Jump to content


  • Content Count

  • Joined

  • Last visited

  • Days Won


Reputation Activity

  1. Like
    abecedarian got a reaction from L.R.A in TLC5940 with MSP430G2553 wiring schematic   
  2. Like
    abecedarian got a reaction from bluehash in Scan Interface Applications - Five Members Win A Target Board And An MSP-FET   
    Everybody has probably already come across these, but just in case, TI has reference designs for several sensor solutions using ESI:
  3. Like
    abecedarian reacted to igor in ESI Project: Water Usage Monitoring   
    As far as the microcomputer and ESI module - what is the point/benefit of using the ESI module if you have separate micros, wireless transmission, etc. going to feed them?  When I skimmed the ESI module description (and from summaries posted in the competition thread) I was under the impression that the point of the module was to be able to massage data without waking up the MCU (as a way of saving power).  (Or possibly as an auxiliary processor, offloading tasks from the MCU that are beyond its' abilities.)  Seems like the radios and other micros running the sensor nodes, plus the radio receiver at the central node will be slurping up enough power that it won't make much difference whether the central computer wakes up, or sleeps and let the ESI module handle things.
    On another note.  Will you also be tracking the resources put into the project?  (Time, power it consumes, parts, embodied resources involved in making the parts, etc.)  Seems like that could be an additional reinforcement of lesson in conservation and effective use of resources. 
    Occasionally I have run into discussions of an idea for saving resources where it seems likely that just the discussion of the idea is consuming more resources than implementing the idea could possibly save.  
    Helpful perspective for such things is to use a rough quantification of how much resources a person uses in living per minute, hour, etc.  Gives perspective on - e.g. if I spend 10 minutes posting on this web site about something, how much energy, water, have I just used, how much waste have I just produced, has the benefit from what I said or learned there been worth/offset the input of resources.
    I hope this doesn't come across as too negative.  One may of course derive pleasure from a hobby, and prototypes/experiments are part of the expensive prelude to production versions/practical application.  So the intent of my comment is to suggest ways to add to the levels of instruction you can provide with your project, not to disparage.  
    As far as monitoring the energy use - isn't water heating one of the major energy uses in a bathroom.  (That and space heating to keep the bathroom warm to start with.)  Maybe add those as future work.
    Depending on what your climate is like, could also think about monitoring humidity in the bathroom (while you are at it), with an eye towards mold prevention.  (In some climates this can be a problem.)
    I enjoy reading about various home monitoring systems, (have some ideas about furnace monitoring in my todo list) and look forward to reading about this project.
  4. Like
    abecedarian reacted to bobnova in ESI Project: Water Usage Monitoring   
    Cool project. I've been eyeballing water consumption monitoring as a project I want to try sometime, so I'll definitely be watching this!
    On the electrical side there will probably be enough space and free processing power on the MCU that sits in the electrical box (or on the wiring) with the sensors to chew on the data and spit out either a hall effect style "tick" every X watt/seconds (watt/minutes, watt/hours, whatever your units end up being), or send a packet every X seconds saying that Y watt/whatevers have been used. That would leave the ESI bits on the base station free to deal with the water sensors.
    My basic thought process is that anything that can run a radio should be able to turn even a basic amps/volts over time sine wave into a digitally storeable / transmittable number in the ~16ms period a 60Hz sine wave gives you. Monitor one full cycle, spend the next cycle calculating, send the data off every 60 cycles. Something like that.
    I'd love to see water sensors powered by water flow.
  5. Like
    abecedarian got a reaction from Fred in Scan Interface Applications - Five Members Win A Target Board And An MSP-FET   
    Everybody has probably already come across these, but just in case, TI has reference designs for several sensor solutions using ESI:
  6. Like
    abecedarian reacted to bobnova in ESI Project: Digital tachometer, speedometer, and intelligent shift light   
    Recently there was a contest for applications using TI's ESI hardware rotation/flow sensing peripheral, I was one of the winners of that. Actually TI did a pretty cool thing and gave the prize (target board and programmer) to everybody who entered rather than just their favorite five. Go TI!
    In any event, here is product pitch I submitted:
    I also submitted a more advanced version that ties into the fuel injectors and computes instant and average mileage, but I may or may not get to that in a reasonable time period.
    This is my project thread for this project, if you hadn't guessed.
    I'll be updating this first post as progress continues, as well as making more posts in the thread.
    I welcome any/all input, feature ideas, suggestions, comments, etc.
    I'm hoping to begin work on prototype code later today, I'll probably start off using a MSP430G2553 rather than a FRAM w/ESI chip, as I'd much rather blow up a $2.70 chip than a $25 launchpad or a FRAM MCU that isn't available for sale yet. I do have a FR5969 launchpad, which has the ESI bits in it as well, that will go into use once I make sure the inputs are at the voltage(s) I think they are.
  7. Like
    abecedarian reacted to bluehash in Scan Interface Applications - Five Members Win A Target Board And An MSP-FET   
    ------- Looks like I got everyone ------
    List is closed. Thank you for your entries.
    Ti has agreed to send each of the listed entries a kit( FET + Board ).... which is certainly awesome on their part.
    Thanks TI! 
    @abecedarian -: Water supply usage
    @chicken -------: Resistive touchscreen pattern detector
    @Fred -----------: Laser cutter coolant and temperature monitor
    @greeeg --------: Fitness monitor
    @bobnova -------:Digital tachometer, speedometer, and intelligent shift light.
    @Automate ------:Single-Point Sensing of Whole-Home Water Activity
    @pjkim ------------: Speed Controller
    Please send me your mail addresses at admin  ( the at sign ) 43oh . com
    It would be much appreciated if you could all start project threads with your ideas in the the Projects section.
  8. Like
    abecedarian reacted to bluehash in Scan Interface Applications - Five Members Win A Target Board And An MSP-FET   
    -------------------- Please make sure you are in the list --------------------------------
    I believe I have all entries:
    @@abecedarian -: Water supply usage
    @@chicken -------: Resistive touchscreen pattern detector
    @@Fred -----------: Laser cutter coolant and temperature monitor
    @@greeeg --------: Fitness monitor
    @@bobnova -------:Digital tachometer, speedometer, and intelligent shift light.
    @@Automate ------:Single-Point Sensing of Whole-Home Water Activity
    @@pjkim ------------: Speed Controller
    @@rampadc, your entry was been withdrawn as per your request. 5 will be selected, 5 get goodies. 1 goes to TI's blog. I'm sure the other's will get special mentions.
  9. Like
    abecedarian reacted to L.R.A in WS2812B Matrix   
    ooooo...i think i saw what i did rong. i'll later study this better next week. RobG to the rescue once again
    Btw i have it right now in ping-pong mode with 32 outputs. Still using 3x RAM. For pratical purposes that will probably not be a problem since i can't realy make a matrix that big. I can stop worrying about it for the project but i can improve it for the chalenge 
    1 more video of me having a bit of fun:

