DIY pocket laser engraver

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Photon printer, a 3D printable laser engraver build using DVD drives by Isolt:

This is an entry for the Light It Up contest on the grounds that a laser diode is a specialised form on light emitting diode.
The Photon Printer started out as a quick weekend project then quickly escalated when I saw that there was room for improvement in the current designs. The design turned out to be quite fun and I really enjoyed seeing it work at the end.

DIY pocket laser engraver – [Link]

Non-Invasive Smart Electricity Meter

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A simple Non-Invasive Smart Electricity Meter using Spark Core. By Yonas Leguesse @ hackster.io:

A non invasive current sensor is connected to the spark core (with a few components), and clamped around a cable in the Mains distribution unit. No wiring is required, however Do not try this at home, as the Mains Distribution Unit should not be tampered with unless one is Licensed to do so.

The back end is Web Application hosted on a LAMP (Linux Apache MySql PHP) setup. Initially it was hosted on a raspberry pi on a LAN, but then I decided to host it on a hosted server. Both instances worked well, its just a matter of preference.

The spark core simply takes periodic readings and sends them to the server, where all of the calculations and filtering is done.

Non-Invasive Smart Electricity Meter – [Link]

RELATED POSTS

BE220 – intelligent embedded platform for even better price!

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Well-proven embedded mini PC with Windows CE – BEGA220 are now available in the IP66 protection class.

Bega220 as a universal microcomputer with an OS and a 7“ touch display already found its place in many applications. Now company Bolymin launched on the market an improved version resistant to dust and water (IP66) – the BE220C module. IP66 resistance applies to a front side and a bezel, what´s in the vast majority cases fully sufficient, because in praxis the module is always installed into a target device.

BE220C maintains all features of the Bega220 series. Functionality, interfaces and pinout of a communication protocol are the same. BE220C is supplied with a cable for connection to a communication connector on a bottom side of the module and also with a USB reduction (for connection of a keyboard or a mouse). The module should be powered by a 12V/1-1,2A adapter with a 5,5/2,5 mm DC connector. Also supplied is the CD with a user manual, software development kit (SDK) and code examples.

BE220C can be used (similarly like Bega220) for control of any devices or processes while maintaining an advantage of an easy programming in the Windows environment and compatibility with widely available software for a PC.

Detailed information will provide you the BE220C flyer and the BEGA220 user manual.

BE220 – intelligent embedded platform for even better price! – [Link]

Gain the intelligent display module suitable also for use with Raspberry Pi

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Set uLCD-43PT-PI from 4D Systems allows to use the display module in any application and in addition, also with the popular micro PC Raspberry Pi. Using the included serial adapter and connecting cord it´s possible to start programming the display module within few seconds.

Gain set of uLCD-43PT-PI in value of 150, – EUR for free!

All that is necessary is to answer us a simple question:

What is the name of the graphics processor used in display uLCD-43PT?

uLCD-43PT-PI module (driven by a Picaso processor) includes a rich set of serial commands that can accept the Raspberry PI to draw basic shapes (lines, rectangles, circles), text, images, sound and writing data to the USD. 5V power supply is taken over the bus directly from the Raspberry Pi (or PC USB port) and therefore requires no external power adapter.

The display can be programmed using the (free) software 4D Systems Workshop 4 IDE Software. To program through regular PC you need to purchase 4D programming cable. For use in real applications a quality frame 4DBEZEL-43 can be a useful. It´s a ready-made solution with brass bushings and accurately designed metal spring clips.


Gain the intelligent display module suitable also for use with Raspberry Pi – [Link]

µGFX – embedded library for Displays and Touchscreens

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µGFX is a library to interface all kinds of different displays and touchscreens to embedded devices. The main goal of the project is it to provide a set of feature rich tools like a complete GUI toolkit while keeping the system requirements at a minimum.

µGFX can either be run on top of an operating system like ChibiOS/RT, FreeRTOS and many others or on a bare-metal system.

The library is entirely written in C. It can be used in C++ applications without any modifications.
It’s free to use without any usage restrictions for non-commercial products and open hardware projects. Commercial licenses are available at low prices.

µGFX – embedded library for Displays and Touchscreens – [Link]

Measure Capacitance with Arduino

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by Maximous @ instructables.com:

This tutorial provides a guide on how to set up an Arduino to measure the capacitance of a capacitor. This can be useful if the capacitor is unlabeled or if it is self-built.

Capacitance is an object’s ability to store an electric charge. Reasonably, this object is referred to as a capacitor. A capacitor that stores this charge in an electric field between two conductive plates is known as a parallel plate capacitor.

Measure Capacitance with Arduino – [Link]

IBM shows working devices fabricated at 7nm node

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by Graham Prophet @ edn-europe.com:

An alliance led by IBM Research, together with New York academic institution SUNY Polytech and with Samsung and GlobalFoundries, has produced 7nm (nanometer) node test chips with functioning transistors.

Continuing semiconductor scaling down to feature sizes of 7 nm is expected to yield further gains in performance, and lower power levels, but in IBM’s words, “[its] researchers had to bypass conventional semiconductor manufacturing approaches”. The finFET-style transistors in the demonstrator were constructed with silicon-germanium (SiGe) channels, and the lithography that defined them employed Extreme Ultraviolet (EUV) technology, “at multiple levels”. [That is, the use of EUV was not reserved for definition of a single critical part of the transistor structure.]

IBM shows working devices fabricated at 7nm node – [Link]

Writing a python module to simulate a LCD

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by Prashant Mohta:

So recently I got a Raspberry pi and a 16×2 character LCD screen , I thought , lets make a simple game that can be played on the lcd. my first instinct was to code directly for the lcd on the pi , but as I started coding I realized that the clutter of having the lcd connected wasn’t really necessary while i am programming the game’s logic .

I decided to make a python module that gives me the lcd output on my monitor , this way i no longer need to work with my lcd connected and can even code the game on my laptop and test the results quickly . Moreover once im done with the coding , i can simply replace the module code , for the lcd control code , and my game is ready to deploy.

Writing a python module to simulate a LCD – [Link]

App note: Eliminate noise through proper supply bypass filtering

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Power supply filtering, an application note from Maxim Integrated:

If sensitive analog systems are run from one supply without the sufficient bypassing to eliminate noise, undesired degradation in a system’s performance will result. This application note provides insight into suitable techniques to overcome this roadblock.

App note: Eliminate noise through proper supply bypass filtering – [Link]

Research Points the way to Safer Lithium Batteries

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by Martin Cooke @ elektormagazine.com:

A paper published in the June 17th edition of Nature Communications describes how the addition of two chemicals to the electrolyte of lithium metal batteries can prevent the formation of dendrites. These are needles of lithium which grow in the battery and eventually puncture the barrier between the two battery halves. Their formation can cause short circuits in the battery which leads to overheating and sometimes combustion.

According to the paper this breakthrough could help remove a major barrier to the future development of lithium-sulfur and lithium-air batteries. These promising new battery technologies could store up to 10 times more energy per weight than batteries in use today in consumer electronics and electric cars.

Research Points the way to Safer Lithium Batteries – [Link]