Particle Boron

Overview

The Particle Boron is a cellular-enabled development board with a Nordic Semiconductor nRF52840 for mesh support and an LTE or 2G/3G modem. The board was developed by Particle Industries and has a SWD connector on it for programming.

It is equipped with a onboard LIPO circuit and conforms to the Adafruit Feather formfactor.

The Particle Boron board provides support for the Nordic Semiconductor nRF52840 ARM® Cortex®-M4F SoC with an integrated 2.4 GHz transceiver supporting Bluetooth® Low Energy and IEEE® 802.15.4.

For more information about the Particle Boron board:

Hardware

On the front of the board are RGB-LED, LED and LIPO circuitry. The RGB-LED is controlled by the nRF52840 via GPIO pins.

Particle Boron

Particle Boron (Credit: Particle Industries)

Power supply

The board is optimized for low power applications and supports two power source configurations: battery and micro USB connector.

It contains circuitry for LIPO usage and can be charged via the USB port.

Supported Features

The particle_boron board configuration supports the following hardware features:

Interface Controller Driver/Component
NVIC on-chip nested vectored interrupt controller
RTC on-chip system clock
UART on-chip serial port
I2C on-chip i2c
SPI on-chip spi
GPIO on-chip gpio
FLASH on-chip flash
RADIO on-chip Bluetooth

Other hardware features are not supported by the Zephyr kernel.

Connections and IOs

Please see the Boron Datasheet for header pin assignments, which are common to all Feather-compatible Particle boards. Some peripherals are available to applications through DTS overlay include directives:

  • mesh_feather_spi_spi3.dtsi exposes SPI3 on labeled Feather SPI pins
  • mesh_feather_spi1_spi3.dtsi exposes SPI3 on labeled Feather SPI1 pins
  • mesh_feather_uart1_rtscts.dtsi adds hardware flow control to labeled Feather UART pins

LED

  • LED0 (blue)
  • LED1 (red)
  • LED2 (green)
  • LED3 (blue)

Push buttons

  • SW0 via MODE
  • SW1 via RESET

I2C

  • TWI0 enabled on labeled header (SDA/SCL)
  • TWI1 enabled for internal power management ICs

SPI

  • SPI0 disabled due to TWI0 conflict
  • SPI1 disabled due to TWI1 conflict
  • SPI2 internal to 32 Mb CFI flash chip
  • SPI3 selectable with overlay (SPI or SPI1)

UART

  • UARTE0 enabled RX/TX on labeled header (UART1); add RTS/CTS with overlay
  • UARTE1 internal to u-blox cellular modem

Programming and Debugging

Applications for the particle_boron board configuration can be built and flashed in the usual way (see Build an Application and Run an Application for more details).

Flashing

Build and flash an application in the usual way, for example:

Using west:

# From the root of the zephyr repository
west build -b particle_boron samples/basic/blinky
west flash

Using CMake and ninja:

# From the root of the zephyr repository
# Use cmake to configure a Ninja-based buildsystem:
cmake -B build -GNinja -DBOARD=particle_boron samples/basic/blinky

# Now run ninja on the generated build system:
ninja -C build
ninja -C build flash

Debugging

You can debug an application in the usual way. Here is an example for the Hello World application.

Using west:

# From the root of the zephyr repository
west debug

Using CMake and ninja:

# From the root of the zephyr repository
# If you already ran cmake with -Bbuild, you can skip this step and run ninja directly.
cmake -B build -GNinja -DBOARD=particle_boron samples/hello_world

# Now run ninja on the generated build system:
ninja -C build debug

Testing the LEDs and buttons

There are 2 samples that allow you to test that the buttons (switches) and LEDs on the board are working properly with Zephyr:

You can build and flash the examples to make sure Zephyr is running correctly on your board.