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25 Feb, 2020

Part-1 Wave Phenomenon, Antennas & Radiation - Introduction

Part 1: Wave Phenomenon, Antennas & Radiation - Theory and Practice
Introduction - Setting The Atmosphere For The Series

Excellence is not a gift but a skill that takes practice.  We do not act rightly because we are excellent, in fact we achieve excellent by acting rightly. - Plato (428/427 - 348/347 BCE)

Our human species resides on a cloud of knowledge between total knowledge at the top of the scale and the absolute basics at the bottom of the scale always exploring the constraints that hold us from expanding those boundaries.  This series explores the many ways to represent physical phenomenon, a direct simple represenation mathematically or a relational similar representation that easily becomes complex.  Many of the solutions in this series are based on convenience with the end result being the expansion of the current knowledge base.

Wave_Index Quick Links

What we want to cover in Part 1:
Starting a new blog series for us always means setting a solid foundation of reference for the series to transfer knowledge to our readers.  The intent and expectations for this series is the same for all our series - it is a living publication and will be updated and revised as we receive requests and contributions to the series.
Enjoy the series - Sal Tuzzo

The first blog category presented on BASIL Networks blog was the IoT Core Platform Development Project.  During the IoT Project blog many readers asked if I would do a blog on 5G and Radiation?  My immediate answer is No!  However, when I started to look into the massive amounts of information on the Internet it did not take long to realize that this is a series in itself just on any one of the following: WiFi, Bluetooth, MESH networks, 4G and 5G so here we are creating a separate series.  Our presentation methodology has been very effective so we will continue with our methodology, Overview %u2192 Basic %u2192 Detailed (OBD).  We will be addressing the many sections of wave phenomenon separately to keep the presentations at a reasonable length, design and application details will be presented during the actual hardware design and analysis sections.

Setting the Atmosphere for the Series
Setting the atmosphere for this series is a challenge since it encompasses several fields of interest in engineering technologies and encourages understanding multiple disciplines. However do not get discouraged, this series will as all of our series incorporates the OBD methodology Overview, Basics, Detailed to walk you through a new experience of ever changing field of wireless communications.

Technology Connects Everything; The market introduced listening and camera devices that are able to listen and monitor our movements and issue commands to devices connected to the Internet, not to ignore the smart phones already tracking data.   The things to keep in mind here is for these listening and camera devices the data is going to some third party and being sold to other third party marketers to send advertising on the go for "profit".  That means that your gestures and voices are stored and shared with multiple unknown third parties.  Now think of ordering products through this audio/visual device and giving personal information to these unknown third party data gatherers.  Oh by the way make sure the TV in the bedroom is really off, oops!

Now enter the Internet of Things, everything interconnected and beyond with IPv6 huge addressing capability, security and privacy is gaining high visibility as the predominate issue.  The privacy and security issue is not just for the home environment is extends to the industry, from transportation, retail, marketing, engineering and more.  The world of access through IoT sensors of all types, video, audio, control networks like traffic lights, electric grids and municipal utilities that monitor and control the safety of our everyday lives.  Ok, do not look at this as a Gloom and Doom issue, but as a challenge to insure privacy, security and safety of your (PII) personal identifiable information.

A brief introduction to this new series "Wavelength, Radiation and Antennas" is all about wireless communications and the radiated energy it transmits.  Radiation theory is basically broken down to two broad frequency bands or wavelength bands 'types', Non-Ionizing and Ionizing radiation.  All radiation is harmful to the human body if concentrated at high levels.

The Ionizing radiation bands effect the human DNA directly, Ultraviolet, X-Rays Gamma Rays which is why humans wear radiation badges when working in areas where radiation equipment is used.  The frequency range is 1014 Hz to 1021 Hz and beyond.   There is a "visible" waveband that is a small waveband from 380 to 740 nanometers or 430-770 Terahertz 1THz =  1012 Hz = 1000Giga-Hertz).  The non-ionizing radiation effects mostly living organs and have caused various types of mutations within these organs.  we will cover that later in the series.

Lets categorize these radiation fields, there are three Ionizing field groups, Ultraviolet: Energetic Light, X-Rays: Penetrating Radiation and Gamma Rays: Nuclear Energy." There are four Non-Ionizing radiation field groups, Radio Waves: Communications, Microwaves: Data and Heat, Infrared Waves: Invisible Heat, Visible Light Waves. The frequency of the Non-Ionizing band is everything below the Ionizing radiation band 0 HZ to just short of 1015 Hz.  The references for Radiation Waves are Wikipedia Electromagnetic Spectrum and NASA Website on Electromagnetic Spectrum.

Wireless Communication Networks
Now the unspoken good bad and ugly of any wireless network period.  As I stated before, all companies have a right to monitor their product usage, especially if there product entails Power, Time, and Bandwidth as product entities.  Encouraging the monitoring of competitive products brings the best results in a competitive free market environment.  What we also encourage is all products in use by the populous is the accountability for those products safety, privacy and security!

I have been following Bluetooth, WiFi, 3G, 4G and 5G network development for a some time and would not comment on it until there were substantial facts to present, vetted by recognized accountable scientists and medical professionals with undeniable proof of the results.  Well here is the 3rd annual update to our blog about the IoT and wireless communications in a new series called "Wavelength, Radiation & Antennas".

OK, the last thing we want here is another global controversy, lets stick to the scientific facts backed by absolute data only, to date (December 1, 2019) over 300 Scientists and doctors in 41 nations, along with a few hundred dead birds and cases of humans that suffered from disorientation and other medical ailments including cancer of the brain and other organs included in their published research findings on radiation from wireless technologies, vetted at several information websites, Wi-CancerCell Phones 5G Network Health RisksEMF WISE and the list goes on.

