Getting started with ST Murata LoRaWan board

ST Micro-Electronics is providing a development board with a Murata CMWX1ZZABZ-091 chip. This device is a module containing a STM32L0 chip (192Kb of Flash / 20Kb of RAM) associated with a Semtech SX1276 radio chip. This module can be used as a SoC for developing LoRaWan IoT devices. The Semtech chip is also capable of Sigfox. This module is a bit expensive but it is actually the one allowing LoRaWan and Sigfox communication in any of the RCZ zones.

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Send Sigfox messages with STM32 + S2LP

STM32 solution for using Sigfox is actually one of the best offer on the market has the solution is powerful, low consumption and allows global coverage with the use of the last Sigfox library versions including Monarq, Bubble… Different module providers are actually designing solutions based on this platform.

In this post we are going to see how to configure the STM32 platform, starting from a STM32L053 devkit plus a S2LP extension. Using a eclipse/gcc environment. The environment installation is described in this post about installing Eclipse for STM32.

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STM32 and Low Power Mode

STM32 ARM MCU are proposing different low power mode for saving energy when running IoT on battery. Some basic example of low power are delivered with the SDK as part of CubeMx solution but these example are not really complete, not well documented and in my point of view difficult to use in a Fresh new project. Basically my current feeling with STM32 is these guy are pretty good to write thesis on how to do magic stuff with the MCU, writing hundreds of pdf pages about really detailed stuff but they are really bad for providing some line of code to illustrate this valuable content with something practicable you can use on the go. So after spending a week working on a working and understood example of low power code, I’ll share with you the result of this work…

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STM32 and Arduino, working with a custom board

Arduino is supporting STM32 platform and after following the installation steps, you can easily work with the st-microelectronics development kit.

In the real life you need to create a specific setup once your prototype is transformed into a custom board. This setup redefines the pin mapping, the target MCU and needs to refine the firmware transfer method as you will use and external STLINK programmer.

In this post we are going to see the different step for doing this.

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Arduino for STM32

In a previous post I explained how to getting started with STM32 with classical Eclipse or Keil environments. These environments are very cool for starting from scratch in designing firmware. That said, you have to recreate a lot of basic functions and libraries to create your firmware.

On the other hand, the Arduino community is proposing a lot a existing libraries and a development framework with a large number of supported features. The STM32 community looks active and that’s a good way to quickly create advanced firmware.

That said there is different point blocking in my point of view for using Arduino as a professional environment:

  • Outside of the core libs and some nice one, most of the lib are badly written
  • The official editor is a mess if you manage more than 3 files…
  • Writing libraries with official editor is… “impossible”

For this reason, in this tuto, I’ll use Visual Code Studio¬† to see if the 2 last point can be solved. Regarding the first point, there is nothing better than using well coded libraries and rewrite (and share) the badly written one.

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