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Compiling Arduino code for PIC32

Programming PIC microcontrollers using Arduino code style isn’t something new. We are already familiar with ChipKit development boards from Digilent and their Arduino like development environment called mpide. Tom Kibalo suggests using MPLAB IDE to develop and use Arduino code for PIC32 microcontrollers. He has been developing Arduino library code for PIC32. Most agree that Arduino IDE environment sucks for making more serious projects, so different options are always welcome. For instance by using MPLAB X IDE you can be way more productive with all tools it provides. Arduino library for PIC provides most of Arduino specific functions and there fore most of Arduino code can be executed on PIC same way using simple wrapper code. Continue reading

Extend Your DAC Resolution

IF you have used any of the microcontroller, you must have gone through the pain of limited DAC resolution which at some point of time must have forced you to use an external DAC, which is a little complicated to code. You can obviously extend the range of the DAC by using a sigma-delta converter on the software side but it can be a bit slowly. To extend the DAC, a LTC1665 8-bit 8-channel DAC and a 8-bit 6-channel digital potentiometer with a nominal resistance of 10K is used. Since the current flowing through the potentiometer is in the sub-µA range, a precision rail-to-rail opamp (AD8603) is added as a voltage follower to ensure the accuracy of the voltage divider. The resolution is extended by using two DAC with a potentiometer using which we can adjust the output voltage continuously. If the potentiometer is replaced by a digital one the number of bits at the output is effectively the sum of the DAC resolution and that of the digital potentiometer. The effective output is that we have a 16 bit… Continue reading

Resetting Arduino via serial line

Normally Arduino boards are reset by using additional DTR line of serial interface. This becomes a problem when USB-UART adapter doesn’t support DDR line. And you probably read many cases were one or another particular cable won’t work for programming, but can be used for simple serial data transfers. Ralph thought that there should be another solution that would allow using any serial cable for programming. He thought that TXD and RXD lines are always available since they are used for data receive and transmit. So why not to use one of those to reset microcontroller. With three additional discretes he created a simple circuit that would stand between RXD data line and RST pin. This is simply an RC circuit that would discharge cap during some time. So when data line works in normal operation – RSTin isn’t affected due to slow cap discharge. But when RST signal is held down for longer time – cap is discharged and then RST signal is sent. Since he’s done modifications, he also had to do changes in AVRDude configs. That turned… Continue reading

Easy To Make Steam Gauge

This instructable is about a steam gauge which can easily get hooked up in your kitchen and can easily be mounted on the wall on a permanent basis. With the help of some basic mechanical skills, little fabrication knowledge and of course Arduino programming, you can easily make this in your home. Also, a little knowledge of wood working is required to make the gauge look more beautiful and appealing. On first look it might sound a little tougher to make but the instructable is written really well to guide you. All the components will be easily available online The Steam Punk look is really awesome to watch. The whole project was made in a span of 6 months. An Arduino sketch is created which generates random movement by having the servo rotate for various lengths of time. The sketch is never ending; it will run until power is shut off to the Arduino.  Apart from it, there is a combination of limit switched placed so as to limit the speed as well as range in the opposite direction. Continue reading

Homemade Power Supply using Arduino

Power supplies are the basic things that are required to power any sort of electronics. They can be in form of batteries or different adaptors. This power supply is a homemade bench power supply with dual channel capabilities. It functions in both current controlled as well as voltage controlled mode. This power supply is very similar to those big heavy power supplies that we often see at any electronics lab or research lab.  Another good thing about the project is it get updated frequently, and new specifications are added every other month or so. [ This dual channel supply can provide a maximum voltage of 25V per channel at 3A for each channel. Another good thing is that it’s controlled and monitored by an on-board Arduino which is running at 16Mhz. For display purpose, instead of using those multiplexed seven segment displays, he has used a graphical lcd of 128×64 with a relatively bigger font size. These graphical lcd not only make the project beautiful but only gives out more information. A very good and easy to make power supply,… Continue reading

ENGADINO – Arduino-like platform

Engadino, the word might sound strange initially but it has been named after Engadin- which is a ski resort in Switzerland. The project is exactly a duplicate of Pinguino which have an Arduino-like electronics platform. The difference lies in the microcontroller used. For the Arduino, the microcontrollers are made by ATMEL while for the Pinguino, they are made by Microchip. Since it’s an arduino type platform it has an on-board boot loader and also supports the programming via usb just like the arduino. It makes you write easily your application without spending hours learning pragma, configuration bits or command line compiler. Pinguino is Free Open Source software released under the terms of the GNU GPLv2 (General Public License version 2). Pinguino Boards are Open Hardware. All the project files are available on the website pinguino.cc. The only difference between Pinguino and Endagino is the size of the board, the Endagino has dual layer using SMD based components, The Endagino is designed to use a shield based approach while the Pinguino is designed to use with breadboards since it has male… Continue reading