For companies that incorporate CDMA and other leased bands for their monitoring a list of cell towers in the area by physical address location Antenna Search by Physical Address Location, or by Provider Technology 3G,4G, 5G etc.  Antenna Search Globally by Provider CellMapper.  There are many more websites and some sites have been blocked from the connections that we use to vet information, which generally means that even registered businesses that purchase bandwidth with a fixed open IP address are blocked at the will of the Internet Provider.

OK, we went through this in previous presentations with 3G, 4G networks as stated in the publications, since 3G and 4G antennas are greater distances from residential areas.  There are several in the area where our servers are here, the closest one in the area of our lab is about  0.27 (1415 ft - 431 meters) away and is 200 feet high directed to cover a 1/2 mile area or more and far away from a direct concentration, however, there are a few buildings that are within 100 feet of the base of the antenna.  Finally there is conclusive diagnostic clinical evidence of health related cases with the wearable devices incorporating 3G and 4G, now a fact, from the released reports as well as scientific studies and is no longer an isolated issue just to a specific location.

What does this have to do with the IoT development project?
Yeh, Lots of questions still - OK, we have been living with wireless radio communications an cell phones for well over 60 years now and there have been some health issues as with every new technology that comes on board.  A problem with relating illness with a conclusive source is the variances in lifestyles as well as conditional parameters of use, diet etc. of all the individuals that use them.  So let me try and break this down to understand this a bit better.

To start I have many years in Pulsed NMR (Nuclear Resonance Spectroscopy, Dual Beam IR (Infrared Spectrophotometry) sonar, ultrasonic's and frequency modulation techniques used in the analog and digital world, (Whoopee, so what does that have to do with the facts?).  So with that whoopee button and the fact that many IoT applications will incorporate some from of wireless communications which has to "radiate" the signal this raises the concern that our device must be in a safe operating area as not to cause harm.   So my research went in a different direction for a while in order to gather the current scientific facts and data to insure our device will operate safely in these environments.

The following are vetted data from scientific studies on radiation effects and a safe amounts, yeh, yeh I hear it now,  "THERE ARE NO SAFE AMOUNTS OF RADIATION", this is true however, we are subjected to radiation just walking down the street, hopefully, only small enough amounts that the human body over powers and neutralizes for a given time frame.  Radiation effects on the human body are accumulative, the issue is how fast will the human body replenish the damage cells and stop the replications/mutation process.

Resonance and Its Effects on Matter:
All matter has what is called a resonance (parallel or series) frequency that will (absorb, pass through or reflect) energy waves, this includes all life as we know life that is a breathing biological "earth" entity.  Solids also have a resonance frequency as shown many times by the old breaking a glass with a sound-wave experiment.  So, if the energy is reflective or passive when it comes in contact with an objects surface there will be very little effect on the internal structure past the objects surface, hence: it either bounces off or just passes through the object without any absorption of the transmitted energy.   Just like the glass will only break if the resonant frequency is that of the glasses material structure to absorb energy.

At resonance the energy is absorbed the structure starts to vibrate, when enough energy is absorbed within the glass structure the structure becomes compromised and literally shakes itself apart and shatters.  Now keeping this concept in mind and applying it to biological life form structures is where we get similar disruptions with how the biological structures react to this intrusion of energy.

Biological's and Energy Absorption
Low power radiation produced by low power RF fields seems to be passive or is handled by the biological's anti-intrusion mechanism, that is until we start to focus the energy, like 24/7 connected wireless cell phone headsets while we holster the cell phone on our side day in and day out.  Because of the low power this would take years on some people to create a health issue if any depending on the individual diets, exercise etc., yes, diet is an effective means for neutralizing small doses of radiation poisoning, do an Internet search on Iodine and other minerals that the body absorbs.

Now the 4G and 5G broad band network, base frequencies for 3G range 2GHz to 8GHz, while 5G range 3GHz to 300GHz.  As we see there is a wide overlap of frequencies that are used to define the range characteristics of the technology as defined in   Hence: 4G is incorporated as part of the 5G network to address various bandwidths within the communications range.   OK, now, when you start to get beyond reasonable RF frequencies, radiation tends to have a greater effect on the biological's of a living organism.   One of the major differences is 5G has a much shorter transmission range than 4G and require more antennas to cover the same range.

Electromagnetic Absorption by Water  and "wait for it" --  the body is made up of about 60% to 80% water variant of species, human to animals - Plasma is that pale yellow mixture of 90% water and the rest proteins and salt that make up 50% of the blood.  Plasma is the traffic highway that forms a conductive conduit for product delivery to all the organs, yes, including the brain - oops!.  The real issue arises with the 5G channel frequencies that are used within the Gigahertz frequency ranges of the technology,  the UHF, SHF and EHF Bands 2GHz to 100GHz that makes up the 2MHz to 4GHz digital bandwidth modulation schemes that fall in the [RF, EF, EMF] band.  These Basebands are modulated with a variety of schemes [EGDE, EGPRS, WCDMA, HSPA, HSPA , CDMA2000, WiMAX, LTE, LTE-Advanced, to name a few, which are controlled digitally being carried on the higher RF base frequency which generate many harmonic frequencies as part of the waveforms being transmitted.  These modulation frequencies add to the transmission energy fields being absorbed or reflected that pass through the air in all directions.

The intent of 5G technology because of its limited range of under 1000 Feet is to put a focused RF base station every 10 or 12 blocks on these transmission power line poles.  This is where most of the 5G experimentation has been performed prior to its official release and where much of the health issues have been researched and published.  For those of you that are interested in radiation and the body and how frequency and power play a roll in biological cells a great read is the research done by Dr. Royal Raymond Rife  original frequency to organ list and the Consolidated Annotated Frequency List  that shows the effects frequency modulation and radiation go hand in hand to disrupting biological cell structures and organs.

OK, nice introduction but what does this have to do with our IoT Platform Project?
The IoT core platform will incorporate wireless technology and will be reference to the new blog series Wavelength, Radiation & Antennas.  Designing wireless products entails a bit more research than that of direct connect (wired) devices.

