I've finished version 2 of my LoRa Backplane and with quite a lot of interest on twitter and a bit in the TTN Slack I thought I'd post about it here.
Its finally completed, here's a final list of features and functions.
- Passive POE - The board can be powered either using the MicroUSB Port on the Raspberry Pi Zero or primarily using a Passive POE Injector with no adaptors needed on the gateway. The board has a switching power supply with an approximate 90% effeciency and can accept between 9-12V over POE.
- Wired or Wireless - Connect to the internet using either the Wired Ethernet Connection with POE or use the Wireless connection on the Zero W
- Reliable - The board features mechanical reliability in the soldered headers & mounting holes for the Raspberry Pi Zero & RAK831. Furthermore with the monitoring functions and reliability of Raspberry Pi there should be minimal downtime.
- Monitoring - The board has a MCU running on it at the same time that checks the Raspberry Pi is operational and if not reboots it, it also allows for a WOL packet to be sent to the board and have it reset the Raspberry Pi.
- No soldering required! - The board will arrive pre-soldered and with a Zero WH & Radio Module will be as simple as plugging the three boards into each other.
- Compact - The total size is 8.5x8x8CM including the Raspberry Pi Zero and Radio Module.
- Supports both RAK & IMST Boards - This backplane supports both the RAK831 & IMST ic880a Radio Concentrators, allowing you to have a mix of gateways using both boards, with no software configuration changes required.
- Quick to get going - As well as the fact no soldering is required, I'll be compiling a SD Card image which will allow you to write the OS & Packet Forwarding software to the SD Card. Change the configuration file on the SD Card using your computer. Plug it into the Pi and go!
If you are interested in potentially buying one:
If you're interested in buying one, this may launch on Indiegogo because of the risks involved. However to begin with you can sign up to the emailing list at https://www.indiegogo.com/projects/ultimate-lora-gateway-backplane/coming_soon , you'll then get emailed if the project launches. The current estimated price is £30 / 35 EUR / 40USD plus postage (5-10).
You'll have to buy a Raspberry Pi and RAK831 or ic880a-SPI elsewhere.
If the email list doesn't get enough interest then the campaign won't launch., Unless you opt into the indiegogo email only I get your email address of which it'll only be used to email you to notify you if it launches and nothing else.
Disclaimer: Raspberry Pi is a Trademark of the Raspberry Pi Foundation, While designed for use with a Raspberry Pi & either IMST ic880a or RAK Wireless RAK831 there is no affiliation or endosment by the companies.