A low power GNSS module with outstanding accuracy – the ZOE-M8B from Alpha Micro

The ZOE-M8B module

Alpha Micro Components announced the availability of the u-blox ZOE-M8B, a GNSS System-in-Package (SiP) that looks set to revolutionise small battery powered consumer devices, including portables and wearables. The ZOE-M8B SiP offers the best possible balance of power consumption and positional accuracy in its class.

This module opens up a new world of applications for manufacturers, because it enables innovative battery powered devices that can provide very accurate and responsive GNSS positioning without harming user experience or performance. Some potential application areas include devices for fitness, health monitoring, and personal tracking.

“Achieving that difficult balance of size, weight and power is obviously a key challenge for small battery powered devices like smart watches, wearables and some IoT products. Keeping a small device’s footprint and power budget under control is always a headache for designers and developers,” said Nick Robins, technical director, Alpha Micro Components.

“If you’ve ever struggled to keep device size and power within your target specs, then you should probably take a close look at the ZOE-M8B, because it’s designed to solve exactly these problems, all in one module, thanks to its tiny form factor and power consumption that can go as low as 12mW.”

Despite its diminutive dimensions – only 4.5 x 4.5 x 1.0 mm – the ZOE-M8B module still manages to integrate critical features for stability, reliability and accuracy, such as a temperature compensated crystal oscillator (TCXO), SAW filter and low noise amplifier (LNA), along with the GNSS receiver. But how well does the ZOE-M8B’s high level of integration and small size translate into real world implementations? Very well indeed, with supporting external components, the total PCB footprint of the ZOE-M8B is only about 50% larger than the tiny module’s solo footprint.

This module’s unique combination of ultra-low-power operation and high performance is largely due to u-blox’s proprietary Super-E mode of operation, which automatically adjusts the power consumed by the system components to only provide power when and where it is needed.

Super-E is the secret ingredient that provides great accuracy without excessive power consumption. In practice, the ZOE-M8B’s power draw is as low as 12 mW during instantaneous tracking, and the module typically averages only 25 mW in most situations, including urban environments.

Comment on this article below or via Twitter: @IoTNow_OR @jcIoTnow

FEATURED IoT STORIES

9 IoT applications that will change everything

Posted on: September 1, 2021

Whether you are a future-minded CEO, tech-driven CEO or IT leader, you’ve come across the term IoT before. It’s often used alongside superlatives regarding how it will revolutionize the way you work, play, and live. But is it just another buzzword, or is it the as-promised technological holy grail? The truth is that Internet of

Read more

Which IoT Platform 2021? IoT Now Enterprise Buyers’ Guide

Posted on: August 30, 2021

There are several different parts in a complete IoT solution, all of which must work together to get the result needed, write IoT Now Enterprise Buyers’ Guide – Which IoT Platform 2021? authors Robin Duke-Woolley, the CEO and Bill Ingle, a senior analyst, at Beecham Research. Figure 1 shows these parts and, although not all

Read more

CAT-M1 vs NB-IoT – examining the real differences

Posted on: June 21, 2021

As industry players look to provide the next generation of IoT connectivity, two different standards have emerged under release 13 of 3GPP – CAT-M1 and NB-IoT.

Read more

IoT and home automation: What does the future hold?

Posted on: June 10, 2020

Once a dream, iot home automation is slowly but steadily becoming a part of daily lives around the world. In fact, it is believed that the global market for smart home automation will reach $40 billion by 2020.

Read more
RECENT ARTICLES

World Economic Forum launches toolbox of solutions to accelerate decarbonisation in cities

Posted on: September 23, 2021

With the percentage of people living in cities projected to rise to 68% by 2050, resulting in high energy consumption, greater infrastructure needs and, carbon emissions, cities have a critical role to play in the race to reach net zero. To help address this challenge, the World Economic Forum, is releasing iteration of its Toolbox of Solutions,

Read more

Laserfiche announces launch of cloud document management and process automation solution

Posted on: September 23, 2021

Laserfiche announced the availability of Laserfiche Cloud in the Europe, Middle East and Africa (EMEA) region. The SaaS provider of intelligent content management and business process automation’s cloud offering delivers an innovative and trusted system for securely managing content and automating business processes across the enterprise.

Read more