Lets Get Started - Basics:
OK, lets set a Basic foundation of Facts/Givens that this series will reference, also for those that are very new to wave phenomenon as to set a solid foundation to relate as we move on through the series.  "If you wish to understand the universe, think of energy, frequency and vibration." - Nikola Tesla.   There two types of laws in the universe, OK, no I have not been to the universe but I am here on earth and that is in the universe, so lets move on.   These two Universal Laws are: Immutable and Mutable.  That easy enough right?  Immutable Laws are laws that can not be changed over time, unable to be changed which are absolute.  You remember growing up and your mom says "NO."Cool   Mutable Laws are laws that are liable to change either completely or slightly and effect our very existence, you know when you talk back to your parents and you get a response " keep it up and you will experience pain".Laughing

Frequency, Time, Wavelength:
To start lets look at some simple concepts we use regularly.  Frequency, which is the rate of which an event happens or for a waveform to travel one period of time where the vibration or amplitude of the waveform is at the same point from where it started as shown in Figure 1.0 below.

Figure 1.0  Sinewave  Parameters

Frequency = 1/Time and is expressed in Hertz (Hz) or Cycles per Second (cps).   Wavelength is the distance one period travels and is generally expressed in, m (meters) which is all referenced to the speed of light relative to inside the atmosphere of the planet earth which is 2.998x108 meters/second and is given the label C, Therefore the wavelength of any frequency is defined by the equation below.

λ = c / f
{ (Lambda in meters)   λ =  c ( Speed of Light in Meters/Seconds) divided by f ( frequency in Hz ) }

Wave Phenomenon, Antennas, Radiation theory, analysis and real world applications are an on-going field with lots of bits and pieces of information on the interest.   Several Universities like MIT in Massachusetts offer all their courses on line free and if you wan credit it is a fraction of the tuition for the in-class course.  To maintain the scope of this blog we will only cover a few types of antennas that are used for our IoT project. Bluetooth, WiFi, Cell Phones and Cell Towers 4G and the latest 5G base antennas.

USA Frequency Allocation Chart:
The range of frequencies we are exposed to on a daily basis in the communications bands range from a couple of hertz to 300 Gigahertz (300,000,000,000 Hz).  The object of this series is to understand the different bands, where they are used then show how to analyze the radiation from the sources like WiFi routers, laptops, base antennas and smart phones and other devices.  Figure 1.1 below shows the United States Radio Frequency Allocation bands as of January 2016.  The chart is updated as technology changes and frequency bands are reassigned.

OK the funny looking chart below categorizes the primary and secondary bands,  all Capital Letters are Primary bands and 1st Capital with lower case letters are Secondary band allocations for the United States and is available to anyone for downloading.  The code of federal regulations Telecommunications Cfr Title 47 part 70-79 2019 is also available and is suggested for developers to insure that the product is in compliance.  The last one BASIL Networks purchased was parts Cfr 47 parts 20-69 Oct 1981 since the entire Cfr may be accessed on the web.

This chart and other documentation are available at the U.S. Department of Commerce January 2016, Frequency allocation chart  which shows a point in time of allotted frequencies that are in our air space at any one time depending on location on the planet.   It is recommended to download the table since it gives the exact frequencies allocated as they are reassigned and new ones allocated at  [PDF]Current allocated Frequency Table for each band.

Figure 1.1  United States Radio Frequency Allocation Spectrum January 2016
Click on the chart to download the PDF file enlarged view of the chat (42.00" x 26.88")

As we see from the communication frequency allocation chart that from 0-300 GHz (300,000,000,000) there are many bands that are allocated for many purposes.  The Allocation bands change as technology changes and are updated and published in table form above link.   The position of the radio frequency spectrum is shown in Figure 1.2 below referenced to the above chart and associate table.

Figure 1.2  United States Radio Frequency Allocation Spectrum Position

Frequency Band Standards Groups
OK - one last bit of basic information before we get started and that is the names and acronyms assigned to the different bands, as shown in Table 1.0 below.  Some of the confusion is that there are several frequency bands that are associate with different countries and they are assigned different letter acronyms to represent specific bands.  The confussion is that the bands overlap each other depending on the accepted terminologies for the selected country or region.  The Frequency Allocation groups that label the frequency bands in their own sand box are listed below.

Standards Group Name Band Designations Frequency Range
EU - European Union A - M 1Hz    to 100GHz
NATO - North American Treaty Organization A - M 1Hz    to 100GHz
US ECM - United States of America A - M 1Hz    to 100GHz
IEEE -Institute of Electrical and Electronic Engineers HF,VHF,UHF,L,S,C,X,Ku,K,Ka,
3MHz to 300GHz
ITU - International Telecommunications Union ELF,SLF,ULF,VLF,LF,MF,
3Hz    to 3THz

Table 1.0  Frequency Band Naming for Different Communications Organizations

ITU International Telecommunications Union Frequency Bands:
As the frequency allocations advanced it becomes evident that a standard is required to encourage some type of categorization of the frequency bands and the allocations of them.  For this series we will use the ITU (International Telecommunications Union)  based in Geneva, Switzerland since it includes the cooperation of many countries and it will give us a reference point when analyzing radiation and wave transmission. More information on the ITU is here cation_Union

Table 1.1 below list the frequency ranges assigned to the ITU bands.  As reassignment of the actual frequency for specific applications as technology advances changes will be reflected in the [PDF]Current allocated Frequency Table.

