kit also includes a pre-flashed Wind River LiveUSB drive that provides software stacks and wireless drivers. The Wind River stack is said to be optimized for developing, running, debugging, and prototyping embedded software directly onto the Kontron M2M System using Wind River development tools.

Stated Jens Wiegand, vice president and general manager of industrial, medical and M2M at Wind River, "By tightly integrating and optimizing Wind River's suite of software tools with Kontron's M2M system, the Kontron M2M Smart Services Developer Kit can dramatically reduce complexity and help customers get products to market faster."


The Kontron M2M Smart Services Developer Kit will be available worldwide in early Q3, says Kontron, which did not list pricing. More information may be found on the Kontron M2M Developer Kit page.

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