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Sigfox "Butterfly" Feather Wing

Sigfox-ify your Feather projects with a Sigfox Feather Wing which includes FCC certified module, sensors, and 1 year of connectivity.

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Sigfox is a global LPWAN connectivity service. With this Wing, Feather projects can now send data directly to the cloud via Sigfox certified radios operating in 900 ISM band. This Feather Wing embodies a complete Sigfox "0G Network" modem subsystem example design based on an FCC module certified for operation in US, Canada, Mexico and Brazil (900 MHz band) It also includes temp, humidity, and motion sensors from ST Microelectronics. An example asset tracking project based on the Feather ESP8266 Huzzah demonstrates how easy it is to perform reliable WIFI-based geolocation using Sigfox. Sigfox will offer 1 year of connectivity for FREE via BUILD.SIGFOX.COM "activate" subscription for makers/developers.

Sigfox is a global low power wireless network offering service in over 65 countries including the US, and Canada.  Now is the time to start learning what the Sigfox "0G Network" can offer for IOT use cases that require low cost and 2-10 years of battery life.   Initial Feather Wing boards will support the US, Canada, Mexico and Brazil regions. This Feather Wing includes a complementary 1 year subscription  to the Sigfox "0G Network" and FREE activation.  The FCC certified radio module is programmed via AT Command interface -- 1 line of code is all you need to send a Sigfox message.  On-board sensors from ST Microelectronics and Avago Technologies are connected to the host Feather via I2C and come with example code and descriptions on how to forward sensor data via Sigfox Cloud APIs and Callbacks Popular asset tracking use-cases are well adapted to the ESP32 HUZZAH Feather with BLE and WIFI radios.  BLE Beacon sniffing  combines with outdoor WIFI-based geolocation (and GPS) match perfectly with the Sigfox payload arrangement.  

Coverage concerns?   Sigfox has dense coverage in many of the major cities in North America.  To augment local coverage, Digi-Key now offers the Sigfox Access Station Micro.     


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Technical Details

Embedded design - Feather / Feather Wing communications

The design will require 1 software UART from the Host Feather to communicate with the Sigfox radio module.  A C library supporting the AT commands over s/w UART is available.  Sensors are connected via the I2C bus as slaves.  

Embedded design - Sensors

The HTS221 is a Temp-Humidity sensor.  LIS2DH12 is a 3-axis MEMS accelerometer.  Sensor driver code is available for both STM sensors.  The APDS9960 from Avago Technologies performs RGB color sensing, proximity sensing, or ambient light sensing.  Firmware examples are availble for Arduino.

Embedded design - RF

A 50 OHM matching network is provided to support an external antenna (not included) via an SMA connector.  Suggested list of 900 MHz whip antennas are available.  

Code examples - Geolocation

A simple WIFI sniffing geolocation example based on the ESP8266 Huzzah supports a full end-to-end solution with cloud support from the Sigfox ATLAS WIFI geolocation cloud service.  Alternately, geolocation examples can be developed using the HERE platform and 3rd party cloud.  

Cloud examples -  Sensor-Cloud Dashboard

Sensor data dashboarding examples and payload parsing will be illustrated via ADAFRUIT.IO.

Sigfox connectivity 

Sigfox connectivity will be supported via the "activate" option hosted at BUILD.SIGFOX.COM  One year subscription duration begins after reception of the first transmission at the Sigfox cloud.

Sigfox support - Sigfox learning experience

Sigfox supports the maker community via a dedicated adoption team, SLACK channel and online forum.  To help drive interest, I propose a series of short webinars to jump-start the maker community using this Feather Wing 

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Preliminary Schematic

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  • Sigfox Butterfly Feather Wing

    dbaughman123001/01/2020 at 18:47 0 comments

    The project is named "Butterfly" as a nod to the Sigfox logo.  The notion of a "Butterfly-Feather" matched the idea of combining with the Wing concept in a new and unique offer in the Feather eco-system.   The next step in the project plan is to generate the layout and pick and place files.  This activity should be complete by (tbd) date.   Also, just to mention, a future revision of this design is under development  targeting a full FEATHER with ARM M0/M0+ SDK.  This design would also include BLE 4.2 offering a Feather with BLE+Sigfox.  Both radios will be hosted in 1 instance of an FCC certified module from a vendor currently under evaluation.

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