German-based MakerTronika Labs has recently offered up their new TinyLoRa development board in an Adafruit Feather-style form factor. The board is compatible with most of Adafruit’s Feather and FeatherWing boards, making it a versatile platform for IoT and other projects that need long-range communications with low power consumption.
TinyLoRa was designed around Microchip’s ATSAMR34J18 SiP, which features a 32-bit Arm Cortex-M0+ MCU (256Kb of Flash, 40Kb of RAM) with LoRa transceiver. The SiP has a power output of 20.00dBm, a frequency range of 862 to 1020MHz, and a 790nA sleep current. On the breakout board side, the module features an MCP73831 Li-Po battery-charging IC, charging status LED, and a 3.3V ultra-low lq LDO.
Rounding out the breakout board are a USB connector (with protection/filtering circuit), a TPS3839 low-voltage battery cut-off IC, 0.75A resettable fuse, user LED, reset button, SMA and u.FL antenna connectors, and a 10-pin SWD program header.
It should be noted at this point that the TinyLoRa development board is offered with several soldering options available — TinyLoRa RF module and SMA connector both soldered,TinyLoRa RF module unsoldered and SMA connector soldered, and TinyLoRa RF module soldered and SMA connector unsoldered.
On the software end, MakerTronika Labs recommends Atmel Studio V7, or the newly released Mbed OS 5.10, which provides support for the SAML21J18A SiP. If users choose to go the Atmel Studio route, MakerTronika has an instruction guide they put together to correctly set up the ASF (Atmel Software Framework) environment. The company is currently offering the TinyLoRa RF development board on Tindie for $39.95 and has uploaded all the design and fabrication files to their GitHub page for those looking to recreate the build.