The new module has been based on Nordic Semiconductor’s nRF5340 Bluetooth low energy chipset. This is the first Nordic chipset to use a powerful Arm Cortex M33 dual core MCU – NORA-B1 has been developed for performance-oriented applications.
NORA-B1 takes advantage of the chipset’s dual core MCU, allowing it to handle high-performance applications without the need for an external host processor. One low-power-optimized core can manage network connectivity, while the second high performance core runs the device application.
Arm TrustZone is integrated to provide enhanced security, and allow a trusted execution environment by separating secure and non-secure Flash, RAM, peripherals, and GPIOs. The module also features Arm CryptoCell-312 to provide hardware-accelerated cryptography and, combined with the key management unit (KMU), enables a root of trust and secure key storage.
“Nordic Semiconductor’s nRF5340 chipset brings Bluetooth-enabled connectivity to a new, more demanding class of applications, not only in terms of computing power but also in terms of security,” says Pelle Svensson, Senior Product Marketing Manager, Short Range Radio, at u-blox. “We designed the NORA-B1 to make it easy for product developers to tap into the opportunities it offers.”
Small, extensively qualified, and globally certified, NORA-B1 provides the Bluetooth 5.2 feature set to wireless applications, while supporting ZigBee and Thread. LE audio, which can concurrently stream multiple channels with lower power consumption than existing technology, brings a major upgrade to audio data transmission.
The new NORA module has a footprint of only 10.4 x 14.3 x 1.8 mm. It provides ease of routing and reduces host board complexity. The module will come in several antenna variants, including a compact PCB antenna. It is qualified for an extended temperature range up to 105 °C and can operate reliably in harsh environments.