onsemi, a leader in intelligent power and sensing technologies, has unveiled a new system solution that overcomes the main challenges associated with developing asset tracking tags. Battery life has been a major obstacle to asset tag adoption, particularly within industrial sectors where reducing maintenance efforts and associated costs are a primary concern. The RSL10 Asset Tag is said to offer an unprecedented, industry-leading battery life of up to five years. Until now, the accepted battery life for asset tracking tags or beacons has been just a year or even months, according to onsemi.
This battery life is made possible by the low power consumption of the RSL10 Bluetooth 5 radio SoC and enhancements at the firmware level. Alongside the RSL10, the platform features a 3-axis accelerometer and environmental sensors (motion, pressure and temperature) to provide valuable data and insights into an asset’s environment, condition and orientation. Each sensor is powered through a dedicated MOSFET load switch, controlled by the RSL10. This design enables the overall system power consumption to be controlled on a per-sensor basis, which decreases the total power used. Additional features of the platform include a low-cost antenna, matching circuit optimized for Bluetooth Low Energy transmissions, a multi-purpose dome switch and a 10-pin debugger that can be removed depending on the needs of the application.
The RSL10 was recently selected for use in an indoor localization beacon designed to track and monitor hospital equipment and provide actionable insight to healthcare providers. Blyott, an IoT solution provider, and Tatwah, a market leader in Bluetooth LE tags and beacons, developed the device. Blyott selected Tatwah’s RSL10-based beacons because of their small form-factor, ultra-low-power capabilities and the ability of the IP67 tags to meet the stringent sterilization requirements.
“onsemi provided us with an ideal hardware platform to develop Bluetooth-based RTLS solutions,” said Gery Pollett, CEO and co-founder of Blyott, “The RSL10 allowed us to meet the challenging needs of the healthcare industry. We were particularly impressed by the energy efficiency of the RSL10 radio.”
The RSL10 Asset Tag is available with a comprehensive suite of development tools that include multi-protocol wireless support for Bluetooth Low-Energy connectivity and the Quuppa Intelligent Locating System Real Time Localization Services (RTLS). Within the CMSIS-Pack, included with the evaluation board, onsemi has developed a custom application that demonstrates the ultra-low-power features and capabilities of the platform in an asset tracking use-case.
“The next generation of RSL10-powered Bluetooth LE tags will allow Quuppa partners to leverage highly accurate, sensor-enriched positioning data with unprecedented battery lifetime. This enables use-cases that haven’t been possible before due to the high cost of ownership,” said Santtu Pulli, senior customer manager at Quuppa. “Real-time asset visibility and related productivity optimization will become a key competitive advantage for companies in manufacturing, warehousing and logistics domains. This is just the beginning – the possibilities are endless!”