CATIE, a non-profit association, the aim of which is to stimulate and encourage the adoption of digital technologies by companies openly and freely provides 3 technological innovation platforms, sustained by its research and knowledge transfer projects.
These include the 6TRON platform, which provides hardware and software building blocks designed to accelerate the development of digital objects in the form of open source hardware.
The origin of 6TRON lies in the premise of a deep chasm between the world of "makers", which advocates sharing and collaborative development, and the world of embedded systems professionals, which often develops its solutions alone.
Those in the first group, which includes many French tech start-ups, develop very fast, but the industrial constraints are disregarded and their projects struggle to get past the modelling stage.
Those in the second group, mainly originating from the electronics sector, successfully complete their projects but could develop much more quickly if they made use of community solutions.
At CATIE, because we believe that rapid modelling and industrial development are not necessarily incompatible, we have taken up the challenge of designing an architecture and an environment where it would be as quick and easy to develop your model as in Arduino or Raspberry Pi, but where the transition to an embedded and industrial object would be completely natural and fluid.
Over the past 4 years, more than 50 projects have made use of 6TRON and its open source hardware to allow companies to develop industrial electronic items, which are mainly produced in France, at a low cost.
At present, with more than 30 building blocks, the 6TRON platform (6tron.io) is continuing to grow and now covers topics such as cybersecurity and embedded AI, which are key for development of the future IoT. In addition to the ARM branch, a branch of the extremely promising RISC-V will be launched in 2021.
6TRON, a technological innovation open source hardware platform for embedded systems