Programmable-Air is an Arduino Nano Powered Pneumatics Kit (Crowdfunding)

Programmable-Air Arduino Nano Pneumatics Kit

Programmable-Air is a hardware toolkit that allows you to inflate and deflate objects. Powered by an Arduino Nano board, the kit comes with high pressure and vacuum pumps, valves, and a pressure sensor that enables users to experiement and learn about pneumatics and inflatables. Some of the potential applications include vacuum pick and place machines,  soft robots able to walk, soft robotics hands, using a syringe as a linear actuator, inflatable bras, arts projects and more. Programmable-Air specifications: MCU Board – Arduino Nano baord nased on Microchip ATMega328P microcontroller Pneumatics – Full channel control, i.e. high pressure through atmospheric pressure to vacuum output in the same tube. Max pressure – 0.5 atmosphere (7.5 PSI / 50 kPa) Min Pressure – -0.5 atmosphere (-7.5 PSI / -50 kPa) Flow rate: 2 liters per minute per motor Expansion Grove I²C connector to easily add sensors (Not shown in prototype photo above) Expandable for adding valves/sensors Power Supply – 12 V/1.2 A from …

Raspberry Pi based Hyper Keyboard Pi & hgTerm Handheld PCs, and RasPi Arcade Stick

hgterm DIY Raspberry Pi Handheld Computer

There are so many products and projects based on Raspberry Pi that it’s difficult to keep track, and many are often not that interesting, not because they are not useful, but instead because it just feels we’ve seen those before. But this week I’ve come accross three projects that looks to be newsworthy including two handheld computers with a 4″ display, and one retro-gaming console with standard arcade buttons and controls similar to what is found in Pandora’s Box/Key 5S. hgTerm DIY Raspberry Pi  Handheld Computer hgterm is a portable computer based on a stripped down Raspberry Pi 3 where the Ethernet port, HDMI port, and most of the USB ports have been removed. It features a 4″ touchscreen display, a Bluetooth keyboard all housed in a 3D printed case. It’s not actually a product that you can buy (yet), but a project made by Igor Brkić which you can reproduce by following the introduction on his website. The short …

Atomic Pi SBC is back with pre-orders on Amazon and Ameridroid

Atomic Pi single board board is probably the SBC with the best performance / value ratio on the market, so when we reported that Atomic Pi was available worldwide last month the 6,000 pieces available quickly ran out of stock. Many people suspect it was a limited product run from a previous project, and indeed Atomic Pi is most likely AAEON MF-001 board that was designed for Kuri robot designed for the now-defunct Mayfield Robotics. But we have some good news as Atomic Pi SBC does not appear to be a one-off sales getting rid of stock as it’s now back for pre-order on Amazon US and Ameridroid with shipping scheduled for the end of May. I won’t go through the whole specifications again but with an Intel Atom x5-Z8350 quad core processor, 2GB RAM, and 16GB flash, Atomic Pi board has hardware far more powerful than the similarly priced Raspberry Pi. The company provides Ubuntu and Debian images for …

BB-400 Neuron Edge Dual Ethernet Industrial Controller Combines Raspberry Pi CM3+ and Arduino MCU

bb-400 neuron edge industrial controller

While the Raspberry Pi boards are mostly promoted as tools to teach STEM to kids and adults alike, they have found their way in a fair amount of industrial products, including ModBerry M500 industrial computer, Janz Tec emPC-A/RPI3 industrial embedded controller,  and Kunbus RevolutionPi RevPi Core among others. There’s yet another option with Brainboxes BB-400 Neuron Edge industrial controller that was announced last year with Raspberry Pi Compute Module 3, but recently got an upgrade to Raspberry Pi Compute Module 3+. The controller features two Ethernet ports and also includes an Arduino compatible microcontroller to control the system’s eight configurable digital inputs and outputs. BB-400 Neuron Edge industrial controller specifications: SoM – Raspberry Pi Compute Module 3+ with Broadcom BCM2837B0  quad-core , Cortex-A53 processor @ 1.2GHz, 1 GB LPDDR2, 32GB eMMC Flash storage MCU – Unnamed Microchip Atmel Arduino compatible microcontroller Connectivity Ethernet Uplink Port – 1x RJ45 jack, 10/100Mbps autosensing, crossover autosensing (Auto MDIX) Ethernet LAN Port – 1x …

