Posts with «arduino» label

Held Captive by Arduino and Multiple RFID Readers

If you’re the kind of person who has friends, and/or leaves the confines of the basement from time to time, we hear that these “Escape Rooms” are all the rage. Basically you get locked into a room with a couple other people and have to solve various problems and puzzles until you’ve finally made enough progress that they let you out. Which actually sounds a lot like the working conditions here at Hackaday HQ, except they occasionally slip some pizza rolls under the door for us which is nice.

Whichever side you find yourself on in one of these lighthearted hostage situations, knowledge of this multi-tag RFID lock created by [Annaane] may come in handy. By connecting multiple MFRC522 RFID readers to an Arduino Uno, she’s come up with a method of triggering a device (like an electronic door lock) only when the appropriate combination of RFID tags have been arranged. With a little imagination, this allows for some very complex puzzle scenarios which are sure to keep your prisoners enthralled until you can lower the lotion down to them.

Her code allows you to configure the type and number of RFID cards required to trigger one of the Arduino’s digital pins, which usually would be connected to a relay to fire off whatever device you want. The Arduino sketch is also setup to give “hints” to the player by way of a status LED: fast blinking let’s you know the tag scanned is wrong, and slow blinking means you don’t have enough scanned in yet.

The video after the break shows some highlights of the build, as well as a quick demonstration of how both the RFID “combination” and manual override can be used to trigger the attached relay.

Hackers do love RFID. Using them for physical access control is a fairly common project around these parts, and we’ve even seen similar setups for the digital realm.

Weekend Watch: Making in Mexico with Hacedores

An active makerspace in Mexico City partners with Make: to tranlate books into Spanish.

Read more on MAKE

The post Weekend Watch: Making in Mexico with Hacedores appeared first on Make: DIY Projects and Ideas for Makers.

A Two-Range OLED Capacitance Meter

If you are just starting out in electronics, you need tools. But it is hard to build all your tools. Even though we see a lot of soldering station builds, you really ought to have a soldering iron to build the station. It is hard to troubleshoot a multimeter you just built if you don’t have a multimeter. However, a capacitance meter is a handy piece of gear, relatively simple to build, and you should be able to get it working without an existing capacitance meter. [gavinlyonsrepo] presents a simple design using an Arduino, an OLED display, and a few components.

The principle of operation is classic. On one range, the Arduino charges the capacitor through one resistor and discharges it through another while timing the operation. The amount of time taken corresponds to the capacitance.

The other range doesn’t use external components but relies on the internal resistance of the Arduino and the stray capacitance in the chip and the board. Because these parameters vary, you’ll need to calibrate the device with a capacitor of known value.

This is one of those projects that would have been more complicated before microcontrollers. With an Arduino or similar device, though, it is pretty straightforward.

We looked at a project that explores the second method in depth quite some time ago. We’ve seen some similar meters in the past you might enjoy.

The MKR family gets bigger with two new IoT boards!

We’re excited to announce two new wireless connectivity boards to help streamline Internet of Things development, the MKR WiFi 1010 and MKR NB 1500.

The first of the boards is the MKR WiFi 1010, which offers low power consumption and has been designed not only to speed up and simplify the prototyping of WiFi-based IoT applications, but also to be embedded in production IoT applications that require WiFi connectivity. The board is an evolution of the existing Arduino MKR1000, but now comes equipped with an ESP32-based module manufactured by U-blox. This key element delivers 2.4GHz WiFi and Bluetooth communications capability, along with leading RF and power performance: the ESP32 is a highly flexible device that provides adjustable power output, enabling optimal trade-offs between communication range, data rate, and power consumption.

Fully compatible with the Arduino IT cloud, the MKR1010 also offers simple migration from other Arduino boards, and uses open-source WiFi firmware, which makes it easy to reprogram for upgrading or to repair any security flaws. A significant feature is the MKR1010’s two standalone programmable processors – the first based on ARM processor core technology, the second based on a dual-core Espressif IC – making the board a high-performance solution that can distribute its workload across its dual-processor system. Another major feature is the integration of a secure authentication module – Microchip’s ECC508 – which uses crypto authentication to secure TLS network communications and connections.

The second board to be introduced is the MKR NB 1500, which employs the new low-power NB-IoT (narrowband IoT) standard, designed to work over cellular/LTE networks. When combined with the ease of use of the Arduino ecosystem, the MKR1500 becomes an excellent choice for applications in remote areas such as on-field monitoring systems and remote-controlled LTE-enabled modules.

