MIcrocontroller design course. ECE 4760 deals with microcontrollers as components in electronic design and embedded control. There is a large final project. See also: http://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLEB09A7C8641987A8
Full course materials and project documentationare available at: http://people.ece.cornell.edu/land/courses/ece4760/
Lectures from Cornell, Spring 2012 ECE4760 “designing with microcontrollers” - [Link]
Small photovoltaic modules of the SMH series will reliably solve the power sourcing of low-power devices.
With modern components, it´s no problem to design devices with power consumption in units of mA and less. That´s why already one small solar module combined with a backup battery or a supercapacitor often solves power sourcing of devices intended for usage in places without electric energy, or in places where a connection to electricity would be inadequately expensive.
SMH series belongs to a segment of small solar modules primarily intended to be built-in to target devices – measuring systems, sensors, communication devices, … High quality construction and a high reliability predestine for various industrial devices. Power in a range of 407-1023 mW is sufficient for many applications including various control units (for example with low-power bistable relays).
SMH3, SMH4 and SMH8 are made of monocrystalline silicon with a UV resistant encapsulation of the IP65 class, optimized for outdoor use (polyurethane, 1.8mm overall thickness of module). As already their name says, they consist of 3,4 or 8 cells, what results in an output voltage of 1.65V, 2.2V or 4.4V. Leads are constructed as soldering pads on a rear side of modules. All modules are 100% electrically and optically tested. Color of modules is dark blue (almost black).
Supply your devices even in the desert - [Link]
This is a simple li-ion charger without a dedicated li-ion charger IC. This circuit can be used to efficiently and intelligently charge any single cell Li-ion battery pack like mobile battery, digicam battery, etc.
- Charging via mini-USB connector which is very common.
- Charging status display by LED
- Simple circuit by using opamp, resistor, and not by any complex dedicated IC or micro-controller.
- Charges completely drained (0V) battery packs.
- Max charging current 500mA (limited by USB supply), depending on battery.
Simple USB DIY Li-ion battery charger - [Link]
An open source graphical electronic parts organizer: [via]
ICDBNavigator Electronic parts organizer - [Link]
This embedded MP3 module is an universal and compact circuit (37 mm x 27 mm) for playing MP3 audio files. The MP3 module can be used in embedded systems. The MP3 files (up 65,536) are stored in a micro SDcard. Controlling the module could be done either by buttons and digital inputs or vSDia TTL serial interfaces.
The MP3 module (developed by Luca Pascarella info at lpsystems dot eu) is based on MP3 converter VS1011 and a PIC24 and can play up to 65,536 songs or voice messages stored in a microSD.
Embedded MP3 module - [Link]
Taiwan-based Macronix has found a solution for a weakness in flash memory fadeout. A limitation of flash memory is simply that eventually it cannot be used; the more cells in the memory chips are erased, the less useful to store data. The write-erase cycles degrade insulation; eventually the cell fails. “Flash wears out after being programmed and erased about 10,000 times,” said the IEEE Spectrum. Engineers at Macronix have a solution that moves flash memory over to a new life. They propose a “self-healing” NAND flash memory solution that can survive over 100 million cycles.
“Self-healing” NAND flash memory - [Link]
MariaMole is an open-source project being developed by me, on my spare time. But it’s already fully functional. Check some of its features:
- Runs over Arduino install: MariaMole uses the Arduino software that you have installed, so all your Arduino configurations are kept. If you want, You can still use the original Arduino side-by-side to MariaMole.
- Workspace support multiple projects at the same time. Workspaces are special folders where you can group any number of projects. This helps you keep the projects organized, and allows working with several projects at the same time. If you have used Visual Studio, CodeLite, Code::Blocks, Eclipse or any other modern IDE, you know that this makes a difference. Specially if you’re designing a system with multiple Arduino boards talking each other, you’re gonna love the workspace feature!
- Multiple serial port consoles at the same time: And more: Once you open a serial console, it’s always available. You don’t have to close or re-open it again to upload your project to Arduino
- Files use open-formats: All project information and configuration are stored on a single XML file (Except for code!)
- Building process configurable: The Arduino IDE does a great job behind the scenes, but, sometimes, you’re gonna need to fine-tune the building sequence, add or replace libraries or change the compiler options. Of course, unless you ask for it, MariaMole works the same way as Arduino, building the whole project for you.
- Imports Arduino examples and sketches: You won’t have any problems to reuse your old sketches.
- Easily import Arduino libraries: A Wizard windows helps you with that. And also with adding new files to projects, importing other files, configuring the projects, etc.
- Color-themes: Do you prefer a dark color-scheme for code editing? No problem. This is the default for MariaMole. Or do you prefer writing your code against a white background? No problem yet! MariaMole comes with a light theme too. And you can design your own theme!
MariaMole – an Arduino IDE for advanced developers - [Link]
Here is a montage of photos that I took while modifying my iPhone 4s to build in wireless charging. There are wireless charging options out there such as the powermat system but they all involve slipping on a jacket around the iPhone. I wanted to internalize the technology so that the beauty of the iPhone is not hidden away! It’s taken a while to complete but it’s finally done.
iPhone 4s Wireless Charging Hack - [Link]
The INA230 is a current-shunt and power monitor with an I2C interface that features 16 programmable addresses. The INA230 monitors both shunt voltage drops and bus supply voltage. Programmable calibration value, conversion times, and averaging, combined with an internal multiplier, enable direct readouts of current in amperes and power in watts.
INA230 – Precision digital/current/voltage/power monitor - [Link]
Researchers at Rice University (USA) have developed a micron-scale spatial light modulator (SLM) similar to those currently used in sensing and imaging devices, but with the potential to run several orders of magnitude faster. Their ‘antenna on a chip’ operates in 3D ‘free space’ instead of the two-dimensional space of conventional semiconductor devices.
A device that looks like a tiny washboard may clean the clocks of current commercial products used to manipulate infrared light.
New research by the Rice University lab of Qianfan Xu has produced a micron-scale spatial light modulator (SLM) like those used in sensing and imaging devices, but with the potential to run orders of magnitude faster. Unlike other devices in two-dimensional semiconducting chips, the Rice chips work in three-dimensional “free space.”
In current optical computing devices, light is confined to two-dimensional circuitry and travels in waveguides from point to point. According to the researchers, 2D systems ignore the massive multiplexing capability of optical systems arising from the fact that multiple light beams can propagate in the same space without affecting each other. [via]
“Antenna on Chip” Manipulates Light at Warp Speed - [Link]