Laird Unveils Bluetooth 5.1 Module for Long Range Industrial IoT Applications

Wireless solutions expert, Laird Connectivity, has released the new BL653 embedded Bluetooth 5.1 module series which enables industrial OEMs to implement long range Bluetooth LE applications in the harshest industrial operating environments. It is a complete multi-protocol embedded wireless offering with exceptional processing capability, Bluetooth 5.1 direction finding with angle of arrival (AoA) and angle of departure (AoD), and extended temperature range ideal for extremely challenging RF environments and wireless industrial IoT applications.

Powered by the Nordic nRF52833 silicon, the small form factor BL653 modules and development kits provide a secure, robust BLE and Cortex-M4F CPU for any OEM's product design. The BL653 provides maximum development flexibility with programming options for the Nordic SDK or Zephyr RTOS, a simple, intuitive AT command set, or Laird Connectivity's own smartBASIC environment.

The BL653 series brings out all nRF52833 hardware features and capabilities including USB access, up to +8 dBm transmit power, and up to 5.5 V supply range. In addition to the stand-out Bluetooth 5.1 features, it also has the potential to be Bluetooth 5.2 capable and has hardware support for NFC and 802.15.4 (Thread and Zigbee). It enables industrial applications that were previously challenged in supporting wireless connectivity. With Bluetooth meshing capabilities, OEMs can create wireless mesh networks, which extend the reach of messages by relaying them from node to node in a large group of connected devices.

Mesh networks are well suited for smart lighting and factory automation applications, which also benefit from the BL653's enhanced operating temperature range (up to 105°C). The additional strengths of Bluetooth 5 long range (Coded PHY support) means that Bluetooth signals can travel further and enable wireless communication for constrained, hard-to-reach equipment within factory floors and manufacturing plants. These enhanced capabilities of the BL653 now open up industrial equipment such as pumps, valves, and drives for wireless connectivity.

The BL653 also boasts robust security, a small footprint, and modular FCC, IC, CE, RCM, MIC, and Bluetooth SIG approvals, which extend to an OEM's design with no new testing for the fastest route to production.

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