ITU  Radio Communications Frequency Bands
BAND Designation Frequency Range Hertz Wavelength Meters Application
ELF (Extremely Low Frequency) 3 Hz to 30 Hz 100'000 km to 10'000 km Submarine Comm
SLF (Super Low Frequency) 30 Hz to 300 Hz 10'000km to 1'000km Submarine Comm
ULF (Ultra Low Frequency) 300 Hz to 3000 Hz 1'000km to 100km Submarine Comm, within Mines
VLF (Very Low Frequency) 3 kHz to 30 kHz 100km to 10km Maritime Radio, Navigation
LF  (Low Frequency) 30 kHz to 300 kHz 10km to 1km Maritime Radio, Navigation
MF (Medium Frequency) 300 kHz to 3000 kHz 1km to 100m AM Radio, Shortwave Radio
HF (High Frequency) 3 MHz to 30 MHz 100m to 10m Shortwave Radio
VHF (Very High Frequency 30 MHz to 300 MHz 10m to 1m VHF TV, FM Radio
UHF (Ultra High Frequency) 300 MHz to 3000 MHz 1m to 10cm PMUHF TV,Mobil Phones,GPS,WiFi,4G
SHF (Super High Frequency) 3 GHz to 30 GHz 10cm to 1cm Satellite Comm, WiFi, 5G
EHF (Extra High Frequency) 30 GHz to 300 GHz 1cm to 1mm Radio Astronomy, Satellite, 5G
THF (Tremendously High Frequency) 300 GHz to 3000 GHz 1mm to 0.1mm  
Not Considered Part of the Radio Communications Bands {yet}
BAND Designation Frequency Range Hertz Wavelength Meters Application
INFRARED 300 GHz to 430 THz 1mm to 700nm  
VISIBLE 430 THz to 790 THz 700nm to 400nm  
ULTRAVIOLET 790 THz to 30 PHz 400nm to 10nm  
XRAY 30 PHz to 30 EHz 10nm to 0.01nm  
GAMMA-RAY > 30 EHz < 0.01nm  
COSMIC-RAY   Interstella Space Medium (ISM)  
MICROWAVE 300 MHz to 300 GHz    
LW (Long Wave) 153 kHz to 279 kHz    
MW (Medium Wave) 531 kHz to 1620 kHz  
SW (Short Wave) 2310 kHz to 25820 kHz    

Table 1.1  International Telecommunications Union (ITU) Frequency Bands

Energy Distribution Concepts Overview
Before discussing details about energy and radiation theory it is a good practice to look at the conceptual overviews that are used throughout the industry.   Figure 1.3 below shows the fundamental concept of radiant energy distribution in free space that follows the Inverse-Square Law that the further away from the source of the energy GM the lower the energy level.  Figure 1.3 is for ideal free space and the source radiates energy geometrically as a sphere and is a good place to start.  So, for the sphere as the radiant energy travels the energy decreases by the inverse of the square of the distance, why? because if the distance is two time the radius of the sphere the energy has to cover 4 times the area.  This is the defiinition of the Inverse-Square Law   So by the definition of the Inverse-Square Law the Intensity for a given area at a distance from the source is defined by I = GM / R².

Figure 1.3  Inverse Square Law - Visible Spectrum

So if we analyze the entire sphere with a radius R where a spheres area is defined by [Area]with a geometric source S = alt radiating around the sphere, then by the Inverse-Square Law the Intensity of the radiant energy at the surface of the sphere is defined by Equation 1.0 below.

alt   alt      Equation 1.0  Intensity at surface of sphere at Radius R

So if R = 1 meter the Intensity at the 2R surface of the sphere from the source GM as a percentage by definition is I = 1 / Distant² of the source GM which yields 1/4 of the source energy or 25% of the source GM.  A quick check of the equation labels for the energy being watts of power yields [watt/ meter*meter = w/m².  If the source GM = 1 Watt, then the radiant energy at 2R would be 1/2² = 1/4 = 0.25 Watts/meter-squared = 25 mW/m².  As we see the radiant energy is reduced by the inverse square of the distance.  OK, that was simple at least for the ideal free space environment.

The introduction to this series presents an overall view of just how wireless transmissionof energy interacts with all matter.  The Overview presents some basic of energy transmission without getting into advanced matematics in order to understand the basic concepts to use as a foundation as the series progresses.  At this point we are able to understand that energy transmission in free space does not maintain its energy level but decreases as it travels farther from its original source by the Inverse-Square Law.  From all the different organizations that have selected names for different frequency bands we see that many overlap so in order to maintain consistence the ITU - International Telecommunications Union frequency band identifications are used.  The foundation of names and frequency bands and the Inverse-Square Law of radiant energy in free space.

There are many other parameters that have to be added to this simple Inverse-Square Law where the disruptions in energy transfer by real world obsticals like buildings, reflective materials, wavelength, other energy phenomenon colliding in the same path, the height of the energy source from the ground, the type of energy source being a single rod type antenna or directional antenna being fed with other types of energy sources.

As the series progresses the author, Sal Tuzzo will be available for discussion through the BASIL Networks Contact Form for those that want to apply this series to conduct their own experiments.  I will always be appreciative for the private comments sent through the contact form for suggestions and advice during the development of this series.  This is a growing opportunity for everyone entering into product development as well as a great review for us "well seasoned" in the field to just refresh our human DRAM (Dynamic Random Access Memory).

It is recommended for those that have specific questions on the series to use the BASIL Networks Contact Form to separate them from getting lost in the general comments for each blog presentation.  For all specific design request or contracts please feel free to contact us.


Part 2...n  Preliminary Outline for the series "Basic Wave Phenomenon Antennas & Radiation" -Continued
There are many more Laws of energy transmission in the wireless arena that will be addressed as the series progresses showing the relationships between them and how they relate to the wireless communications as they are applied today.  Energy distribution laws we will address are:  Planks Law,   Stefan-Boltzmann Law,  Maxwell-Boltzmann Distribution Law,  Wien Displacement law,  Emissivity,  Kirchoff's Law,   Lambert's Law also know as the Beer-Lambert Law,  Ampere's Law, Coulomb's Law, Maxwell's Law, Orsted's Law and Biot-Savart's Law.  So as we see there are many theories that have been experimented with however, with all these laws there are still anomalous deviations that seem to fall outside the norm which we will discus later in the series.

Wave_Index Quick Links

The books in these references are my Northeastern University college of engineering text books except for the Ultra-High-Frequency Techniques, that was a gift from a colleague.

