LPRS’ low-power wireless connectivity for Raspberry Pi now in distribution

February 07, 2014 // By Graham Prophet
Raspberry Pi products available from RS feature low-power RF technology, and Wi-Fi, to add low cost, low power wireless functionality to the widely-used computing platform

RS Components has added two wireless connectivity options to its products based on the Raspberry Pi computer. The new modules are built using low power radio technology, and Wi-Fi.

Made by Low Power Radio Systems , (LPRS) the USB wireless device adds 'plug-and-play' connection to the Raspberry Pi (drivers are automatically loaded), and low power RF transceiver technology to provide a bi-directional link to any device supporting serial communications, for example another Raspberry Pi. Frequency, bandwidth, power output and data rates can be configured to allow multiple devices to communicate free from interference from each other and any other RF devices. The modules transmit data packets of up to 180 Bytes and the link is intended for low-volumes of data such as sensors and 'sense and control' applications. – but without the power demands of WiFi. The RF technology employed enables significantly greater range (up to 300m depending on the terrain) and lower power consumption than other wireless protocols such as Wi-Fi or Bluetooth. An integral SMA antenna is included. A kit variant of this product is also available, which contains dual rather than a single transceiver.

A Wi-Fi module by Edimax provides functionality compliant with the IEEE802.11b/g/n wireless protocol via a tiny adapter that plugs into the USB port on the Raspberry Pi. The adapter supports transmission rates of up to 150Mbps, which is suitable for large data transfer and is three times faster than standard 11g connections. The smart adapter adjusts the transmission output according to the distance and CPU offload to achieve a reduction in power consumption of between 20% and 50% when the wireless function is idle. It can be configured using Wi-Fi Protected Setup (WPS) to provide a simple, secure wireless network.

RS Components; www.rs-components.com