Norway’s sole independent chipmaker, Nordic Semiconductor, is a small company with an outsized following. Nordic pioneered ultra-low power wireless solutions way back in 2002, but it took another ten years before the company was widely noticed. That’s when it launched the nRF51 Series of ultra-low power wireless Systems-on-Chip (SoCs) with embedded protocol stacks. The device family, built around a 32-bit ARM Cortex M0 processor core and available in various memory and feature configurations, was quickly embraced by the maker community who saw it as a convenient way to add Bluetooth capability to boards such as the Arduino. It is now the de facto choice for such applications of the Bluetooth Smart standard.
Today, Nordic Semiconductor offers a range of ultra low power 2.4GHz ISM band wireless solutions, including RF system-on-chips and transceiver ICs, protocol stacks, development tools, and reference designs – all in support of low cost, battery-powered applications that use short range, low data rate wireless connectivity.
And now the company has come up with a fun and easy way to try out its flagship devices: The nRF51 DK is a single-board development kit for Bluetooth Smart, ANT and 2.4GHz proprietary applications using the nRF51 Series SoC. The best part may be that it is hardware compatible with the Arduino Uno Revision 3 standard, making it possible to use compatible 3rd-party shields with the kit.
It supports the standard Nordic Software Development Tool-chain as also the ARM mbed cloud-based IDE and tool-chain with a broad selection of open-source software libraries. The kit allows access to all I/O and interfaces via connectors and has 4 LEDs and 4 user-programmable buttons.
Watch Nordic’s John Leonard as he reveals what makes the development kit such an alluring device for development