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Arduino At Home DIY Electronics

Arduino Uno Projects And Software

Getting started with Arduino The Arduino Uno is an inexpensive computer on a board. It has everything that you need to make a smart controller similar to the ones that you might find in any electronic product available nowadays.

If you are looking for a cheap way to start learning how to design embedded microconroller circuits or you need a programmable controller for a project then this could be your simplest and most cost effective solution. Anyone can use one of these More...

Servo Motor Control Systems

Servo motor

Let me show you how servo motors work and what you need to do to drive them. There's a handy library that you can use with Android which makes things very easy called 'Servo'. But what if you need to drive the servo some other way? If that's the case then you will need to know something about how they work.

I will show you how to connect one up and write a very simple Arduino sketch to experiment with. I explain exactly what goes on inside a servomotor and I finish up with a set of oscilloscope traces. If you want to know more about servo motors then read on. More...

Arduino Tachometer

Rotating fan illuminated by strobe

How to build a simple but useful strobe based tachometer using an Arduino Uno, an LCD/Keypad shield and a few transistors, LED's and resistors. Short pulses are generated with a simple Arduino sketch and used to drive a bank of LED's. This produces short regular pulses of light which when synchronized with the speed of a fan or motor or other rotating object, makes the moving object appear to be standing still. When this happens the light pulse rate is equal to the RPM of the object. More...

Arduino Motion Detector

HC-SR04 ultrasonic motion detector

Building on the Arduino Distance Sensor project you can now add motion detection to the features of the device. It detects when objects appear in front of the sensor and because it's ultrasonic it will work in the daylight just as well as it does at night. This can be an advantage over passive infra-red detectors. More...

Arduino Distance Sensor Part 2

HC-SR04 ultrasonic distance sensor

Following on from the Arduino Distance Sensor project here is an updated version of the software sketch. Two new display modes have been added and the 'Select' key on the LCD keypad is used to swich between display modes. Full explanation of the software is provided. More...

Arduino Christmas Icicle Lights - Ultra Low Power Pro-Mini

Icicle Lights

This started out as an investigation into how long I could run an Arduino on a small battery and still get it to do something useful. I had to choose the right Arduino board and figure out how to use the 'SLEEP_MODE_PWR_DOWN' mode.

With a little bit of gentle hacking of the board, editing a file in the Arduino IDE and flashing the fuses in the Arduino I managed to get the power consumption down to less than 5µA. At this level a 3v button cell should last for years but I still needed to make it do something.

"A christmas decoration" I said. I will make an LED icicle that drips every few seconds. Perfect I thought. Read on to find out how you can build one too. More...

Arduino Distance Sensor

HC-SR04 ultrasonic distance sensor

Sensing the proximity of objects can be achieved effectively using ultrasonic echo techniques. Transmitting pulses of ultrasonic sound and measuring the time it takes the echo to return does present us with some interesting challenges however.

The sound can bounce off more than one object at different distances or the pulse is scattered. Sometimes the receiver doesn't even hear the echo. Luckily these problems can be overcome and a useful instrument built using an HC-SR04 ultrasonic transceiver and a little clever software running on an Arduino. More...

Arduino Pro-Mini Carrier with ISP Programming

Arduino Pro-Mini Carrier

One of the most versatile of the Arduino family is the Pro-Mini. Its tiny footprint and low power make it ideal for many battery powered devices. However it lacks a USB port and an ISP programming connector which makes it a little more difficult to program.

You can either attach an FTDI USB to serial converter and program it using the bootloader like other Arduinos or you can program it using the ISP programmer built onto this break out board. Don't worry, the ISP programmer is no more difficult to use than the bootloader and it also allows you to reprogram the bootloader and the configuration fuses. This is most important when configuring the board to run at very low current consumption and you can't do that with the bootloader. More...

Arduino Safety Cut Out Senses Jams

Hall Effect Sensor monitoring rotating sprocket A reader emailed me a little while ago to ask for my help to program an Arduino board as a safety cut out. He was building a cartridge reloading machine that needed a safety cut out in situations where the motor jams. The solution using an Arduino Uno turned out to be remarkably simple. More...

Arduino Pro-Mini ISP Programmer Using A UNO

Pro-Mini programmer

The Arduino Pro-Mini is a tiny microcontroller with similar features to that of the UNO. It has a bootloader for uploading programs but unlike the UNO it doesn't have a USB interface so you need to use a USB to serial adapter to use it.

Why not use an In System Programmer (ISP) instead? You can use a cheap UNO as an ISP and you can then program the bootloader and fuses as well as the application program. Sounds like a win-win to me. More...

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