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8 Jul 2013


soldersplash.co.uk have just built their first prototype of  Wifi DipCortex. Which is a Cortex M3 LPC1347 + TI CC3000 WiFi radio in a tiny 40 Pin dip format for easy breadboarding or adding to your product.

WiFi is something we have wanted to do for a long time, but there are a lot of technical and regulatory challenges around it. If you’re running an OS on an embedded PC like the Raspberry PI, WiFi is simple, you buy a cheap dongle and the intelligence is in the driver.For a low power embedded project where you’re not running an OS it gets a lot harder and that means it’s expensive. So the only real option is to use a WiFi module and these are normally expensive.A few months ago, whilst designing the DipCortex, we identified a module that is low cost and comes with FCC, IC & ETSI certification, saving huge costs assocaited with getting radio equipment through testing. The goal was to squeeze this module, the TI CC3000MOD, on to a board the same size as the DipCortex which was a massive challenge, as the DipCortex is sized to replace a 40pin DIP package.

WiFi DipCortex – An embedded WiFi module to power your next product - [Link]

7 Jul 2013


UV resin based mUVe 3D Printer releases source files:

The mUVe 1 3D Printer, an open UV resin based 3D printer was successfully funded on indiegogo back in April. As estimated, the first Ultimate kit was shipped out on Jun.20. Last weekend the team has completed building and shipping all of the Ultimate kits. Meanwhile Dean Piper, the maker behind the mUVe 1 3D Printer project, has shared all of the source material on their website


UV resin based mUVe 1 3D Printer source files released - [Link]

7 Jul 2013


Koltykov A.V. writes:

In this article, I will use the current monitor based on the ZXCT series IC for measuring current voltage and watts. In my task needed measure the load current of not more than 2A, the range of 200 mA to 1.5 A. Load power supply voltage: 12 volts.

DIY DC Amp Volt Watt Meter - [Link]

7 Jul 2013


TechBitar wrote this Instructable detailing his ANDRUINO, the 2-way Android controller for Arduino via bluetooth:

ANDRUINO is a simple tool to help you control your Arduino (or clone) from your Android phone. It’s both an Android app and an Arduino program. Andruino has a simple Android user interface to 1) control Arduino’s digital and PWM pins 2) send text commands to Arduino 3) and receive data from Arduino over Bluetooth using the ever popular HC-05 Bluetooth over serial module or its siblings.

Andruino should work with other Bluetooth modules with some tweaking but I have only tested it with the HC-05. This is an alpha version that’s running fine on my Samsung Galaxy S2 Plus. Please share your experience running Andruino on your phone.


Andruino: A simple 2-way bluetooth-based Android controller for Arduino - [Link]

5 Jul 2013


Isolation resistance tester UT513 with a USB connectivity is a professional device able to check a quality of an insulation of installations, transformers, components, … 

Revision technicians are usually the ones, who need to measure an isolation resistance, but such a device also finds its place in bigger factories and buildings, where it is convenient to to have a possibility to periodically (often) measure a status of isolation of for example transformers, motors, leads, etc.    UT513 from company UNI-Trend belongs to a category of professional devices with wide possibilities of setting, while it still remains a simplicity of use and an intuitive control. UT513 belongs to a three-member family of UT51x devices, consisting of UT511, UT512 a UT513. Devices differ from each other mainly in the max. voltage for an isolation resistance measurement (1000, 2500, 5000V) and UT512/513 also feature a USB interface for a data transfer to PC (including a CD with a software).

UT513 is able to store to its memory up to 18 measurements. Isolation resistance can be also measured with a timer (10 seconds to 15 minutes) and the built-in timer enables to measure even a polarization index by “one click”. Polarisation index is maybe more known from optics, but don´t be misleaded :-), in electronics the  polarization index (PI) is a very worth value responding to a status of an insulation.  PI has to be usually in arrange of 2 to 5, i.e. isolation resistance of tested device after 10 minutes (connected to a testing high DC voltage) has to be 2 to 5-times higher than at measurement after the first minute (the reason is a polarization of molecules in insulation).

Function „Compare“ enables to compare measured value of an isolation resistance with a pre-set value (user-definable) and then the display reads „GOOD“ or „NG“ as – „not good“. Maximum display (with a backlight) value is up to 9999 and here we can also see an analogue bargraph. As we are already used to at Uni-Trend equipment, the testing leads are relatively very quality and robust, and also included are batteries and a mains adapter.  Detailed information will provide you the   UT513 user manual. In case of interest, please contact us at  info@soselectronic.com.