Ultra - High - Frequency Techniques (1942  D. Van Nostrand Company)
    J.G. Brainerd,  Professor EE Univ. of Pennsylvania
    Glenn Koehler, Assistant Prof. EE Univ Wisconsin 
    Herbert J. Reigh,  Prof. EE Univ. Illinois
    L.F. Woodruff, Assoc Prof. EE  MIT Massachusetts

Wave Propagation and Antennas (1958 Library of Congress: 58-9431) by George B. Welch Professor of Physics Northeastern University and Professor Hollis S. Baird whom I have had the honor of being one of his students.
Basic Microwaves (1966 Library of Congress: 65-16814) Bernard Berkowitz
Physics (1966 -ISBN: 0 471 71715 0) Robert Resnic and David Halliday Part I
Physics (1960 -Library of Congress: 62-15336) ) Robert Resnic and David Halliday Part II
Fundamentals of Physics  Revised Printing (1974 ISBN 0471-34431-1) Robert Resnic and David Halliday
Signals in Linear Circuits (1974 ISBN 0-395-16971-2) Jose B. Cruz and M.E. Van Vlakenburg

Wikipedia - On-Line Knowledge Center

Publishing this series on a website or reprinting is authorized by displaying the following, including the hyperlink to BASIL Networks, PLLC either at the beginning or end of each part.
BASIL Networks, PLLC - Wave Phenomenon, Antennas & Radiation Part-1 Introduction: (Feb 25, 2020)

For Website Link: cut and past this code:

<p><a href="" target="_blank"> BASIL Networks, PLLC - Wave Phenomenon, Antennas & Radiation Part-1 Introduction: <i>Feb 25, 2020 )</i></a></p>



Sal (JT) Tuzzo - Founder CEO/CTO BASIL Networks, PLLC.
Sal may be contacted directly through this sites Contact Form or
through LinkedIn

3 Nov, 2019

Internet of Things (IoT) Security, Privacy, Safety -Platform Development Project Part-20

Part 20: IoT Core Platform Development;- Peripheral I/O Device Design
The IoT Embedded Core Platform -Peripheral Devices Real World Testing - Continued

"I can't change the direction of the wind, but I can adjust my sails to reach my destination" Jimmy Dean (August 10, 1928-June 13, 2010)

As we stated in past presentations in this series development costs are easily exceeded when the performance expectations and in that case performance requirements are not documented properly or the infamous "TBD".  This forces a direction change "AND" direction changes are commonly not listed as part of  performance expectations.  Sometimes the development "process" is faulty or just plain broken period.  The intent of this series in not to maintain the insanity of over budget development costs but to disrupt it in order to allow the creation of new habits that will give a solid foundation for engineering practices to be successful when starting a development project.

For the new designer that is taking on the learning of CPLD and FPGA design, "Each design completed is experience for the next lever of development."  There are only experiences and techniques that will bring you to the advanced level of applications.

IoT-Index Quick Links

Quick review to set the atmosphere for Part 20:
A lot of information was covered over the past 19 presentations of this series.  The progression from presenting an important explanation of safety, security and privacy of data, Internet basics from real basic to protocol complexities, conceptualizing a project development, presenting the need for secure accurate documentation as well storing that documentation where it is accessible during and after the product development cycle and of course the need to design in security and privacy during the conceptual development of a project.  

For review, the current Core Platform IoT development main focus is two fold, first an educational project development for the entrepreneurial mindset and the project applications of remote sensing and control incorporating safety, security and privacy over a wide range of peripherals including wireless.  This should be kept in mind since we will be designing in some redundancy for reliability and security.

The ITF development Project:
The ITF did create a change in direction, however did not change the desired results, this is not only common in development projects but is some cases required to meet the desired expectations.  The issues here are handling multiple projects, resources available and the changed timeline, just a short change in direction to complete the objective.  A validation that the real time product development process is far from being a linear process from conception to finished product.  

As we see this is a project within itself to show product development direction and expectations where resources are weighted and required for both product development, engineering performance testing and production.  The ADC-CHAN interface was selected since it was a "reuse" design and how it is to be modified to fit our application which would represent the standard peripheral interface to the IoT Core Platform CPU peripheral BUS requirements.  Initially presenting part of the Interface Test Fixture (ITF) to handle the remaining peripheral development for the series and continuing on with completing the  Interface Test Fixture (ITF) then go back to completing the ADC-CHAN Analog input design to insure the interface performance expectations.

OK, some information on re-use - With the ADC-CHAN design the reason it was easily presented was because it was a "Re-use" design so all the preliminary design work was completed.  Yes, this was selected with expectations to present the re-use with modifications vs the full design from scratch.  The full design process will be presented for CPLD#2 specifically from scratch to see what is involved with creating the design from start to finish and to review the reuse debate syndrome.  

Remember changing direction overnight does not mean changing goals our the final destination, it is just a better way to insure you will reach the desired destination.  In my years of exposure to the design arena as a designer,troubleshooter and mentor I have had the honor of experiencing innovative and passionate creators to realize that the creative thought process of an individual is not a linear step function, 1, 2, 3 ...N, probably because humans are not robots, that follow a preprogrammed set of processes as some may think of engineers.  The innovation of the human mind subconsciously is always performing scenarios to find the best solution for the task at hand and "developing habits along the way".

Over the past 40 plus years of being involved with product design, research, investigations and management so much has changed incorporating more tools to make manufacturing more controlled, design and development more accessible to all levels while increasing the level of knowledge for society adding more responsibility and accountability and freedom of innovation for individuals to take action and bring their ideas to fruition.

What we want to cover in Part 20:
In Part-16,17, 18 and 19 we addressed the issue of why we should consider testing of the peripherals (Proof of Design) PoD with a prototype build to insure when we interconnect several of the peripherals the throughput required for the applications will be met.  This allows the opportunity to change the development direction from the peripheral point of view if performance expectations become an issue. Developing a test methodology that will be used for testing peripherals for the platform keeping in mind peripheral throughput limitations. These are new habits being developed at a conscience mind set level that will connect to become the default critical thought process during development.  With that stated we will continue moving forward with detailing the Interface Test Fixture (ITF).

