Hobby Projects - Insulation tester, LED Circuits, Meters.

Friday, October 06, 2017

Vicacopter – Open Flight Robotics

Source code and many notes used in Vicacopter, the 1st English language source code for a fully functional helicopter autopilot.

Vicacopter - Open Flight Robotics

Vicacopter uses a ground computer for flight control. An 8 bit airborne microcontroller handles rate damping, PWM, & sensor capturing. The ground computer handles navigation & provides a simple instrument panel. This was the cheapest & most flexible way to fly. The system can be converted to a completely airborne autopilot very simply.

Vicacopter - Open Flight Robotics

Some Features
  • Automated landing & takeoff
  • Sonar position sensing for indoor flight
  • GPS position sensing for outdoor flight
  • Ground station instrument panel
  • Untethered communication from pilot to ground station
  • Curved or linear paths

The Tri-Roter one used 3 gyros for short term rotation sensing, 2 accelerometers for long term tilt sensing, 3 magnetometers for long term heading sensing, a high quality GPS module for horizontal position, a barometer for altitude sensing. A 3rd accelerometer was too sensitive to vibration & altitude changes to be any good. Because of the long term sensors & the very stable gyros, the orientation was always pretty accurate & didn't drift.

Thursday, October 05, 2017

RobotProg - Learn Bot Programming

Program a virtual robot with a flowchart : first you draw the flowchart, then you run the program and watch the robot executing your program. You do not have to own a Robot to start with.

RobotProg - Learn Bot Programming

With RobotProg you can learn programming bases by means of gradual levels. At the last level, you may program several robots playing games on the same ground.

RobotProg - Learn Bot Programming

See also Solve Elec

Draw and analyze electrical circuits functioning in direct or alternating current. Get literal formulas and values for current intensities and voltages defined in the circuit. Verify circuit related equations.


"Not all bots like to be told what to do, Then these are Instructed Bots. Some Bots later Evolve or Mutate into Fuzzy Bots. Then they will take their own Decisions." - delabs

Saturday, September 09, 2017

Learn thru Hobby Electronics

hobby-electronics.info information site electronics hobby. For beginners or learners taking an electronics course! would be a fun way to start. Electronics Projects page has some projects with a PCB layout for easy building too.

Learn thru Hobby Electronics

Learn thru Hobby Electronics

The Course - "We start with a few lessons about voltage, current en resistance. Next, we'll discuss power dissipation and capacitors, diodes and transistors. We now have enough knowlegdge to build a simple power supply. And after a few lessons about differential amplifiers and operational amplifiers, we are even able to design and build a professional lab power supply."

Tuesday, September 05, 2017

Thermostat circuits - Craig Forsythe

The circuits below are variations on basic thermostat designs that can be used to control either heating or cooling devices.

Potential applications include such diverse jobs as opening flaps or controlling heat in greenhouses, powering automatic fans that only cut in when needed,

Thermostat circuits - Craig Forsythe

Thermostat circuits - Craig Forsythe

The 311 is a purpose-built comparator chip (these circuits work by comparing a set voltage with a changing one produced by the inversely temperature-sensitive thermistor). For this application, however, it's a bit like using a Ferrari to do the work of a wheelbarrow. The 311 is very sensitive and, unless significant feedback is provided, stray electrical noise will tend to make it oscillate (the relay will get jittery). ......

Monday, September 04, 2017

MadLab – Inventive electronic kits

Unique, hands-on electronics workshop for children and adults. In the workshop participants solder electronic components onto specially-designed circuit boards.

MadLab - Inventive electronic kits

MadLab has been made possible through the generous sponsorship and support of the Edinburgh International Science Festival, Zot Engineering and Microchip.

MadLab – Inventive electronic kits

A really useful tool for the budding electronics engineer - a digital frequency meter. New and improved version.
  • input signal range from about 15Hz to 8MHz
  • new feature - bypass switch for low-frequency TTL-level signals from 1Hz
  • internal accuracy +/-1Hz
  • 4 digits of displayed accuracy
  • input conditioning amplifier sensitive to 50mV
MadLab presents an absolute beginner's guide to electronics. Following this short course will lead you from basic ideas about electronics right up to an understanding of how the simple MadLab kits actually work.

Monday, August 21, 2017

KTechLab - Open Source IDE

KTechLab project. KTechLab is a an IDE for microcontrollers and electronics. It supports circuit simulation, program development for microcontrollers and simulating the programmed microcontroller together with its application circuit. Ktechlab was developed by David Saxton.

KTechLab - Open Source IDE

KTechLab - Open Source IDE

Integrated Design Environment (IDE) for electronic and PIC microcontroller circuit design and simulation. Featuring an extensive circuit designer with autorouting and simulation of many common electronic components and logic elements, KTechLab is the idea tool for educational or hobbyist use. You can simulate analog circuits and logical circuits using KTechLab.

You can write programs using Assembly, C (SDCC), or Flow Code - program the microcontroller(PIC) using flowchart. Another option is Microbe a programming language like BASIC.

KTechLab supports a wide range of Open Source PIC programmers, enabling finalised PIC programs to be quickly and easily transfered to a real PIC microcontroller.

Wednesday, August 16, 2017

Toy SMPS or an Overkill White LED Driver

Jonathan Westhues site of Intriguing Projects include A Test Instrument for HF/LF RFID and a compiler that starts with a ladder diagram and generates native PIC16 or AVR code.

Toy SMPS or an Overkill White LED Driver

Toy SMPS or an Overkill White LED Driver

I sense the load current and control the duty cycle. The PWM pin on the AVR drives the gate of the FET through a couple of BJTs. Note the absence of any input capacitance; Vin looks terrible but it works. The micro power supply section is isolated with an RC.

delabs Notes

This is a nice way to start, learn uC and Power electronics in one go. It does not matter if it an expensive solution for LED Lighting. It certainly is an excellent Educational Project.
It may also be useful to use Intelligent Systems (uC and Firmware) to monitor and manage LED Arrays and control their brightness and color. Large Arrays can be Interfaced to PC by XBee for Home/Office or Factory Lighting Automation and Energy Consumption Optimization.

Microcontroller Interfacing

uC Real World Interface

uC I/O is Keyboard and LCD when you Build a calculator or a Text/Morse Communicator. When you control a motor it is Drive/Speed and Direction for Motor and Tacho or Opto Counters for Feedback. In both cases you have Input and Output which is Logic or Analog which has to reach the CPU.