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QuickCal: Assisted Calibration for Crystal-Free Micro-Motes

Abstract : The Single Chip Micro Mote (SCµM) is a crystal-free single-chip mote that brings us one step closer to the Smart Dust vision, in particular as it can communicate with off-the-shelf IEEE802.15.4 and Bluetooth Low Energy devices. However, before it can be part of such networks, the crystal-free SCµM chip needs to be able to accurately tune its communication frequency to synchronize to the network. This is a challenge since its on-board RC and LC-based resonating circuits have a drift rate that can be 3 orders of magnitude worse than crystal-based oscillators typically used in today's radios. This article introduces QuickCal, a solution that allows a SCµM chip to self-calibrate against off-the-shelf devices dedicated to assisting with its calibration. We show that a SCµM chip can self-calibrate against this QuickCal Box in fewer than 3 min. We further validate that, once it has self-calibrated, a SCµM chip can reliably communicate with off-the-shelf IEEE802.15.4 devices. Finally, we demonstrate a heterogeneous network-composed of a SCµM chip and an OpenMote device-implementing a full 6TiSCH Industrial IoT protocol stack, which uses time synchronization and channel hopping. This is the first time that a crystal-free radio is participating in a channel-hopping enabled TSCH network.
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https://hal.inria.fr/hal-02916810
Contributor : Thomas Watteyne <>
Submitted on : Tuesday, August 18, 2020 - 8:45:19 AM
Last modification on : Wednesday, October 28, 2020 - 4:05:26 PM
Long-term archiving on: : Tuesday, December 1, 2020 - 5:26:59 PM

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Tengfei Chang, Thomas Watteyne, Filip Maksimovic, Brad Wheeler, David Burnett, et al.. QuickCal: Assisted Calibration for Crystal-Free Micro-Motes. IEEE internet of things journal, IEEE, In press, ⟨10.1109/JIOT.2020.3015725⟩. ⟨hal-02916810⟩

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