Bluetooth wireless module for IoT gateways

September 09, 2015 // By Graham Prophet
Distributor Alpha Micro has the BL620 Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) wireless module from Laird plc, featuring enhanced firmware that provides Bluetooth Central mode connectivity and with the claim that it makes the task of provisioning BLE connectivity to battery powered devices very straightforward.

Such designs might only be powered by ‘AAA’ or coin-cell batteries so the extremely low power consumption profile of the BL620 suits it for these applications. The BL620 can be quickly programmed for use in stand-alone applications with the smartBASIC event-driven programming language that greatly simplifies BLE development.

The Central mode function allows the BL620 to operate as a gateway device, receiving data from another BLE device such as a sensor and then forward it on to a cloud-based service. Central mode devices might typically be used within a smartphone, tablet or a home gateway unit. Applications running on a central mode device can perform a number of features not available when running in the BLE Peripheral mode. These include updating or triggering web services and opening a URL. Central mode also added GATT client and server services with the ability to have four simultaneous connections.

Measuring 19 x 12.5 x 3 mm the BL620 module consumes 3.5 µA in idle mode and 10.5 mA when transmitting at 0 dBm. Maximum transmit power is 4 dBm and the receiver sensitivity is typically -91 dBm. Peripheral support includes UART, SPI, and I ²C together with an ADC and 28 GPIO pins.

The module supports the Bluetooth application profiles including those of Heart Rate Service, Health Thermometer and Blood Pressure Service, and is certified to all relevant international safety and wireless standards.

Alpha Micro Components;