Low Power TinyPICO ESP32 Board Ships with Micropython (Crowdfunding)

TinyPICO ESP32 Micropython

There are so many ESP32 boards available now, so why bother with another ones. Some of the key selling points of TinyPICO are that it is really small at 32 x 18 mm, it’s easy to use out of the box with MicroPython firmware pre-loaded, and supports LiPo batteries with an optimized power path for low-power battery usage. The developer, named Unexpected Maker, also provides various shields for TinyPICO adding a display, sensors, an audio amplifier, an RTC, Grove headers, and more. TinyPICO board specifications: System-in-Package – Espressif Systems ESP32-PICO-D4 SiP with ESP32 dual-core processor operating at 240 MHz, 4 MB SPI flash External System Memory – 4 MB PSRAM Connectivity – 2.4 GHz WiFi 4 802.11b/g/n, Bluetooth 4.2 LE, 3D antenna Expansion – 14x GPIO broken out to standard pitch headers Debugging / Programming – USB + serial/UART for programming Misc – Power (red) & charge (orange) LED’s, APA102 RGB LED Power Supply 5V via micro USB port 700 …

Split Home Energy Meter Combines ESP32 with Microchip ATM90E32 IC (Crowdfunding)

Split Home Energy Meter

It’s always useful to monitor the electricity consumption of your house, as you can easily and quickly find out whether an appliance is suddenly consuming a large amount of electricity before finding out from your next utility bill. It can also help remotely monitoring if an appliance has stopped working and fix it as soon as possible, for example an electric pipe heater making sure your pipe do not freeze in a holiday home. In many cases, a qualified electrician needs to be involved for the installation of whole home energy meters both for safety and insurance matters. We’ve seen in the past energy meters fit easily into a circuit breaker box but they may not be suitable for all setups. I’ve previously reviewed an inexpensive digital clamp meter that you just need to clip on one of the wire connected to your home without having to mess with dangerous voltage and current, nor worrying about UL or TUV certifications. …

Grove AI HAT Helps Raspberry Pi Run Edge Computing Workloads

Grove AI HAT

Last year we wrote about Kendryte K210 dual core RISC-V processor  specifically designed for for machine vision and machine hearing as well as the corresponding Kendryte KD233 which enables inference at the edge, e.g. tasks such as face recognition or object detection. Latter on we found the processor in Sipeed M1 module which went for as low as $5 in a crowdfunding campaign, and was fitted to some low cost boards now selling for $12.90 on Seeed Studio. The latter company has now designed Grove AI HAT that aims to assist Raspberry Pi in running the edge computing workloads previously described, as exposes 6 Grove interfaces to extend functionality with some of the Grove add-on modules. Grove AI HAT specifications: AI Module – Sipeed “MAIX” M1 with Kendryte K210 dual core RISC-V processor @ 600 MHz, KPU Convolutional Neural Network (CNN) hardware accelerator, APU audio hardware accelerator, 8 MB general purpose SRAM including 5.9MB usable as AI SRAM memory Camera …

Seeed Studio W600 Certified WiFi Module to Support Arduino, Micropython

W600 Certified WiFi Module

Last year, Seeed Studio introduced Air602 WiFi module, a competitor to ESP8266 based on Winner Micro W600 Arm Cortex-M3 microcontroller and selling for $1.90. The module was clearly optimized for cost and size since it offered only a few I/Os, and there was absolutely no mention about FCC or CE certifications. The company has now launched another W600 module, slightly larger to expose more I/Os, and pre-certified to comply with FCC and CE requirements. W600 certified WiFi module is offered standalone, or fitted to “Grove – W600” module for easy connection to Arduino boards. W600 Module Specifications: WiSoC – Winner Micro W600 Arm Cortex-M3 microcontroller with 1MB Flash, RF Transceiver, CMOS PA, BaseBand WiFi Connectivity – 802.11 b/g/n up to 150 Mbps Frequency – 2.4~2.4835 GHz Features – Wi-Fi WMM, WMM-PS, WPA/WPA2, WPS Protocols – TCP, UDP, ICMP, DHCP, DNS, HTTP Access Point and Station modes PCB antenna Expansion – 25x castellated holes with 2x UART, 2x SPI, up to …