Dialog Semiconductor plc has released a new Wireless Ranging (WiRa) Software Development Kit (SDK) that adds highly accurate and reliable distance measurement capabilities to its DA1469x family of BLE SoCs. The new software allows point-to-point wireless distance measurement, enabling accurate tracing capabilities, to ensure safe working environments as businesses plan to reopen during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Dialog explained that “current Bluetooth Low Energy market solutions for distance measurement and positioning are based on measuring the strength or power of the received radio signal, known as Received Signal Strength Indicator (RSSI) measurements.”
But the received power measurements may be inherently flawed due to the sensitivity of objects in the radio path that are blocking or reflecting the radio signals, added Dialog.
Dialog’s Wireless Ranging SDK leverages a proprietary radar-like implementation for improved distance measurement accuracy between BLE-connected devices. By interweaving BLE data packets with constant tone frequency exchanges, said Dialog, the DA1469x on-chip 2.4-GHz radio generates the signals needed for phase-based ranging.
The high-resolution on-chip sampling of radio waves provides high-quality IQ samples that form the input for distance determination. It also uses data-processing algorithms to filter the data for noise, interference, and reflections to produce the shortest over-the-air signal path length as an accurate distance output.
The BLE-compliant stack and WiRa software implementation do not require hardware adaptations or an external host processor, which ensures the coexistence between the Bluetooth communication and the distance measurement process, said Dialog.
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