UT513 – set up a timer, apply 5000V, measure, transfer to PC … – [Link]

5 Jul 2013


Alberto Maccioni posted an update on his multi-chip opensource programmer based on a PIC18F2550. It supports PIC, I2C-SPI-MicroWire EEPROMs, some ATMEL AVRs, and (soon) other devices:

In the last few years, as serial and parallel interfaces have almost disappeared, electronics enthusiasts find even more difficult to program microcontrollers; old time programmers don’t work any more; common solutions include using USB to serial adapters (which can’t accept direct access but only slow API calls), or add-on interface chips, like FTDIxxxx, which appear substantially as serial interfaces and require custom or proprietary drivers. So why not use PIC controllers and their native USB interface? After searching a while I couldn’t find an USB programmer which was at the same time functional, free, and open source, so I decided to design one.


Open Programmer v0.8.x - [Link]

5 Jul 2013


The LTC3639 step-down regulator integrates key high performance features into one compact IC. It is capable of up to 150V input voltage and 100mA output current, utilizing synchronous rectification and low quiescent current to maintain high efficiency over a broad spectrum of load current. Its adjustable output can be programmed from 0.8V to VIN, while its fixed 1.8V, 3.3V, and 5V output settings require only three external components, saving complexity and PCB area. Furthermore, the LTC3639’s 100% duty cycle capability and simple application circuit make it an ideal high efficiency replacement for an LDO.

150V, 100mA Step-Down Regulator Requires Only Three External Components - [Link]

5 Jul 2013


Inspired by trees scientists at the University of Maryland have developed a nanobattery that uses tin-coated wood fibers to store liquid electrolytes. Replacing the lithium found in many rechargeable batteries by sodium makes the battery environmentally benign. Sodium doesn’t store energy as efficiently as lithium, so you won’t see this battery in your cell phone – instead, its low cost and common materials would make it ideal to store huge amounts of energy at once, such as solar energy at a power plant.

Existing batteries are often created on stiff bases, which are too brittle to withstand the swelling and shrinking that happens as electrons are stored in and used up from the battery. The researchers found that wood fibers are supple enough to let their sodium-ion battery with an initial capacity of 339 mAh/g last more than 400 charging cycles. This puts it among the longest lasting nanobatteries. [via]

Rechargeable Wooden Battery - [Link]

5 Jul 2013


Boris Landoni @ open-electronics.org writes:

Today we present you a stereo 10 + 10 Watts audio amplifier based on TDA7297SA, a monolithic dual bridge amplifier that is suitable to be used in projects that feature access to a single 12 volts power supply.This is a compact stereo amplifier: its field of application range from car stereo to portable audiovisual equipments (eg: for sport or public events, conferences or even emergency protection and safety mission equipements such as those needed after distaster events)The heart of the amplifier is the TDA7297SA integrated from STMicroelectronics, a monolithic dual bridge amplifier capable of delivering, in fact, 10 + 10 watts.

A versatile, powerful 10 + 10 W Audio amplifier - [Link]


5 Jul 2013


New Si50x CMEMS® Oscillators Leap Ahead of Quartz-Based Timing Devices with Superior Frequency Stability, Reliability and Programmability

Silicon Labs has developed a new low-drift, single-die MEMS oscillator fabricated using a CMOS process. By porting low-temperature MEMS technology to the SMIC foundry, they managed to build a SiGe structure on top of the passivation layer of a CMOS logic chip using an existing CMOS production line. The drift problems of dual-die devices are eliminated by selecting specific materials to counteract thermal drift. The programmable oscillators operate at up to 100 MHz with frequency stability down to 20 ppm. Higher speed devices are planned, according to a Silicon Labs’ source.

CMOS MEMS (CMEMS) technology allows data sheet performance for frequency stability to be guaranteed for ten years, including solder shift, load pulling, supply voltage variation, operating temperature range, vibration and shock. This is ten times longer than typically offered by comparable crystal and MEMS oscillators. The oscillators tightly couple the MEMS resonator with CMOS temperature sensing and compensation circuitry, ensuring a highly stable frequency output despite thermal transients and over the full industrial temperature range. [via]

New MEMS Oscillators Boast Long-term Stability - [Link]





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