I am currently working on a non-profit project that is targeted at providing a safety and security tool for the “invisible” population we have here in my area of California. We’ve already been working with particle.io and the Boron 404x in order to prototype a checklist of v1 features, and I’ve set our alpha goal as August 1, 2023 (this will be our first release into the wild.)
Many of the initial features revolve around low (or no) barrier to entry, ultra-reliable redundant communications, integrations with resources that are experts in serving the target audience, and physical reliability. I’ve done quite a bit of work with Arduino in other contexts, and Adafruit has always been my go-to.
My question is this: are there any limitations or compatibility issues when integrating the Boron with the Feather ecosystem? Specifically, boards like the LoRa, GPS, and OLED wings.
This is also an open question, so even if you can’t answer directly any experiences connecting the hardware listed above would be met with eager ears!
Siignal / SGNL Labs - Beacon
In general, the Adafruit boards work well. The only potential situation is that the library for the Adafruit board has not been ported to Particle.
Fortunately, this is an easy process, especially if you are using Particle Workbench. You can make a custom modified version of an Adafruit Arduino library that works on Particle in a couple minutes.
This is an example of a Boron, a GPS, and an OLED wing and it works great!
@sgnl_beacon - Welcome to the Particle Community! Sounds like a nice project helping out others in need!
I've had very good success in prototyping and small scale deployment integrating Boron's to an Adafruit Feather wing. Personally, I've done the relay feather wing, played around with the OLED featherwing, and then did quite a few LoRa feather wings from Adafruit for prototying. If you want to learn more about LoRa + Particle this thread has a lot of information: https://community.particle.io/t/long-range-iot-networks-chapter-2-particle-lora-better-together/
In short, I started with pairing a Particle Boron with a LoRa radio and then used the Adafruit Feather M0 LoRa modules as nodes. These nodes communicated back to the Particle + LoRa combo. Featherwings was the fastest and easiest way to prototype and get 10-20 devices deployed quickly. I still use the Particle platform but now I integrated the LoRa radio into a carrier board for a cleaner smaller design and have a custom LoRa Node that's based on the Adafruit Feather M0 hardware.
For me, the downside of depending on Featherwings was the hardware availability as you scale. If you used Featherwings only, you were at the mercy of Adafruit to get them back in stock vs your own design you had other options. The second is their featherwings do not have the 12 and 16 pin header's soldered on. This goes for both the device itself as well as the double or tripler wings commonly used for prototyping. It's fine to hand solder say 10 or even maybe 50 but if you get higher quantities this becomes a chore.
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