The design process in this part includes:

Updating the IPD project documentation for the ITF (Interface Test Fixture) to keep track of the development process, "Documentation is a living process during development", a good habit to make!  The reference for the ITF is the functional block diagram Figure 16.1

Lets Get Started:
Some questions answered from our readers
"What happen to the series?,  "It has been a few months from part 19, are you going to continue the series?  
To answer the above two questions - YES the series will continue.   We own and maintain several on-line servers as well as off-line servers here in the lab and we were in the process of upgrading them to the latest and greatest compliant requirements.  This took longer than planned, HHMMmm I think I said that about product development timing some where, well again we have added another first hand experience to our portfolio. Cool

Are there any sponsors for this series?
All devices for this project have been selected by their specifications and there are no sponsors for any of the components or the designs.  The possibility of sponsors for this project was put on the table for discussion and in order to keep this development purely on component merit the decision was made not to have any advertisement or sponsors for this project.  We also discussed private sponsorship from grant funds however the complexities and timing would have postponed the project for over a year while looking for grant.  We are still open for a grant if the opportunity arises.

Have you decided on any video presentations for this project?
We are still discussing this possibility of a YouTube channel which is  not our first choice or just put the videos directly on one of our servers as an educational series.  BASIL Networks website new addition is a gallery for presentations and videos that we will be posting at the beginning the new year.  For those interested please contact us using the BASIL Networks Contact Form for more information on when this will be available.  All the video creation, editing and processing videos are in place at this time and we are experimenting with several ways to clearly present hardware, firmware and software techniques through a video presentation.

OK, a quick review of the documentation system we will be using, Yes again, Ok I'm sounding like management now, "are we there yet?" - so what does that all mean to this series?  This means that to assist this innovative development process that may change direction even get delayed at times from one development task to another a tracking system should meet the following requirements.

Product design documentation is not only for the designer it is for those that will follow the design when the designer moves on to other projects.  Product development with documentation is the Knowledge Base for growth and the leverage for reuse.

  1. Interactive - by second nature without thought
  2. Flexibility - being able to record changes and additions in real time.  
  3. Development Traceability - development changes that effect several project are easily traced and recorded in each project.
  4. Multiple Project Tracking - This is where we are now - being able to start and track new projects that will eventually interact with the product development at hand, hence: the IoT Core Platform development project.
    So, the ITF Project name given is- Universal_Peripheral_ITF previously
    AND-- We are going to make some more changes, again---

Repetition is the mother of retention,  wait a minute!..., I think I read that somewhere before in a different color. Cool


CPLD#2  I/O DataBUS Interface Registers Block Diagram:
OK, lets take the easy parts first, the Interface Data and Control Registers.  We will assign some tasks for these registers but hold off on assigning any bits or bit pattern until we actually implement then into the transfer sequence of the data.

From Figure 19.3 and Figure 19.4 the name of the registers have been assigned.  What we will create are the register bit widths, register functionality and data load path that defines the input side of the CPLD.  This will allow the flow control for the CPLD functionality.

OK, for those of you that have been following this series, a while back I stated that when you design a product you start from the output of what is desired and work toward the input to insure that you have all the necessary power to insure the transfer of power. This rule applies mainly for power supplies and power amplifiers since the drivers for each stage have to be capable of supplying power not just signal.  In the digital world there are only 1's and 0's and bits so we envision this approach a bit differently. Cool

The approach here is to insure there are enough input bits(pins) available to address all the required registers internal for the data transfer.  Since we defined the max on-board RAM to be 16Meg words, that dictates a 24 bit address.  The question is how do we want to address this data?  There are a few ways to do this, always start from address 0 to a final address specified by a counter register which would be the easiest of the implimentations.  However, looking forward much more control of the memory will be required when we get into the input data transfer mechanism.  Since we have designed these types of high speed interfaces over the years and have improved the process, (A polite way of saying that many shortcommings have been added to the experience port folio), the following register set for the memory data transfer is used as a starting point.

As a general preference rule for registers they are Read/Write type registers whenever possible.  Prior to 1981 before the initial PC was introduced peripherals with registers were always Read/Write.  The R/W gave a mechanism to test out specific logic for functionality. When the PC was introduced and the new associated controllers the read-only and write-only register sets were introduced.  Needless to say the complaints were compounded until some sort of reliability and multi-user programming methodology surfaced.  For software programmers a write only register is a Nightmare on Elm Street to keep track of in a multitasking environment.  OK back to the design.  Figure 20.0 shows the register breakdown of the on-board memory transfer section.

Figure 20.0   CPLD #2 Register Functional Block Diagram

So, as we look at the register block diagram we see that the names have changed on the registers along with a different type of data transfer methodology.  Over the years designing data acquisition interface systems for updating and increasing ROI for capital equipment the following methodologies evolved allowing more control and flexibility to interfacing to the real world.  This modification is from the IBPD system that is approaching its ten year mark so we decided to present the new interface here that includes many of the features of a 16 bit digital logic analyzer as well as a straight digital I/O interface for testing peripherals.  The new additions are variable speed control via a DDS as well as data capture timing to measure propagation delays from BUS enable and data ready enable control lines.   Adding a pattern recognition to trigger data collection assists those oops it failed in the middle of a transfer bugs.

