Micro-displacement sensor resolves 10 microns

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An optical micro-displacement sensor from Omron Electronic Components Europe is capable of resolving 10 microns – one tenth the diameter of a human hair or the thickness of a coat of paint. by Graham Prophet @ edn-europe.com

The high resolution of the Z4D sensor suits it for paper thickness and multi-feed detection office equipment and ATMs, as well as travel detection in industrial automation systems, consumer electronics and other applications.

The Z4D-C01 locates target objects optically without the need for contact. Location is determined and movement detected by changes in the location of light reflected from the object.

iPhone Battery Charger / Tester

iphone-charger_v2-2_4

mozzwald.com has designed an iphone battery charger /tester.

I have seen technicians often replace batteries when they may not necessarily need to be or ignore the fact that they could be the cause of the issue at hand. To remedy this I designed a basic iPhone battery charging breakout board system. The system can charge a battery, has the option for expansion to support newer/other batteries and breaks out the battery status pins which can be read from a microcontroller or some other means. It consists of 6 battery connector boards (iPhone 4, 4S, 5, 5S/C, 6, 6+) and a main charging board.

iPhone Battery Charger / Tester – [Link]

Moto Mods Development Kit – Make Your Own Extension for Moto Z Phone

Moto Z Droid and Moto Z Force Droid are the new phones from Motorola. They run Android 6.0 on a Qualcomm Snapdragon 820 SoC with a lot of other features.
Motorola brought modularity to Moto Z using the hackable “Moto Mods” backplate expansion system. Motorola’s Moto Mods attach to the back of the phone with strong magnets and are hot swappable (plug and play).

According to the ANANDTech review, “Attaching a Moto Mod produces a small vibration and audible alert confirming that it has been automatically recognized. For any Mods with internal batteries, there’s a notification that pops up showing the charge level, which also appears in the battery section within the settings app and in the notification shade. There’s a dedicated “Moto Mods” page also in settings for updating the Mod’s firmware, managing its settings, and reading its instructions.“.

Images courtesy of anandtech
Images courtesy of anandtech

 

Motorola wants makers to have the ability to develop their own Moto Mods, so they collaborated with Element14, the well known distributor of technology products and solutions for electronic system design, to offer a Moto Mods Development Kit for building custom Moto Mods.

Images courtesy of developer.motorola.com
Images courtesy of developer.motorola.com

According to Element14, Moto Mods Development Kit consists of the reference Moto Mod, a perforated board for you to solder your own components to,  or HAT adapter board enables you to attach a wide variety of Raspberry Pi HATs to your Moto Mods™ Development Kit and an example cover.

HAT adapter board
HAT adapter board
From top to bottom: example cover, a perforated Board and reference Moto Mod, Images courtesy of developer.motorola.com
From top to bottom: example cover, a perforated Board and reference Moto Mod, Images courtesy of developer.motorola.com

The reference Moto Mod is the core component to interface with Moto Z, processing resources, GPIO and standard peripheral interfaces, power and charging control.

The reference Moto Mod ,Images courtesy of developer.motorola.com
The reference Moto Mod ,Images courtesy of developer.motorola.com

Motorola has created several personality cards that can be inserted into the reference Moto Mod through the 80-pin connector. Each of these personality cards is a full example with open-sourced Moto Mod firmware and an Android application.

Each personality card has a documentation page in the developer site of Moto Mod to reach all the resources needed from schematic to source code.

hw-b2b-diagram-1Moto Mod Ref

The Reference Mod Mod includes:

  • Mechanical and Electrical Interface to enable connection with Moto Z.
  • Moto Mod Microprocessor (MuC) with 96k ROM powered by a Cortex-M4 based STML476.
  • Moto High Speed Bridge.
  • 80 pin connector exposing all developer interfaces.

To develop the Moto Mod-aware applications, you can use the SDK, included in the Moto Mods development toolkit, with the requisite APIs for developing.

dev-config-diagram-5

More technical information on Moto Mods and the MDK may be found at:

About the  availability, Element14 said “Global availability for these products is due to follow in autumn 2016″.
Via: hackerboards

ESPTool – A WiFi Security Tool

Daniel Grießhaber over hackaday.io created a project called ESPTool. It is a tool to test WiFi networks security and to demonstrate how easy it is to crack a WiFi password or jam a WiFi network. Daniel designed ESPTool for education and self-test purpose.

ESPTool_img

The Device has SSD1306 based OLED display, microSD card socket, 3 general purpose buttons, ESP8266-12E module, TPS63031 Buck-/Boost converter with an input range from 1.8V – 5.5V, MCP73831 Single-Cell LiPo Charger Chip and CP2012 USB to UART converter chip.

ESPTool_SCH

The firmware of ESPTool has the following layers of attacks, according to Daniel’s documentation:

  • Layer 1:

Since the ESPs Radio is not really configurable, it is not possible to create a WiFi Jammer that works by emitting broadband noise or any other Layer 1 attacks.

  • Layer 2:
    • Deauthentification attack
    • Collecting authentication frames and save the keys to SD card for later decryption (using a wordlist on a computer, the ESP neither has enough memory nor enough processing power to crack them on the system)
    • arp spoofing and session hijacking when connected (needs investigation)
    • evil twin hotspot
  • Layer 3 (after connecting to an AP):
    • Host discovery (IP Scanner)
    • Ping flooding (ICMP Pings)
  • Layer 4 (after connecting to an AP):
    • Port Scan on Host

 

ESPTool_PCB

The source code and the design files, using Eagle CAD, (SCH & BRD) can be found here.

