NFC-Enable System Design in Wireless SensorNetwork

University essay from KTH/Skolan för informations- och kommunikationsteknik (ICT)

Abstract: Wireless Sensor Network (WSN) have the potential to greatly affect every part of industrial and people’s lifestyle. For this reason, iPack VINN Excellence Center contributes to wireless tracking platform for fresh food and lifestyle. Every new idea or technology is attempted to integrate to the WSN for more efficient, better user experience and lower power consumption. Meanwhile Near Field Communication (NFC), a short-range wireless connectivity technology, which can make communication easily,safety and intuitively arousing iPack interest. So this master thesis focus on integrating NFC technology into existing systems to build a NFC-enable Wireless Sensor Network system. And with thissystem, only one simple touch, data from sensor node can be transmitted to mobile phone or tablet. Furthermore parameters of sensor node also can be configured easily by using above devices. So basically the NFC peer-to-peer communication protocol is mainly used. To implement and test the functions of the demonstration, a sets of hardware is needed to chosen and bought. How to design the system without changing old WSN is very tricky. To design a NFC adapter which can connect existing WSN with NFC part is thesolution of this thesis. So the main task was designing a NFC adapter which could be connected with either mobile phone/tablet or sensor node. It was the NFC adapter that makes mobile phone/tablet or sensor node NFC enabled. For the connection method, the high speed UART interface was chosen to connect with sensor node. The architecture of NFC adapter includes two main parts, A NFC chip (PN532) from NXP and a MCU(VNC2) from FTDI. The PN532 uses its antenna to send or receive data with different NFC protocols. The VNC2 is used to store sensor collected data and sends command though UART to control the PN532. Learning to use the PN532 was a tough task during the thesis work. Both official manuals and demo application are helpful for understanding the PN532 controlling. In addition, We analysed the sniffer data from demo application and code from NXP software design kit (SDK). which helped us to know the process of the PN532 peer-to-peer communication. After learning from official application, user manual and monitoring software/hardware design kid applications, we began to design our own hardware suitable SDK for the NFC adapter. At first we connected the hardware parts. When hardware connection was ready, we wrote and tested the firmware for VNC2 platform. Then due to the reason that Windows is more stable than our build VNC2 platform system at that moment, we wrote our own software design kid for NFC adapter under Windows OS first. The basic idea of software design kid is easy to use, modify and integrate into any other platforms. At the end of the thesis project, we integrated our own SDK into VNC2. When integration was done, a lot of stability and performance validation were done. Based on the result of testing, we optimized and modified our SDK and tested it again. This thesis project basically handles out a new ideal of integrating NFC to existing wireless sensor network to make WSN NFC enable. To prove the idea, we made a demo to show the enhanced sensor node and the results are satisfied. However there still has a lot of works and a lot of improvement should can be done in the future.

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