Raspberry Pi and Arduino Serial Communication

I must say that I am getting more and more enamored by my new Raspberry Pi.  As part of my new weather station project, I was needing to communicate data from my embedded Arduino to my Raspberry Pi where I would then store for later analysis.  Usually I expect ventures like these to take most of the evening, if not multiple evenings before finding success.  However, I was able to get successful 3-wire communication up and running in minutes! Here are the steps involved in Continue reading →

Simple IR Emitter and Detector Module

All in one Infrared Emitter and Detector Module This module integrates 2 infrared emitting LED’s and 2 IR detectors. It works by continuously sending a 38 kHz beam of IR light from both LED’s.  As the robot approaches an obstacle, the IR light reflecting off the object will cause one or both of the detectors to send a LOW signal to the microcontroller.  This in turn will cause the robot to slow or stop one or both drive wheels depending on the level of detection. Continue reading →

DIY Variable Power Supply – Transforming AC to DC

One of the main functions of the power supply is to convert our 120V mains AC electricity into usable DC electricity. This is done using a transformer and a bridge rectifier circuit. The Transformer A step-down transformer is used to convert the dangerous 120V AC electricity into a more manageable 25V.   In order to get the 2A output from my power supply, I needed a beefy transformer.  The Radio Shack 25.2V center tap 2A heavy duty transformer was a perfect choice (Model #273-1512).  This Continue reading →

DIY Variable Power Supply – Project Overview

One piece of equipment that all electronics hobbyists will find useful is a variable power supply. There are some great ones out on the market with all the features you could ask for. These can run around $100 and up (and worth every penny). After getting inspiration from some great projects out there, I decided it was time to try to make my own power supply. Some of the features I wanted to build into it were: Variable power from +1.5V to +24V. The ability Continue reading →

Embedding an Arduino on Prototyping Board

The arduino’s great features like powering via the USB port, serial programming, and easy-to-access headers make it indispensable while developing your project.  However, there are times when you may want to make your project more permanent without sacrificing your arduino. It’s actually quite easy to create a somewhat-less-feature-rich version of an arduino on a prototyping board that you can safely leave embedded in your projects.  You could also develop and etch your own PCB for this but due to the simple design, it is just Continue reading →