Seeed Studio introduced four new modules that add to its already extensive line of LoRa products. The WM1302 LoRaWAN Gateway Module comes in a mini-PCIe form factor for easy integration into an IoT device. They have also introduced a WM1302 Raspberry Pi HAT adapter that adapts the form factor to the Pi's 40-pin GPIO header.
"Our new WM1302 modules are the next-generation of mini-PCIe form factor LoRaWAN gateway modules that have been carefully designed to unlock greater possibilities in long-range wireless transmission." — Jonathan Tan, Seeed Studio
LoRa combines long-range communication with low-power consumption. This combination makes it ideal to pass data around smart cities, buildings, and agriculture. LoRaWAN Gateways connects the private LoRa devices to the Internet through a connected device, like a Raspberry Pi.
Seeed Studio based the WM1302 on the Semtech SX1302 baseband LoRa chip for gateways. This chip's power consumption is low enough that the LoRaWAN gateway module does not need additional heat sinks or other thermal management techniques.
There are four versions of the Seeed Studio WM1302 LoRaWAN Gateway module. The configuration of frequency band and serial interface multiplies out the matrix of parts. US (915 MHz) and EU (868 MHz) each have a SPI or USB-based version of the module.
The WM1302's form factor is the familiar-looking mini-PCIe card. Although, it is only a mechanical connection. There are no PCI-Express signals on the card or the module. Communication between the host computer and WM1302 only occurs over SPI or USB.
Modules come certified by CE, FCC, and TELEC. Having modules with these certifications can simplify the development cycle of an IoT application in most cases.
In addition to the standalone modules, Seeed Studio also introduced a Raspberry Pi HAT adapter. The adapter connects the SPI-based module to a Raspberry Pi through the Pi's GPIO connector. The HAT also includes an embedded GPS module and LoRaWAN authentication chip. You could also use the Pi HAT as a breakout for the module. (The Pi and module are sold separately from the adapter.)
WM1302 modules start at $88.90 for SPI models and $98.90 for USB. Pre-orders for the WM1302 modules (select the type on this page) and the WM1302 Raspberry Pi adapter are available on Seeed Studio's online store.