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Arm-based IoT gateway runs on Moxa Industrial Linux

Feb 20, 2019 — by Eric Brown — 621 views

Moxa announced a -40 to 85°C tolerant “UC-8200” IoT gateway that runs Moxa Industrial Linux on a dual-core, -A7 SoC and offers dual GbE, RS-232/422/485, and mini-PCIe links, plus a CAN port, WiFi/BT, and optional 4G LTE.

Moxa, which announced its Cortex-A8-based UC 2100 series of Industrial IoT gateways last April, partially unveiled a new IIoT gateway called the UC-8200. The system features an unnamed dual-core, Cortex-A7 SoC that “has been optimized for use in energy monitoring systems but is widely applicable to a variety of industrial solutions,” according to the PR-like Control Engineering story that announced the product along with a shorter Industrial Ethernet Book post.

Eventually, a product page should appear with missing details such as RAM and storage. Yet, even the product page for the similar UC-8100 series fails to describe the Cortex-A8 SoC. Other specs are complete, however, such as the earlier model’s 256MB to 512MB DDR3 and 8GB eMMC. (Update: LinuxGizmos reader Arnd Bergmann spotted the earlier UC-8100’s SoC family in the firmware image’s device tree. It’s a TI Sitara AM33x, perhaps one of the AM335x family, which runs on BeagleBone boards.)


UC-8200

The UC-8200 appears to have the same port layout and 128 x 101 x 27mm dimensions as the similarly DIN-rail mountable UC-8100. However, it advances from dual 10/100Mbps LAN ports to dual GbE ports, and from a single mini-PCIe slot to two.

One of the slots is available with optional 4G LTE with “wide temperature” support and Verizon/AT&T certifications. The image at right shows a horizontal, DIN-rail suitable expansion module that offers multiple antennas, and probably the 4G radio itself. The mini-PCIe slots also support other wireless standards like NB-IoT

Like the UC-8100, the UC-8200 provides 2x RS-232/422/485 ports and a variety of LEDs. Unlike that model, it adds a CAN port and optional -40 to 85°C support. There’s no mention of the UC-8100’s serial console port or USB 2.0 port, although the image suggests that a USB port is present in the same location under the Ethernet ports.

The UC-8200 runs at under 10 Watts and has an option for TPM v2.0. There’s no mention of the 12-24 VDC input on the UC-8100.

 
Moxa Industrial Linux and ThingsPro

Like other UC-series IoT gateways, the UC-8200 ships with the Debian 9-based Moxa Industrial Linux (MIL) distribution, which offers 10-year support security patches and bug fixes for IIoT. The MIL distro provides a container-based virtual-machine-like middleware abstraction layer between the OS and applications that supports multiple isolated systems running on a single control host. MIL’s Moxa Security Utility “ensures compliance with the IEC62443-4-2 standard and recent ICS-CERT alerts, to provide an adjustable security protection level for systems and applications,” says the Control Engineering story.

Moxa offers its ThingsPro Gateway data acquisition software as an option. ThingsPro enables “fast integration of edge data into cloud services for large-scale IIoT deployments,” says the story. The software supports Modbus data acquisition, LTE connectivity, MQTT communication, and cloud client interfaces.

Control Engineering notes that the “UC series IIoT Edge Gateways are the first Azure IoT Edge certified Arm-based computers. This Microsoft cloud IoT framework provides “secured remote connections to enable deployment in remote locations, connectivity to allow existing brownfield applications to share data with the cloud, and device management and product longevity to ensure customers can deploy, scale, and maintain their IIoT applications,” says the story.

The story adds that Moxa is a member of the Linux Foundation’s Civil Infrastructure Platform project. This would suggest that MIL will be aligned with the project’s emerging 10-year SLTS Linux kernel for secure industrial and civil infrastructure applications.

 
Further information

No pricing or availability information was provided for the UC-8200, which we imagine will be demonstrated next week at Embedded World. More information should eventually appear on the Moxa website.

 

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2 responses to “Arm-based IoT gateway runs on Moxa Industrial Linux”

  1. Arnd Bergmann says:

    I extracted the device tree from the firmware image, the SoC is in the TI am33xx family, see https://pastebin.com/Hp3afMMr

  2. Jeff Child says:

    Thanks Arnd.
    We’ve updated the story, adding that information.

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