  10. Like
    abecedarian reacted to RobG in EduKit BoosterPack   
    Quick demo.
    ADC measures the pot, Timer controls LED's brightness, SPI sends PWM value to shift register.

    Port connections

  11. Like
    abecedarian reacted to RobG in EduKit BoosterPack   
    After couple of years and many ideas, I have finally settled on a design for my experimenter's board. 
    Say hello to EduKit BoosterPack. 

    The EduKit BP comes with 1.8" color LCD and 8 accessory connectors. Each connector provides access to power and 2 or 4 MCU pins and are used to connect accessory boards. Those boards will allow user to perform tests and experiments, and could be used to teach about MCU's. There are also 4 jumpers on the board, which are used to change LCD's connections. LCD can use SPI1 (UCA0) or SPI2 (UCB0,) CS and D/C have also 2 possible connection options.

    Accessory boards can be simple, for example switch, LED, or potentiometer, or can be more complex, like shift register, mic with amp, sensors, MIDI, GPS.

    The EduKit is meant to be used with MSP430G2 LaunchPad (though it could be used with any other LP,) and will come with a library that will allow easy setup and use of LCD. User can write his code and then display results using one of the included functions (text, bar graph, etc.)
  12. Like
    abecedarian reacted to bobnova in Scan Interface Applications - Five Members Win A Target Board And An MSP-FET   
    OK, I have two three different projects that the ESI could be used with, I'm going to list 'em from least ambitious to most ambitious. The more ambitious the less likely I'll actually manage to do it, but who knows.
    Possible project one:  Digital tachometer, speedometer, and intelligent shift light.
    Uses the ESI to read either the ignitor's tach output (one pulse per ignition event, so two per engine revolution) or the vehicle speed sensor's square wave (whichever is more difficult to do with interrupts/timers, unknown at this time) as well as the throttle position sensor.
    Displays engine RPM via either LCD screen or RGBLED bars (or both, plenty of GPIO here), also vehicle speed with LED indicators for common speed limits.
    Based on throttle position, engine RPM and vehicle speed (and gear, calculated via engine RPM and road speed) it will also have a pair of shift lights, one to indicate for downshifting and one to indicate for upshifting.
    Example: On the freeway behind someone at 60MPH in a 65 zone in 5th gear, left lane opens up and you can accelerate. If you give the engine a little bit of gas to accelerate slowly, no lights. Stomp on the gas and the downshift light comes on (perhaps blinking, to indicate multiple gears downward are indicated, as full throttle 60MPH is best done in 3rd gear on this car). If/when you downshift, the light goes out. Let off the throttle to maintain your new speed and the upshift light comes on, as 65MPH in 3rd is lousy for cruising.
    Also indicates upshifts based on engine RPM directly, given a 6750 redline and high throttle angle the upshift light would come on around 6500RPM.
    I may make the MCU learn the rev limits, may not.
    ESI and FRAM are not specifically needed for this project, but using ESI for either tach or road speed would eliminate timing artifacts that would happen if the road speed and tach signals happened simultaneously, something that is guaranteed to happen eventually.
    Possible project two:  Battery-free bicycle telemetry
    Bicycle telemetry, read road speed via multiple magnets attached to one rim and a coil attached nearby.
    Trick is, I want to make said magnet/coil arrangement power the MCU as well as give it a timing signal.
    Both FRAM for its low power consumption and the ESI module for its ability to grab rotational information while the CPU sleeps would be useful.
    Once it has this information, display it on low power LCD screen and save it to FRAM blocks for later downloading to computer, possibly via radio module. No radio for normal operation, radio module also contains a battery. Plug the radio module into the bike and it detects the external power and radio, and contacts a home base unit attached to a computer.
    Possible bonus features include a second sensor on the crankset, and shifting suggestions similar to project #1.
