The nRF52811supports Bluetooth 5.1, which adds direction finding to the high throughput, long range, and enhanced coexistence capabilities of Bluetooth 5. The SoC also includes a multiprotocol 2.4GHz radio (featuring 4dBm output power with -97dBm sensitivity (at 1Mbps in Bluetooth 5 mode)), 64MHz, 32-bit Arm Cortex M4 processor, 192kB Flash, and 24kB RAM memory, as well as a wide range of analogue and digital interfaces.
Nordic has also updated its nRF5 Software Development Kit (SDK) to version 15.3.0. This SDK includes Nordic’s S112 SoftDevice (a Bluetooth 5 certified RF software protocol “stack”) and a selection of examples, libraries, and drivers. (Thread connectivity solutions will be available through Nordic’s upcoming new version (v2.1) of the nRF5 SDK for Thread and Zigbee.)
The nRF52811 SoC’s Bluetooth 5.1 Direction Finding enables positioning solutions to not only rely just on received signal strength indicator (RSSI), but also the actual direction of a signal. This improves accuracy and opens up new applications. There are two types of methods for determining direction, angle of arrival (AoA), where the direction of the received signal is calculated, and angle of departure (AoD), where the direction of the transmitted signal is calculated. Direction finding can operate in either two or three dimensions depending on the selected design complexity and antenna array.
The nRF52811 SoC will be produced in a 6x6mm QFN48 package with 32 GPIOs, a 5x5mm QFN32 with 17 GPIOs, and a 2.5×2.5mm wafer level CSP32 with 15 GPIOs. All packages are compatible with those of the nRF52810 SoC enabling reuse of the same PCB layout.
Full capabilities of the nRF52811 SoC-including Bluetooth 5 Long Range, Bluetooth 5.1 Direction Finding, and Zigbee 3.0-will be made available through software releases during 2019.