This whitepaper aims to offer recommendations for Internet of Things (IoT) Applications and wireless applications in general. They consist of embedded solutions with sensors, software, and other technologies for the purpose of connecting and exchanging data with other devices and systems over the Internet.
Through its Partners, Dimac Red is able to offer state of the art solutions suitable for these applications. For example Microchip and Johanson Technologies are very focused on the markets listed below:
They cover the Bandwidths and Technologies highlighted in the following table:
They can thus ensure compliancy, interoperability and quality assurance. Their solutions are compliant to
– Standard – FCC (USA), IC (Canada), RED (Europe)
– Optional by Product – SRRC (China), KC (Korea), TC (Taiwan), MIC (Japan)
– Additional product-level testing may be required for other countries
– Microchip module certifications are transferrable
However Safety and immunity testing are under the responsibility of the product manufacturer.
Key advantages of Wi-Fi technology are low power consumption, small size, easy IoT implementations, secure cloud connections, high-quality certified modules and silicon. Microchip offers a variety of modules and their evaluation kits (ATWILC, ATWINC families for example).
Key advantages of the Bluetooth Technology are:
– Proven Software and Hardware Reliability
– Proven interoperability
– Mobile app for audio and Bluetooth Low Energy
– Bluetooth 5.0 support
– High-volume production expertise
– Dual-Mode Audio Products (Bluetooth Low Energy + A2DP)
– High-quality sound with 24-bit/96 kHz data & digital audio (I2S)
– HD voice with echo suppression and noise cancellation
– Multi-speaker class 1 & 2 modules
– Small form factor headset applications
– Data Products
– Low power consumption
– ASCII interface for use with 8-/16-/32-bit MCUs
– Compact sizes 4×4 mm (IC), 5.5×4.5 mm (SiP) or 6×8 mm (Modules)
Also here Microchip offers a variety of modules and their evaluation boards (RN, ATBTLC, ATSAMB, BM families for example).
IoT Applications allow for services in Healthcare, Wearable, Smart City, Industrial, Agriculture, Smart Home, Transportation. The table below well describes the implemented features:
In summary, Microchip is offering the active Hardware and the associated Software while Johanson Technology is offering the passive components associated to the active Hardware.
For designers it is important to access reliable documents able to provide technical suggestions and guidelines in a simple way. Even more important for them is to rely on valuable feedbacks on their implementation from competent Engineers.
Johanson Technology and Microchip documents include many applicable recommendations, but designers are taking benefits from direct comments, tailored to their design. Also, they need a summary of the available services. This section of the document summarizes the advantages of the technical services provided by both Microchip and Johanson Technology and aims to help the designer with interpreting the contents.
Microchip offers also the “Wireless Check Service”, a design review with an expert Technical Team at the Factory. They check the layout, the gerber files and the schematics.
At the link below you can get the 10 steps instructions to submit a design check request.
The following specific design checks are offered:
The general landing page for Wireless IoT Applications is available at https://www.microchip.com/design-centers/internet-of-things
The typical components provided by Johanson Technology are shown in the example of a typical radio communication system reported below.
Supported Application Bands are:
- Wireless LAN, Bluetooth, Home RF • 2.4 GHz & 5.5 GHz ISM Band • GPS
- GSM/EDGE/GPRS/DCS/PCS/WCDMA • Zigbee • UNII
- WiMAX 802.16 d/e • MIMO • UWB
Johanson Technology offers a wide selection of Antennas, Band Pass Filters, Baluns, Diplexers, Triplexers and Couplers, all based on Low Temperature Co-fired Ceramic (LTCC) technology. For optimal results, these passive components are designed in collaboration with the major vendors of the Chipsets (Texas Instruments, Silicon Labs, Nordic, ST Microelectronics, Microchip etc.…).
The set of products designed for each chipset Vendor is reported in the “Chipset Specific RF Front End” page. It can be reached from https://www.johansontechnology.com/ and selecting the “Products” menu, as shown in the next snapshot:
An example of the level of details is in the webpage https://www.johansontechnology.com/microchip
where Baluns, filters, antennas specifically designed for Atmel (now Microchip) chipsets are reported:
Among other information, the notes under “Chipset Match” column are chipset specific, reporting comments on the exact model which each Johanson Technology P/N has been designed for. Sometimes also the websites of the Vendors of the chipsets are reporting the recommended BOM of the Application, including the Johanson Technology parts.