Designed for global deployment, it supports transmissions via AT&T, T-Mobile USA, Telstra, Verizon over the Cat M1/NB1 deployed bands 2, 3, 4, 5, 8, 12, 13, 20 and 28. The NB-IoT communications technology makes use of existing LTE cellular networks and delivers significantly faster communications than alternative IoT networks such as LoRa and Sigfox, while also having a low impact on battery consumption. In addition, when compared to typical GSM or 3G cellular connectivity, wake up times and connections are much faster, which enables significant power saving. Importantly, both of the new boards are fully compatible with the Arduino Uno, Mega and existing MKR hardware. Also common to both boards is their MKR footprint, as well as the same wide range of available interfaces, including I2S, I2C, UART and SPI. Both boards also operate at 3.3V and offer input/output options including 22 digital I/Os – 12 with PWM outputs – and seven analog inputs.

“The new boards bring new communication options to satisfy the needs of the most demanding use cases, giving the users one of the widest range of options on the market of certified products,” said Arduino co-founder and CTO Massimo Banzi.

“NB-IoT and CAT M1 are gradually becoming a reality in many countries in the world. With MKR NB 1500 we wanted to create a versatile and standard technology to democratize the access to the new networks, enabling our customers  to take advantage of this big opportunity early on,” said Fabio Violante, CEO of Arduino. “We strongly believe the MKR NB 1500 has all the ingredients to become the go to product for many professional use cases”.

“As far as the MKR 1010 is concerned, we had the opportunity to learn a lot from all the WiFi products that we had on the market for several years. Based on customers’ feedback we thought it was now time to release a new ultra reliable board that was suitable for a variety of use cases that were difficult to support with other products,” added Fabio Violante. “The other aspect that we love about the products is that the firmware of the WiFi part is developed by us and open-source, opening new opportunity for continuous improvements and contributions from the community.”

Both the MKR WiFi 1010 and the MKR NB 1500 will be available on the Arduino online store starting in June 2018.

Arduino goes to college with the new Arduino Engineering Kit!

We’re excited to announce the Arduino Engineering Kit, the first product released as a result of our new partnership with MathWorks, to reinforce the importance of Arduino at the university level in the fields of engineering, Internet of Things, and robotics.

The Arduino Engineering Kit, which will be available for purchase starting today on the Arduino online store, consists of three cutting-edge, Arduino-based projects and will teach students how to build modern electronic devices – challenging them intellectually and helping them develop physical engineering skills that will better prepare them to enter the commercial market following graduation. In addition to the hardware, after registering online, students and educators will have access to a dedicated e-learning platform and other learning materials. The kit also includes a one-year individual license for MATLAB and Simulink, providing the user with hands-on experience in system modeling and embedded algorithm development.

Following the global success of Arduino CTC 101, a program tailored for upper secondary schools, the Arduino Engineering Kit enables college students and educators to incorporate core engineering concepts like control systems, inertial sensing, signal and imaging processing, and robotics with the support of MATLAB and Simulink programming. These software packages are the base of industry-standard tools for algorithm development, system modeling, and simulation, all of which will be required in their future careers.

Each Arduino Engineering Kit comes with a durable and stackable plastic toolbox for easy storage and years of reuse. Inside the box is an Arduino MKR1000 board, several customized parts, and a complete set of electrical and mechanical components needed to assemble all three projects:

  • Self-Balancing Motorcycle: This motorcycle will maneuver on its own on various terrains and remain upright using a flywheel for balance.
  • Mobile Rover: This vehicle can navigate between given reference points, move objects with a forklift, and much more.
  • Whiteboard Drawing Robot: This amazing robot can take a drawing it’s given and replicate it on a whiteboard.

“We designed the Arduino Engineering Kit the way we would have liked to have learned mechatronics, control algorithms, state machines, and complex sensing when we were in our first years of engineering school: in a fun and challenging way,” said David Cuartielles, Arduino co-founder and Arduino Education CTO. “It’s all about hands-on activities built on top of well-grounded theoretical concepts. But more importantly, after finishing the basic materials, there’s plenty of flexibility to experiment, for the students to deviate and test their engineering creativity.”

Arduino Mega + former nuclear indicator = coolest Nixie clock ever?

There have been countless clocks made using Arduino boards, but you’ve likely never seen anything quite like this display. It features four Nixie tubes that alternate between the time, temperature, pressure, and relative humidity, in addition to a clock-like hand as a secondary indication of atmospheric pressure. That is interesting in itself, but to top it off, the synchroscope display housing used is actually recycled from a nuclear power plant!

An Arduino Mega coordinates data from the sensors and an RTC module to control the Nixie tubes via driver ICs, along with a micro servo to move the pressure indicator. Power for the electronics is provided by three separate transformers in order to accommodate the tubes. 