    Alternatively a battery+SD card for data transfer, done more or less the same way.
    I'm not positive that enough power can be generated this way, if not then I'll use a more classic power method, but the ESI and FRAM low power abilities will still be useful. Solar maybe, with a small rechargeable backup battery. Most bike riding is done during daytime after all.
    Possible project number three:  Digital tach/speedo/intelligent shift light, with advanced fuel consumption monitoring.
    Same as project #1, but put the ESI on injector monitoring duties (start timer on injector fire leading edge, stop on trailing edge, calculate fuel injected based on time) and calculate instant and average fuel consumption. Display current MPG, average MPG, cruise MPG and town MPG (buttons to switch between display modes are now needed).
    Ideally run some calculations internally with some learning ability, to allow the MCU to suggest cruise speeds/gears for better mileage.
    Also a route mode. Push "start" button, drive to where you're going, push "end". Display tells you both MPG and how much fuel you actually used. This can be used to figure out what the most efficient routes from point A to point B are, as MPG does not tell the whole story (20 miles at 30mpg, is worse than 10 miles at 20mpg, for an extreme, but not unreasonable for direct city vs indirect freeway example).
    #1 is quite doable.
    #2 may have power issues, but is doable as well.
    #3 is further out there, but something that I would like to do and more importantly has a feature that I've not seen anywhere else.
    Will I actually do any of these if I win? I plan to do them anyway. Free parts help, though.
    Are the FR6989 chips necessary? Not really, a FR5969 would work just as well, or a LM4C for the automotive ideas. Considering that I can't find a place to buy fewer than 1000 FR6989 chips, I'll either be getting by with free samples or using a different MCU. Certainly don't have $4500 to throw down on 1k FR6989s, that'd be overkill even for me.
    Will I blog/log about the project(s)? Definitely.
  13. Like
    abecedarian reacted to bobnova in Hercules engine control   
    I'd not seen this till just now. Very interesting project, and one I'd contemplated for one of my cars at one point.
    I'm short on time right now, but I'll be keeping an eye on this thread!
  14. Like
    abecedarian reacted to DickB in Electromagnetic pendulum clock   
    This pendulum clock is not only regulated by the pendulum, but it is driven by it.  A hidden magnet in the pendulum swings past a hidden coil and induces a current.  This is detected and then a current pulse is fed into the coil, creating an electromagnet that repels the pendulum to keep it moving.
    Others have designed and built clocks like this, but as far as I know mine is the only one using a microcontroller to fine-tune the pendulum's speed to keep accurate time. 
    The coil's output is filtered and fed into an MSP430 comparator, set on an interrupt to wake the microcontroller up.  The microcontroller delays a bit to let the magnet swing away from the coil some for optimal push, then feeds a variable-length pulse (typically 25 mS) into the coil via an output port connected to a PNP transistor.  If the pulse duration is increased, the pendulum swings farther and slows down.  If decreased, the pendulum speeds up.  The ratchet mechanism used to convert pendulum motion into rotary motion had to be designed to accommodate this variation in pendulum swing angle.  By varying the pulse width, the clock can be sped up or slowed down about 1%.  The pendulum needs to be manually adjusted, by setting the height of the bob, to within this tolerance.  To facilitate that, I use a dual-color LED driven by two output ports.  The LED flashes red if the pendulum is too slow, and green if it is too fast.  It usually takes only a few minutes to adjust the bob.  
    Once the bob is set, the microcontroller can maintain accuracy.  I've implemented a modified PID (proportional - integral - derivative) control system to derive the pulse width and regulate the clock. Accuracy is basically the same as the watch crystal used to drive the timer/counter. 

