MCH2022 Badge Hardware

Block diagram

The badge contains a huge amount of awesome chips, so many that a block diagram is necessary to explain how everything is interconnected.

Block diagram

The ESP32 is at the center of the operation. It has access to almost all the peripherals on the badge and using its WiFi connectivity it can load new firmware and applications from the internet.

The RP2040 microcontroller provides USB connectivity consisting of two serial ports (for the ESP32 and the FPGA), WebUSB for managing the badge using your browser and HID for acting like a keyboard, mouse or joystick. It also drives the SK6812-EC15 addressable LEDs, giving the badge a lot of bling and eyecandy. To top it off a lot of the I/O pins of the RP2040 have been broken out, both as the IO pins of the SAO connector and as testpads next to the prototyping areas on the back of the badge.

The ICE40UP5K FPGA is programmed over an SPI connection by the ESP32. Using this connection the FPGA can also communicate with the application running on the ESP32. Our goal is to enable people to learn about HDL programming so new bitstreams can easily be loaded into the FPGA by user applications, to provide any function you want ranging from a simple LED blinker to a RISC-V SoC. To accomodate more advanced designs the FPGA is connected to the LCD display via a parallel bus, enabling it to update the display at high refresh rates, as well as 8MB of PSRAM via a Quad-SPI bus. 8 of the I/O pins of the FPGA have been broken out as an industry standard PMOD header, allowing users to connect standard expansion modules or their own creations.


Datasheets and Resources

  • ESP32 datasheet the datasheet for the main processor
  • ESP32 technical reference technical reference for the main processor. This contains information about the features of the chip, so technically, it belongs in the firmware section, but … whatever.
  • WROVER datasheet datasheet of the module. The processor is packed together with peripherals necessary for operations in a module (WROVER) nuder a metallic can.
  • RP2040 documentation site and datasheet
  • Lattice ICE40UP5K - iCE40UltraPlus documentation site and datasheet
  • BME680 4 in 1 gas sensor. (temperature, humidity, air pressure and volatile organic compounds (VOC)
  • BNO055 accelerometer, gyroscope, magnetometer sensor
  • Display also have a look here
  • SK6812-EC15 addressable RGB - LEDs (aka Neopixel)
  • MS4344 Audio DAC