The clock displays the time from the top of the minute to 15 sec in, and then displays the temperature (F), then back to time until the bottom of the minute (30 sec.), then it displays atmospheric pressure (mm Hg), then back to time until 45 sec into the minute and displays relative humidity. Upon reaching 60 sec. it increments the time and repeats the cycle. The BMP280 has a very poor temperature sensing capability and is not nearly as accurate as a DS18B20 waterproof temperature sensor that I used in another project of mine. I may just swap this out. Also I had a nice mesh cage around the sensors to protect them from damage and this too led to inaccurate results so I modified that as well. The indicator arrow is scaled for the low and highest pressures found in my state. the indicator arrow does a good job of showing changes in the pressure when a storm or clear skies are developing.

A full write-up on the build can be found here and the Arduino code in this repository.

Soundproofing A CNC Mill Conversion

The Proxxon MF70 is a nice desktop sized milling machine with a lot of useful add-on accessories available for it, making it very desirable for a hacker to have one in his or her home workshop. But its 20000 rpm spindle can cause quite the racket and invite red-faced neighbors. Also, how do you use a milling machine in your home-workshop without covering the whole area in metal chips and sawdust? To solve these issues, [Tim Lebacq] is working on Soundproofing his CNC mill conversion.

To meet his soundproof goal, he obviously had to first convert the manual MF70 to a CNC version. This is fairly straightforward and has been done on this, and similar machines, in many different ways over the years. [Tim] stuck with using the tried-and-tested controller solution consisting of a Raspberry Pi, an Arduino Uno and a grbl shield sandwich, with stepper motor drivers for the three NEMA17 motors. The electronics are housed inside the reclaimed metal box of an old power supply. Since the Proxxon MF70 is already designed to accept a CNC conversion package, mounting the motors and limit switches is pretty straightforward making it easy for [Tim] to make the upgrade.

Soundproofing the box is where he faced unknown territory. The box itself is made from wooden frames lined with particle board. A pair of drawer slides with bolt-action locks is used for the front door which opens vertically up. He’s also thrown in some RGB strips controlled via the Raspberry-Pi for ambient lighting and status indications. But making it soundproof had him experimenting with various materials and techniques. Eventually, he settled on a lining of foam sheets topped up with a layer of — “bubble wrap” ! It seems the uneven surface of the bubble wrap is quite effective in reducing sound – at least to his ears. Time, and neighbours, will tell.

Maybe high density “acoustic foam” sheets would be more effective (the ones similar to “egg crate” style foam sheets, only more dense)? Cleaning the inside of the box could be a big challenge when using such acoustic foam, though. What would be your choice of material for building such a sound proof box? Let us know in the comments below. Going back many years, we’ve posted about this “Portable CNC Mill” and a “Mill to CNC Conversion” for the Proxxon MF70. Seems like a popular machine among hackers.

Get a feel for your computing energy usage with this setup

Norbert Heinz, aka “HomoFaciens,” is no stranger to making versions of modern-day equipment in unusual ways, but what about the way that this equipment is actually powered? It’s not something that we normally consider if an AC adapter is nearby; you simply plug it into the wall and “free” power flows to your device.

Heinz’s project, however, runs processing systems including an Arduino Uno, a Raspberry Pi, and a SIMATIC IOT2020 using not wall power or even a battery, but via chemical energy converted by himself through a hand crank, along with a model airplane engine. The setup uses geared DC motors acting as generators, while the eye-opening results are displayed on a 16×2 LCD screen.

Check out the video below and the project’s write-up to see how its done. And by all means, make sure you do your experiments in a well-ventilated area if you’re going to use a combustion engine!

Arduino Blog 10 May 16:28
arduino  featured  uno  

This Arduino-controlled machine draws on textile with wax

Batik is a fabric decoration technique where wax is applied by hand to cloth that is then died, leaving behind beautiful patterns. While interesting, doing this manually is time-consuming and requires quite a bit of skill to properly execute. In a new take on this traditional technique, makers Olivia De Gouveia and Eugenia Morpurgo decided to make a machine to create wax patterns automatically.

What they came up with is a gantry-style robot that moves molten wax over a surface using a tempeature-controlled pen, with the help of an Arduino Mega with a RAMPS 1.4 shield. In theory, the device allows for an infinite printing area, and can be used to draw decorative patterns or even cutting paths for clothing. 

More information is available on GitHub and on the Digital Wax Print website!

There’s no limit to the connected sex toys you can build at home

NSFW: This article contains links to and descriptions of explicit sexual acts including BDSM play that some may find uncomfortable. The individuals included in this report are consenting adults who observe proper safety procedures in their play.

The voice-enabled Mistress Alexa may be Deviant Designs' most famous creation yet, but it's only one of a fleet of smart sex toys that its creators have dreamed up. British couple Gary and Kirsty are building new smart devices for BDSM play on a monthly basis. Thanks to Arduino hardware and a 3D printer, there are few limits to what can be achieved with a little practice. I toured some of the other adult toys made in the last year.

Source: Deviant Designs (Patreon)

Engadget 09 May 18:00