Conexio Stratus

A tiny, powerful, versatile cellular-IoT prototyping platform with out-of-the-box connectivity

Nov 17, 2021

Project update 3 of 11

Getting Started Guides

by Rajeev Piyare

Getting started

So far Conexio Stratus kit has been backed by IoT enthusiasts from all over the globe. We are humbled and excited and can’t wait to get our devices out to you folks.

In this week’s update, we will show you the steps to get up and running with the ZephyrRTOS on the Conexio Stratus kit. Please note these steps may slightly change as we finalize our content for the Stratus kit.

A versatile board such as Stratus needs a versatile operating system. Therefore, to get the full functionality out of the device, Stratus relies on the nRF Connect SDK that bundles the ZephyrRTOS. The Zephyr Project strives to deliver the best-in-class RTOS for connected resource-constrained devices, and is built to be secure and safe. Developers using ZephyrRTOS are able to easily tailor a solution to meet their needs using a true open source project with hardware, developer tools, sensors, and device drivers. Security enhancements with Zephyr OS enable the simple implementation of device management, connectivity stacks, and file systems.

We have prepared a full walk-through tutorial on our website, and a tutorial for the lovers. These tutorials guide you through installation and setting up the essential toolchains required to compile and flash your first application onto the Stratus kit. For those who are already familiar with ZephyrRTOS and nRF Connect SDK, this will be a breeze for you. Nonetheless, as promised, we will provide all the sample applications in our git repo so you can started with the onboard sensors, GPS, connecting to the cloud, sending and visualizing your data, remote debugging, running machine learning inferences, and much more using the Stratus device. Similar tutorials will follow every week covering different aspects of the hardware and firmware. Stay tuned!

Stratus compatibility with nRF Connect for VS Code

Early in the summer, when we started developing our Conexio Studio tool, we were not aware that the Nordic Semiconductor team was also working on their own version of the extension for VS Code, nRF Connect for VS Code for programming and debugging Nordic chipsets. Nevertheless, this validated we were on the right path and there is a need for such tools. Therefore, to make Zephyr-based application development a breeze, the Stratus board is also compatible with the newly released nRF Connect SDK extension for the VS Code. Please refer to our previous tutorial on how to get started with nRF Connect for VS Code and its powerful features. Our tutorial this week also covers how to add the existing Stratus sample applications to the nRF Connect for VS Code, and compile, flash and debug your applications right from the Visual Studio Code.

Other fun experiments with Stratus

We have also been trying and testing out different applications on the Stratus kit. In the first clip, you will see the Stratus kit powered entirely using the solar panel, without any batteries or capacitors connected. This experiment was conducted to demonstrate the low-power feature of this kit. Although for actual deployments one should consider connecting batteries for more reliable operation.

In the second experiment, we enhanced the Stratus board with wireless charging capabilities. Since the Stratus board already comes with an efficient energy harvesting and management PMIC, it can be connected to different DC power sources for battery charging such as solar or QI chargers (as long as the input voltage does not exceed 5 V).

We just wanted to share these with you so that, hopefully, they’ll pique your interest in developing something unique using the Stratus kit yourself.

If you have any comments or suggestions, we would love to hear from you.

Thank you and see you next week!

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