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Cyan unveils new reference design for asset tracking

Posted: 28 Apr 2006 ?? ?Print Version ?Bookmark and Share

Keywords:Cyan Technology? reference design? asset tracking?

Cyan Technology has introduced a reference design for asset tracking. Based on the company's low power, peripheral-rich eCOG1k 16-bit microcontroller (MCU), the design, downloadable free of charge from the company's website, incorporates a GPS antenna/receiver module as well as a GPRS modem and SIM card. According to the company, products based on the design will be able to transmit their global geographical location via a GSM network with an accuracy of 5m.

Asset tracking is growing rapidly with applications ranging from cargo shipment location to vehicle identification. Paul Barwick, sales director of Cyan, said, "Because of the availability of very low cost GPS and GPRS modules, we are seeing many applications for asset tracking. Our eCOG1k microcontroller, with its wealth of easily configurable peripherals and a 4?A standby current, is ideal for such products and the reference design will save developers a vast amount of time and cost."

The design incorporates a Fastrax GPS module which provides the positional information via a serial interface to the eCOG1k in both Fastrax proprietary iTalk and standard NMEA formats. It also uses the Sony Ericsson GR47 GPRS module and SIM card for transmitting information via a GSM network.

A key role of the eCOG1k MCU is to control the power to the GPS and GPRS modules in order to minimize the power consumption. The reference design also incorporates 1Mbyte of Flash ROM, a 512Kbit serial EEPROM, 1Mbyte of low power static RAM, and an RS232 interface which offers a debug port or use by a PC to wake up the system.

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