VirtualSense alpha: Open-Hardware Ultra-Low-Power Wireless Sensor Node

An IEEE 802.15.4-compliant wireless sensor module running a Java-compatible 16 bit Virtual Machine

Emanuele Lattanzi (DiSBeF Università di Urbino e NeuNet), Andrea Seraghiti (DiSBeF Università di Urbino), Massimo Zandri (DiSBeF Università di Urbino e NeuNet), Alessandro Bogliolo (DiSBeF Università di Urbino e NeuNet)

NEUNET Technical Report No. 12.002

Virtual Sense Alpha

Abstract – The availability of off-the-shelf micro controller units based on energy efficient 16-bit RISC processors which provide a wide range of low-power inactive modes with average current in the range of micro Watts and wake-up times in the range of micro seconds makes it possible to develop ultra-low-power sensor nodes able to run a virtual machine to speedup the development and the deployment of sensing/monitoring applications. VirtualSense is an open-hardware/open-source project which aims at the development of IEEE 802.15.4-compliant low-cost ultra-low-power wireless sensor nodes providing a Java-compatible runtime environment which grants to the programmer full control of the low-power states of the hardware. This white paper presents the hardware architecture of the alpha release of VirtualSense, based on a Texas Instruments MSP430F54xxa microcontroller unit.

Keywords: Wireless sensor network (WSN), Sensor node, Low-power design, Open hardware, Open source, Dynamic power management (DPM), Java Virtual Machine, CC2520, TI MSP430F54xx

DOI: 10.4459/12.002.TRP.EN

Full reference: E. Lattanzi, A. Seraghiti, M. Zandri, and A. Bogliolo, “VirtualSense alpha: Open-Hardware Ultra-Low-Power Wireless Sensor Node”, NeuNet Technical Report No. 12.002, 2012. DOI:10.4459/12.002.TRP.EN

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[Illustration by Alessandra Tombesi]

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