We also added a Start Address Register (SAR) and a Final Address Register (FAR) which allows addressing control for specified window of memory addresses for data transfer.  This type of feature is relatively common among more expensive data acquisition peripherals where multiple channels are designed in.  The SAR and FAR methodology compartmentalize the memory for multiple parameter testing of a peripheral by just programming the different parameters to the peripheral and it maintains the functional hardware setup with minimum changes.   We also added the clock timing control and the Programmed I/O functions that communicates with the Programmed Data I/O CPLD #1.   The timing and control for Enable and Data Ready lines incorporate a DDS AD9854 IC.  We used this chip for a few products several years ago and there are some other IC's that we will also look at however the 9854 has a dual DAC output that are phased controlled separately.  The price is in the USD $50 range for small quantities however it is one of the most versatile DDS IC on the market and will generate a clean 100MHz Sine, Triangle and Squarewave signals which incorporate two high speed DACs with a 14 bit phase control between the DACs.

The initial timing diagram for the memory transfer is still the same however there is added logic to handle the added features.  We will still start with the initial timing created in Figure 19.5   This timing will generally change as the CPLD#2 is designed and a full timing analysis is performed.  Propagation delays will change with addition to the CPLD when it is compiled.  This is one of the reasons that when using a dual CPLD design one CPLD will handle the critical timing part of a design and remains fixed in order to maintain performance.

CPLD#2 I/O Data BUS Register Setup Flow Diagram
The new memory data transfer changes also effect the way the CPLD is programmed as shown in the flow diagram in Figure 20.1 below.  The new additions require the setup of the ITF mode functions, Pattern recognition, speed of the transfer, default timing delays between enable and data available and a few other changes along the way. Performing a first pass design allows us to see how the internals are layed out and more importantly gives us an opportunity of fine tune the design for more flexibility.

Figure 20.1   CPLD #2  Program Flow Diagram Memory Data Transfer

ITF CPLD#2 Direct Memory Access Controller
Now that we have the preliminary registers and flow diagram identified it is time to start getting to the detailed design.  The first step is to insure we have enough pins in the CPLD that will accommodate all the changes to the design.  Table 20.0 below identifies the number of I/O pins required for the ITF Memory controller.  From the previous parts we selected the MAX-II series 144 pin TQFP CPLD series since there are 116 I/O Pins available on the chip.  There are several sizes of the MAX-II 144 Pin TQFP available depending on the number of LE (Logic Elements or Logical Units) in the selected chip.  We will hold off in picking a specific chip until we do the design.  The Quartus IDE will identify the LE's required to complete the design during compilation.

Name Pins Description
Data I/O Bridge 8 Data Transfer to/from Laptop or Desktop
Device Select 8 Device Select, Chip Enable, Read Setup, Write Setup,  R/W Control
MAIN Clock 2 Main Clock - 200 MHz Differential input
Memory Address 24 External Memory Chip address lines up to 16 Meg Words
Memory Data Bus 16 External Memory Data Bus 16 bit word
Memory Control 8 External Memory Control Lines , R/W and enable lines
CPLD#1 Data Interconnect 16 Inter-communications between CPLD#1 and CPLD#2 16 bit Data
CPLD#1 Data Control 10 Inter-communications between CPLD#1 and CPLD#2 Control lines 8 bits
Aux Latched Byte Input 8 Aux latched input
Aux Direct Byte Input 8 Aux direct sense input
Aux Control 4 Aux Input Control
CPLD#2 Pins Required 112 Total I/O Pins Available=116 Spare pins = 4

Table 20.0  CPLD #2 I/O Pin Requirements

Since the Memory controller is contained within a single CPLD we can begin this CPLD design independently.  This is the main interconnect  to a Desktop or Laptop computer via the USB port to 16 bit bridge chip which we will cover in another part of the ITF development.  The changes in the memory controller came up during a discussion for other types of interface peripherals that may be used on the IoT Core Platform.  The addition of a security ID feature as well as digital pattern recognition at the bit level to start and end a data transfer process add flexibility for future development/

For the MAX-II CPLD design we will be using Quartus 9.1sp2 and 18.1 Prime.  At the time of this writing the Windows 10 release for 19.1 was not available.  This also gives the opportunity to compare the two.. The first issue found is the printer setup.  We have an HP Designjet T120 with the roll attachment for C and D size drawings.   This works great in Quartus 9.1 especially when p[rinting from ANSI B size to ANSI C and D sizes.   When we attempted to do the same in release 18.1 the page selection is totally out of sync with the sizes.. When we migrate from 9.1 to 18.1 the C size ends uyp to be a letter size even whern the default printer is the Designjet.  The size that works is Super C/A2 for release 18.1 which appears to be an Architectual-C.  The selection for C&D size are standard ANSI sheets and the ARCH sizes are larger, this is not a problem for the roll paper since it cuts to size.   I will download 19.1 for windows when it is available and runs some test on it for compatibility.   

OK, the CPLD#2 first pass is shown below in FIgure 20.2  and we find that it is possible to fit a lot of the control for the memory transfer into CPLD2 adding the extra features that gives us a 16 bit logic analyzer type memory buffer device as well as a other features for a programmed control 16 bit test fixture that includes a DMA control feature for CPLD #1.  

As a design preference it is a good idea to do a preliminary pin assignment layout of the chip to get a feel of how the PCB will handle the traces.  Pin assignment does effect the timing due to the internal matrix propagation times.   We have learned over the years that a good portion of system integration problems arise due to propagation delays and some type of timing problems with the interconnects of FPGA's, CPLD.s matrix and associated support IC's.  A preliminary layout and pin assignment will show the first pass at the propagation delays inside the CPLD / FPGA which gives the opportunity to change the design to accommodate the performance requirements.  There are ways to work around matrix timing issues and if we run into to them during development we will present them.  One of the ways is to use the next size up on the CPLD part number that has more Logic Elements and Pins if available.  These chips have a larger internal connection matrix and will allow more flexible optimization and shorter propagation delays.

