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The Sun SPOT Platform

The Sun(TM) Small Programmable Object Technology (SPOT) is a new sensor network hardware with full Java support, that has been recently (early 2007) introduced by Sun Microsystems(TM). It is a state-of-the-art WSN platform that provides much more computational power and memory than the previous generations of very limited sensor nodes. The most notable feature of the Sun SPOT platform is that it runs Java as its native programming language on bare metal. This allows sophisticated algorithms to be implemented on the sensors nodes easily. The specifications for a Sun SPOT device are listed below:

Anatomy of eSPOT.
Sun SPOT Processor Board

  • 180 MHz 32 bit ARM920T core - 512K RAM/4M Flash
  • 2.4 GHz IEEE 802.15.4 radio with integrated antenna
  • USB interface
  • 3.7V rechargeable 720 mAh lithium-ion battery
  • 32 uA deep sleep mode
General Purpose Sensor Board
  • 2G/6G 3-axis accelerometer
  • Temperature sensor
  • Light sensor
  • 8 tri-color LEDs
  • 6 analog inputs
  • 2 momentary switches
  • 5 general purpose I/O pins; 4 high current output pins
Squawk Virtual Machine
  • Fully capable J2ME CLDC 1.1 Java VM with OS functionality
  • VM executes directly out of flash memory
  • Device drivers written in Java
  • Automatic battery management
Developer Tools
  • Use of standard IDEs such as NetBeans or Eclipse
  • Integrates with J2SE applications
  • Sun SPOT wired via USB to a computer acts as a base-station
  • Deployment and debugging over radio possible

These recent hardware developments make complex distributed data processing tasks feasible which go beyond the previous 'sensing - collecting - centrally processing' approaches. In SSDQP, we take advantage of this.