The Johanson Technology website also provides interesting technical notes on Antennas, Integrated Passive Components, RF Capacitors and Inductors, Packaging and Soldering information, and more.
Along with the tailoring of the devices for specific chipsets, Johanson offers multiple models of SMD ceramic antennas, baluns, filters, couplers each one designed for specific applications. Antennas must be selected among multiple options based on: the geometry of the Application, the desired operating distance and the sort of material and shape of the implementation around the board where the antenna is mounted.
For each Antenna, the datasheet provides the layout considerations, the exact size of the critical areas (with or without Ground cuts), the dimensions of the PADs and the related distance, the mounting considerations, the shape of the traces and the characteristics of the stack-up of the PCB where the dimensions of the traces are reported.
The level of details is reported below as an example (this is extracted from the datasheet of the P/N 2450AT18A100)
This Antenna is specifically designed for applications where the antenna is located in a corner of the PCB.
Other antennas are designed in order to properly work when located in the border of the PCB, like 2450AT42E010B:
You can download the reference design files for this Antenna here.
Johanson only supports DXF CAD files at the moment.
This model is specifically designed to be directly above metal/ground and must be positioned on the PCB edge. The component can also be placed on an arc with some impact on the efficiency. If the designer is able to clear objects below and above the edge region of the PCB alternative solutions are available. There are 3 different versions of this antenna. Their selection depends on substrate/ PCB thickness and all 3 variants must be mounted along a PCB edge (3 sides surrounded by ground).
Other models of antennas are tailored for PCBs with cuts on GND. In general, Johanson offers antennas for a wide range of frequency bandwidths, from 433MHz to 8GHz.
The website page shows the list of the available antennas with the associated characteristics and the Product Life Cycle Status.
Proper placement of our antennas is critical in order to have usable radiation performance. Radiation performance is important when it comes to range. The recommendations reported in the datasheets shall be followed as close as possible and shall be implemented as they are shown. Only the width of the traces could be changed in order to match the desired impedance in accordance with the stack up of the PCB. In order to make sure that there are not drawbacks able to gate the overall performance, designers can rely on the service of complimentary design layout reviews from JTI Engineering Team at the Headquarter. If you wish to take advantage of this simply send JTI Engineering Team (through Dimac Red) your schematics, layout and Gerber files when ready. Johanson Technology is available to sign an NDA agreement with every Customer in order to make feel them comfortable when it comes to the protection of their Intellectual Properties.
Besides, the antenna matching tuning service is also available; Johanson Technology can measure a few sample boards in an anechoic chamber and provide the customer with a detailed report with the values of the components required for the matching network.
Along with the Integrated Passive Components by Johanson Technology (as previously mentioned, antennas, matched baluns, filters, diplexers, etc.) designers can rely on a vast offer of precision resistors, RF inductors, Power Inductors, DC rail filtering (X2Y), High Voltage capacitors, and High-Q capacitors by Johanson Dielectrics (JDI). You can contact Dimac Red Team any time for any of these needs.
Below is a list of technical documents to assist the Engineering Teams in the design efforts in order to obtain the best results.
JTI Chip Antenna Selection Guide
JTI Chip Antenna Mounting and Tuning Techniques
Chip Antenna Design Assistance, Tuning, and Characterization Services
Chip Balun: Definitions & Measurement Methodology (if your chipset has a differential output)
Avago AppCAD TL Calculator
Some best practices include:
1. Maximize the RF ground pour (for antennas), minimize sections, islands and breaks
2. Keep all single ended unbalanced transmission lines as CPW
3. Preserve symmetry and shorten lengths of the balanced lines
4. Place the antenna using ground surrounds per the datasheet
5. Place the antenna with landings as described per the datasheet.
6. Ensure there are no environmental violations per our Guidelines
For further information or assistance please do not hesitate to contact Marco Portinari firstname.lastname@example.org
Tel: +39 2494856 ext 224