For my PhD in Computer Science (thesis available from http://eprints.soton.ac.uk/375503/) I have created a node for sensor networks. This node combines a BeagleBone (either original or black) and an MSP430F5437. This gives a node that can run on very little power most of the time (using the MSP430), but is able to run Linux and perform more complicated data processing tasks when needed.
The basic specification of the node is summarised in the following table. There is also a second version available with less switched outputs and no serial ports for when these features are not necessary.
|Number of switched outputs at Vin||<8|
|Number of 5volt switched outputs||4|
|Available Serial ports (RS232 level)||3|
|Available ADC inputs in MSP430||4|
|Available ADC inputs into MSP430 with pull down resistor||4|
|Power draw Beagle on||945.71|
|Power draw Beagle off||36.12mW|
This node has been used in Iceland and met with success in the Glacsweb project where it has enabled more data than ever before to be gathered about how glaciers move and respond to global warming. This schematics and software for this are available to other researchers if they are so interested. For more details please email me.