Solar-Powered Development Board

Autonomo is a solar-powered and Arduino-compatible development board from SODAQ, a hardware startup based in Rotterdam, Netherlands. The company, which draws its name from a mixed-up acronym for “SOlar-powered Data AcQuisition”, is building on the success of its first-generation Moja board that was Kickstarted back in 2013.

Like its predecessor, Autonomo is designed to be low-power so it can run sustainably off a solar panel no bigger than a smartphone. It’s a derivative of the Arduino Zero and uses the same Cortex-M0+ processor for top-of-the-line power efficiency.

Solar-Powered Development Board: Autonomo

Autonomo is also modular, with a lot of options for snap-on wireless connectivity. While the short-range standards Wi-Fi and Bluetooth are included, solar power means the flexibility to take your projects far afield — so you may be more excited about long-range protocols like 2G and 3G cellular connections,LoRa, and Sigfox.

The board includes several Grove connectors for attaching the solar panel (or a battery) as well as other peripherals from Seed Studio’s lineup of sensors, actuators and other components. Another modular add-on is the Grove shield, which adds even more plug-and-play hardware slots.

Because it’s part of the Arduino ecosystem, programming Autonomo will be familiar to many developers and tinkerers. In keeping with the community’s open-source ethos, SODAQ is offering its software, along with code libraries and example programs, for easy access on GitHub.

Autonomo’s Kickstarter campaign runs through July 14, and SODAQ plans to ship in October. Check out the video below to learn more.

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