IEEE 802.15.4-BASED EMBEDDED SOFTWARE

A.N. Solutions' Smart Mac Suite Base (SMS-Base) is a software tool that is a part of the @ANY hardware platform solution. SMS Base provides essential functionalities and features designed for development and deployment of simple network topologies, and evaluation of Wireless Sensor Networks (WSN) based on IEEE802.15.4 standard.

SMS provides a simplified, widely common, adjustable communication interface using a standardized AT command set via the RS232 interface. It allows controlling the majority of @ANY platform features and enables flexible commissioning procedures, as well as easy debugging and testing.

Screenshot of an example output from IEEE 802.15.4 based SMS software on a terminal program
Figure 1: terminal window showing basic device information

Smart MAC Suite running on @ANY platform provides the following advantages for the end-user:

• @ANY modules can be connected directly to a host processor as a communication extension whereas the interfaces of the @ANY module enhance the system capabilities by adding additional sensors and actuators.

• User can program and facilitate @ANY Platform without embedded programming knowledge by simply using S-Register mapping and AT-Commands.

• Smart MAC Suite provides IEEE 802.15.4 functionality to users.

• Users can set up basic network topologies (star, peer-to-peer) using static routing.

• Data packages can be transmitted directly or indirectly / acknowledged or broadcasted.

• Temperature sensor support as used on @ANY-BRICK (LM73) and @ANY-HPT (DS7505), as well as support for up to 10 GPIO lines are already included.

• Functionality enhancements, including support of custom sensors and implementation of external host intelligence directly into @ANY module, are available on request.

• Integrated serial bootloader simplifies firmware upgrades.

• vMore hardware support incl. additional sensors (for example using ATMega TWI), more GPIO lines, ATMega AD/DA features or different UART baud rates can be provided on request. Please refer to the Customization section for more information.

Diagram of the basic structure of the IEEE 802.15.4 based SMS software
Figure 2: basic SMS structure

SMS usage scenarios

Smart MAC Suite includes several software parts, as shown in Figure 2. In addition to support of the RF portion, it also takes care of the GPIO control logic, the temperature sensor on the @ANY Brick board (different sensor support is planned for future releases, so please contact us for the latest update) and, of course several, other interfaces, such as the UART interface to interact with a host. SMS is utilizing a Media Access Controller, which implements the following IEEE802.15.4-2006 functionality:

• device scans (searching for networks)

• device association and disassociation (joining or leaving a network)

• direct data transmission (acknowledged)

• indirect data transmission

• more functionality, which can be found in the standard IEEE 802.15.4-2006.

Since there are applications out in the field, which can not afford an additional host intelligence, A.N. Solutions implemented two features in SMS, which allow it to run a network node without any further intelligence. This means that no host is required.

This is realized with the two gray blocks in Figure 2:
"Initialization/WDT support"
"Automatic command execution"

It is possible to run star networks (Base and Pro) and tree networks (Pro only) without a host if they are set up as described below and/or shown in several examples included in the @ANY Development Kit. Therefore, the initialization can be configured in several aspects depending on device type for several scenarios using AT typical profiles. The "Automatic command execution" block executes a previously stored shadow command from the active profile and executes it on an event or repetitively in adjustable periods.

As stated above, SMS Pro has a built-in frame redirection feature, which can be used to forward data to different network points. Using this feature allows to create tree networks without host intelligence. More general routing algorithms are out of the scope of Smart MAC Suite, since they are in the scope of a network layer, which can be executed on the side of the host intelligence.

Illustration of the IEEE 802.15.4 point-to-point topology
peer-to-peer link

 

Illustration of the IEEE 802.15.4 star topology
star network

Illustration of the IEEE 802.15.4 tree topology
tree network

 

Download Flyer as PDF

Download SMS Base Software for the @ANY product platform

Download the documentation: SMS Command Reference in PDF format

SMS Profiler for easy web-based EEPROM content generation

To monitor the underlying IEEE 802.15.4 activities, a 30 day free evaluation version of the IEEE 802.15.4 Protocol Sniffer Software from Perytons Ltd. can be obtained at http://www.perytons.com/downloads.html.

SMS software is also available as a library in order to link directly into your own applications as a part of SMS Pro. This enables rapid application development without knowledge of the underlying standard. Further information about SMS Pro can be found here.

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Create your own EEPROM configuration data for use with SMS software

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