Figure 20.2   CPLD #2  Design

Creating CPLD Pin Assignment Templates
OK, for the first time assigning pins for FPGA's and CPLD's my preference is to use a spreadsheet model that identifies the fixed pins then fill in the blanks.  All programmable Logic IC from all of the manufacturers have their own fixed pin assignments so this is a critical strategy to insure that the assignments do not conflict with fixed pins.  Below is the template for the MAX-II 1270 LE 144 TQFP model that we will be using here.  The design only uses about 50% of the Logic Units, however this allows for future assignments.  There is only a few spare pins, however we added an additional 16 pin input port just to make it easier if future modifications require more I/O pins.   Figure 20.3 and Figure 20.4 shows the blank spreadsheet pin assignments sued by number and by name.  There are a few signal names left in since we have performed similar tasks on several designs over the years.  You can download the Xcell spreadsheet and are free to use it.  The PCB schematic capture and footprints will be available when we get to that section of the series.  Click on each spreadsheet to see the assignments for the first pass of the CPLD.

Figure 20.3  CPLD #2  MAX-II Pin Assignment by Number Design Template

Figure 20.4 CPLD #2  MAX-II Pin Assignment by Name Design Template

The file in Quartus the holds the pin assignments is a simple text file that can be opened by any text editor.  For this design it is "" and contains helpful information on how the unused pins and the I/O pins should be connected.  The file is organized by Pin Number 1-144 so it would be more efficient to fill in the By number spreadsheet first then fill in the by name template.  For the by name template I just input a clean spreadsheet and input the text file skipping all the previous lines up to pin one of the assignments.  Sorting them by pin name insures that all the pins are assigned.  Then just cut and past the name grouped into the By Name template spreadsheet.   The spreadsheet template for grouping the pins by name allows the designer to organize the layout of the PCB to fit the pin assignments and allow pin swapping to make the layout traces easier to route.

How to Obtain a Finished ITF:
Our plans when the ITF is finished, is to offer an ITF to the public that has many more features than the one being developed for this presentation.  We already have completed two different PoD products to get ready for manufacturing and offering custom development for contract manufacturing companies and the entrepreneur small company that want to setup a development test base for future and present development contracts.  Please use the BASIL Networks Contact Form to be put on a mailing list when we are ready to supply the manufacturing prints if you are interested in purchasing the entire system manufactured and tested.


OK, this is a lot to present in a single part as with most of the parts of this series as we dive deeper into the designs.  This update to the ITF section adds a single channel DMA controller as well as a Digital Logic Analyse for monitoring CPU BUS timing.  This becomes a very useful reuse design since not all designs will survive the reuse environment as we mentioned previously, only about 5% will be a true total Plug'N'Play reuse.  Experience has shown that FPGA and CPLD designs that incorporate the simplest of modifications have the risk of reduced performance, it is the nature of the beast.  We selected the larger of the MAX-II Logic Units to allow optimization and future additions if required.

The next part of this series will be addressing the timing for this CPLD #2.  The pin assignments will most likely change when we get into the PCB layout and we will come back to the timing performance as we change the pin assignment for a clean PCB layout.

CPLD#1 will cover all the serial hardware protocols we will be adding to the ITF.  The main serial protocols will be a very high speed serial protocol to address the various serial A/D converters and other serial sensing interface IC's.  We will be considering adding a TCP/IP Ethernet controller for the standard interface to the desktop or laptop or internal LAN network.  

Changing poor engineering habits are difficult however not impossible to correct.   Humans are very flexible they all have the ability of learning anything with applied effort, the only impasse is the mind set that if negative will defeat any attempt to grow and instill fear of learning.  The key is to acknowledge the initial behavior, no it will not change overnight - it took a while to become rooted.  Bringing the development behavior to the surface and acknowledging the behavior is the first step in this series to bring the development process to a winning level.   What this series will present by the successful development mind set to complete a Core IoT Platform development process as a winning process to insure success in any project development taken on.

BASIL Networks will be developing educational class room video modules to discuss engineering and project management principles by active example with hardware, software and lab experiments as we continue on with the series.  All hardware and software designed during this series will be available through our on-line video tutorials along with the class materials.

As the series progresses the author, Sal Tuzzo will be available for discussion through the BASIL Networks Contact Form for those that want to apply this series to conduct their own experiments.  I will always be appreciative for the private comments sent through the contact form for suggestions and advice during the development of this series.  This is a growing opportunity for everyone entering into product development as well as a great review for us "well seasoned" in the field to just refresh our human DRAM.

It is recommended for those that have specific questions to use the BASIL Networks Contact Form to separate them from getting lost in the general comments for each blog presentation.  For all specific design request or contracts please feel free to contact us.

Part 21+ Preliminary Outline"Design the ITF: -Continued

Reference Links:

ITF Selected Components

MAX-II EPM1270T144C5  Pin Assignment Template

BOM Spreadsheet and Component datasheets ZIP file

PGA281 Programmable gain Amplifier Datasheet
IS66WVE4M16EBLL 64Mbit (4M x16) Pseudo SRAM Datasheet
Alliance Memory AS1C8M16PL 128Mbit (8Meg x16) Pseudo SRAM

Intel®/Altera® Quartus Download 9.1 sp2 from Archives
Intel®/Altera® Quartus Lite 18.x Download

Requirements Traceability Matrix  (RTM)
Project Management
Mezzanine Board

The majority of Internet scheme and protocol information are from a few open public information sources on the net, IETF (Internet Engineering Task Force) RFC's that explain details on the application of the protocols used for both IPv4 and IPv6 as well as experimental protocols for the next generation Internet and the Network Sorcery web site.  The remaining of this series on the IoT platform will be from BASIL Networks MDM (Modular Design Methodology) applied with the Socratic teaching method.   Thank You - expand your horizon- Sal Tuzzo

Network Sorcery:
The Internet Engineering task Force: IETF - RFC references

Memory Segmentation
The Memory Management Unit (MMU)
Virtual Address Space
Virtual Addresses and Page Tables
Extended Memory

Previous Part 19 IoT Core Platform - Peripheral I/O Development - Peripheral Device Real World Testing -Continued(June 17, 2019)

Next Part 21 IoT Core Platform - Peripheral I/O Development - Peripheral Device Real World Testing -Continued(Mar 23rd, 2020)



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