Intel Galileo is a new development board based on Quark processors announced by Intel in 2013, and is a perfect development board for students and hobbyists that dig into DIY projects. In this article, we make a short overview of the Galileo board, performances and try to find out why to use it robotics applications.
The Intel Galileo is an open-source minicomputer designed for simple, interactive and quickly projects, and up to complex projects such as humanoid robots.
The development board facilitates communication with microcontrollers, Arduino boards, or communication with a computer.
It can be powered via an AC-to-DC adapter with a recommended power adapter that has 5V and 3 Amp output. As a disadvantage, Galileo cannot be powered with 7-12V voltage range like Arduino Uno and Due.
The Quark processors focus on two main characteristics. One of these is the less power required to run, while the second important feature is the low-price that might push down the price of the project.
Located in the center of the board, the low-power single-core processor has 400MHz speed and works along 16KB L1 cache and 512KB on-die embedded SRAM.
Reasons to use Intel Galileo
The Intel Galileo is a cost effective development environment with native I/O capabilities of the Clanton SoC that run a small custom version of Linux. For development Galileo is compatible with development environment used for Arduino boards.
The core of the Galileo operates under 3.3V, while the board can support shields that run with 3.3V and 5V. Switching the jumper position related to I/O pins, the voltage translation can be disabled to provide 3.3V.
Based on Intel architecture, the board is compatible with almost any Arduino Uno shield, and can be used in projects that typically use microcontrollers or ARM CPUs. Due to Arduino software and shields compatibility, Intel Galileo is a great development board targeted for students and hobbyists.
With open-source architecture, Galileo can be replicated and improved for a wide range of projects.
Intel Galileo Features
In this section of the article, we make a list with some of the most important features for the Intel Galileo.
Shield and Ethernet Compatibility
The board is compatible with any 5V or 3.3V Arduino Uno shields, which means that support up to 6 analog inputs, it has a serial port, and 14 digital I/O pins.
The Ethernet port located on the board is compatible with Arduino Ethernet library and can be created a HTTP connection without modifying the standard WebClient.
Compatible with Arduino IDE
The Intel board is fully compatible with Arduino IDE and is capable to upgrade the firmware on the board.
TWI/I2C, SPI Support
You can connect the TWI/I2C or SPI components to the Galileo using the standard Arduino Wire library or SPI library.
Using a MicroSD memory card you can run a more fully-featured Linux operating system, memory that can be accessed using standard Arduino SD card library.
Operating Systems Supported for Development
Galileo was designed to support a wide range of operating systems including here Linux Ubuntu, Mac OS X, Windows 7 and Windows 8.
The Intel Galileo board runs an open source firmware based on C programming language, and can work with any programming language that supports a .586 extensions for x86 processors. Compilers supported are GCC and ICC.
Two Options for Reset
You can reset the board in two ways. One method is to use the Reset button, while the second method is to reset the board in software. The second method to reset is faster in rebooting than the classical method with Reset button.
The board features a 10/100 Ethernet, mini-PCIe slot (PCIe gen 2 x1), USB 2 host controller, USB client connector, native mini-PCIe connector for the addition of Wi-Fi , 10 pin JTAG ports and 256MB of DRAM. Galileo also features an 8MB SPI Flash for firmware/bootloader/sketch storage. The MicroSD card slot is optional. Galileo measures 10.6 centimeters (4.2 inches) long by 7 centimeters (2.8 inches) wide.
10 Great Intel Galileo Features