[Project page over hackaday.io]

SMDGuide – A gift for all electronic enthusiasts

SMDGuide_011

Alberto @ pighixxx.com has published the first pages of a series of SMD components guides. Total guide will consist of 20 pages.

The definitive guide to SMD components!
Cheat Sheets, Package Types, Conversions, Size Codes and more…

SMDGuide – A gift for all electronic enthusiasts – [Link]

Build a $1 per Watt parallelizable MPPT controller

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Jonathan Bruneau designed a $1/W maximum power point tracker used to extract maximum power from solar panels and published his project on hackaday.io:

Maximum Power Point Tracking (MPPT) is a technique whereupon special electronics attempts to extract the optimal amount of energy from a solar panel. This optimal point fluctuates in function of a variety of factors including: temperature, quantity of incoming light, solar panel age, etc.

Current MPPT controllers tend to be expensive. They range from tens of dollars for 3W supplies to hundreds of dollars for 100W and above. Lower costs can be achieved but typically trade-off functionality essential for proper MPPT operation. This makes MPPTs poor candidates for cost sensitive applications

If the cost could be reduced to a more attractive price point, MPPT controllers could become synonymous with solar panels, opening doors for new renewable applications.

Build a $1 per Watt parallelizable MPPT controller – [Link]

Silicon-air Battery A New Achievement in Energy Storage Area

Researchers from Jülich Research Center (Jülich, Germany) announced their new invention, a silicon-air battery. The new battery features high energy density so it’s a lighter and smaller battery solution.

silicon-air-battery

Silicon-air battery is made of silicon which means it’s cheap to make from virtually unlimited resources rather than a rare earth material. It can deliver energy for up to 46 days (about 1000 hour). It’s a big step but it not means it’s the perfect solution. This new type of battery suffers from short lifetime of just a few minutes, therefore the researchers made a workaround by refills the electrolyte from time to time using a pump system.

About how it works, the news states that “As long as the silicon anode is in contact with the electrolytes, the battery will generate electricity. With this method, the Jülich battery remained active until the silicon was used up after more than 1100 hours. Once the electrode is used up, it can be reactivated by replacing the anode.”

Via: elektormagazine

Bq501210 the Wireless Power Transmitter from TI

Texas Instruments (TI) announced the Qi-Certified Wireless Power (WPC) v1.2 solution for 15-W operation wireless power transmission for Smart Phones, Tablets, and Other Handheld devices, Point-of-Sale devices and other custom wireless power applications.

Bq501210 supports Bi-directional Communication and fast charge operation with compatible receivers. The user is informed for the state of charge by 10 configurable LED codes that indicate also fault status.

If you’re not familiar with the term of wireless power transmission then let’s see how TI describes it in the datasheet. It basically consists of a transmitter and receiver coils. When the receiver coil is positioned on the transmitter coil with some distance (wireless), magnetic coupling occurs when the transmitter coil is driven. The flux is coupled into the secondary coil, which induces a voltage and current flows. The secondary voltage is rectified, and power can be transferred effectively to a load.

According to the datasheet, bq501210 supports multiple levels of protection against heating metal objects placed in the magnetic field.

bq501210_BD

TI provides an evaluation module bq501210EVM-756 costs 150$ with the following features:

  • WPC v1.2 15-W charging capability with bq55221 receiver.
  • 5-W solution for WPC v1.1 receivers.
  • 15-V to 19-V input and fixed operatiing frequency for full 15-W results.
  • 12-V input for reduced power (> 10W) solutions.
  • Enchanced Foreign Object Detection (FOD) with FOD ping detecting objects prior to power transfer.
  • WPC v1.2 FOD, WPC v1.1 FOD and WPC v1.0 Parasitic metal Object Detection (PMOD).
  • Transmitter-coil mounting pad providing the corect ereceiver interface.
  • Compact power section design using the bq500100 NexFET power stage.
  • Wurth 760 308 141 transmitter coil with no magnet.
  • LED and audio indication of power transfer.

bq501210evm-756

Bq501210 is available in 9*9mm 64-VQFN package and is priced at US$3.75 in 1,000-unit quantities.

Via: eeweb

ClearFog Base from SolidRun A New 90$ Single Board Computer

SoildRun launched ClearFog Base, a SBC (Single Board Computer) designed for IoT and networking applications.

ClearFog Base includes SoM (System on Module) designed by SolidRun too and it is based on Marvell’s ARMADA A388 SoC (System On Chip) with Dual core ARM Cortex A9 @ up to 1.6 GHZ and supports Linux Kernel 3.x and OpenWrt OS.

armada-38x-microsom-block-diagrammicrosom-a388-top-transparent

The Board features up to 2GB storage and optional 8GB uSD/4GB eMMC with the following connectivity options, 1× mPCIE, 1×USB 3.0 port, 2 ×Port dedicated Ethernet  and 1×SFP.

ClearFog_TOPClearFog_Down

ClearFog Base has a mikroBUS™ connector to add accessories and supports MikroElektronika’s Click board modules. More than 150 Click boards are available, including I/O, wireless, sensors, transceivers, displays, encoders, pushbuttons, and advanced GPS modules.

ClearFogFeatures

The price of ClearFog base can reach 117$ with the optional power adapter, 8GB SD card and 4GB eMMC.

Via: cnx-software