  15. Like
    abecedarian got a reaction from bobnova in MSP430G2553 on breadboard   
    Just for reference, page 21 of the G2553 datasheet recommends 2.2v-3.6v for programming, and on the same page Figure 1 is a graph reflecting voltage versus processor speeds and minimum required VCC for programming.
  16. Like
    abecedarian got a reaction from bluehash in GCC for MSP430 officially out of beta   
    Notification regarding GCC for MSP430
  17. Like
    abecedarian got a reaction from Smakkemeken in Mobile skin post test   
    But I do have to say that I am having issues with Ajax / scripting hanging in the main PC computer browser (IE9) and not completing / refreshing.
    The panel appears at the top of the browser window with animation suggesting the process is "pending" or being computed, but then the panel disappears and I'm still on the page I was at, no refresh or redirect to an updated page.....
  18. Like
    abecedarian got a reaction from Freiberg in Energia MSP430F5529 RX Baud Rate Limit?   
    You don't need to worry about software serial anything.
    You should be able to use the hardware serial backchannel (Serial.begin(baudrate)) to talk to the PC- no need to move jumpers.
    And use P6.5 (TXD) and P6.4 (RXD) (Serial1.begin(baudrate)) to talk to the camera.
    They both should support at least 115200 baud so 38400 shouldn't cause any problem with Serial1 talking to the camera.
    Obviously with the appropriate Serial.print(); Serial1.print; et cetera.
    So maybe:

    void setup() {   Serial.begin(115200);   Serial1.begin(38400); }
  19. Like
    abecedarian reacted to rampadc in Scan Interface Applications - Five Members Win A Target Board And An MSP-FET   
    These can probably be done cheaper using other microcontrollers but how about:
    1. Absolute positioning servomotors with hobby brushless motors 
    2. Another smart thermostat, the controller unit that came with my house's heater is doesn't handle temperatures in different rooms very well. The right side of the house is always hotter than the left side.
  20. Like
    abecedarian got a reaction from bluehash in Scan Interface Applications - Five Members Win A Target Board And An MSP-FET   
    A waitress walked into a restaurant and with a gasp, exclaimed @@zeke! I'm getting giggles thinking about ordering @@chicken @@Fred @@abecedarian... with a side of @@bluehash browns.
    It was a good thing, apparently, since they were out of @@oPossum.
  21. Like
    abecedarian got a reaction from dizzwold in Bread Board & wishful thinking   
    Maybe a breadboard MFG that has software to help take the BB wiring to final product.
  22. Like
    abecedarian reacted to zeke in Scan Interface Applications - Five Members Win A Target Board And An MSP-FET   
    Don't forget the bluehash browns!
  23. Like
    abecedarian reacted to rockets4kids in Bread Board & wishful thinking   
    Something with good connections at a price that doesn't break the bank.
  24. Like
    abecedarian reacted to chicken in Bread Board & wishful thinking   
    Integrated logic analyzer and basic scope that let's you look at the row-signals via USB connected PC.
  25. Like
    abecedarian reacted to Fred in Scan Interface Applications - Five Members Win A Target Board And An MSP-FET   
    Mine project would be to monitor coolant flow and temperature for my laser cutter. The quickest way to destroy a laser is to run it without the coolant flowing and overheat the tube. Unfortunately the cheap Chinese 40W CO2 lasers you get on eBay have and entirely separate water pump that you have to remember to switch on manually. Forgetting to switch it on (or if it gets blocked / too hot) and your tube is quickly fried. I know this is well within the capabilities of a simpler MSP430 just counting pulses from a hall effect sensor, but the ESI sounds perfect for the job and would leave the rest of the FR6989 to get on with more interesting stuff - pulsed laser firing or working as a DSP to control the laser (for engraving, etc.).
    [Edited for a bit more detail]
    The ESI would be used for it's primary purpose - "to automatically measure linear or rotational motion with the lowest possible power consumption" - paired up with a simple hall effect liquid flow sensor. It will hardly be stretching the peripheral to it's limit but should cover its basic use. As far as low power goes, it'll be on a mains powered laser so not exactly essential. I'll be monitoring the temperature of the coolant entering and leaving the laser tube. The laser will be disabled if the flow is too low, the exit temperature is too high or the difference between the entry and exit temperatures is too high.
    It'll have an LCD screen to display the temperature and flow. However I've got a cheap SPI one, so I doubt there will be any reason to use the inbuilt LDC_C controller.
    Phase 2 may involve measuring the speed of the two axes from either an encoder (better) or the pulses to the steppers (easier). If you know the speed of movement of the laser head then that allows better control of the laser power. Without this you tend to get a dot at the start of the cut as the laser powers on but isn't moving yet.
  • Create New...