Wireless Sensor Battery Life 3+ Years On

I last blogged about this in December 2013 when the second version of my ATmega328 & DS18B20 based temperature sensor, installed on 29 December 2011, had just reached the 2 year mark on the original set of batteries. That’s pretty good going and I’d have been happy with that but how long would it last until those Energizer batteries […]

Wireless Sensor Battery Life 2 Years On

Back in November 2011 when I made my first ATmega328 based wireless temperature sensor node I did a rough calculation estimating that it would last 2 years or more on a couple of AA batteries. That first node was decommissioned after a few months but the second version, also based on an ATmega328 is still […]

Tiny328 PCB Give Away

Zara from Germany has been in contact to say he has had some of my Tiny328 wireless Arduino boards made and has some spare PCBs that he would like to give away so if you could find a use for a small wireless Arduino compatible or two and can handle a bit of SMD soldering then […]

Tiny328 – A mini wireless Arduino clone

So here is the reason for the last couple of blog posts. This is my first venture into designing an SMT board and apart from the practice run I did with some breakout boards it is the first time I’ve attempted to solder anything as small as a TQFP package or the tiny 0603 passives (1.6 […]

DIY Vacuum Pick Up Tool for SMT Components

To make fast placement of small SMT components easier I wanted a vacuum pick up tool. I bought one of these basic manual ones for £1.72 and it works OK for the money but as it doesn’t have a continuous vacuum it can unexpectedly drop the component if you aren’t careful. Something better was required. […]

Reflow soldering with a domestic hot plate

I’ve been working on some all SMD PCB designs that include TQFP chips recently and although I’ve hand soldered a few SMD capacitors and resistors before I’ve never soldered any SMT ICs so I thought I should get some practice in. I know people say you can solder even TQFP chips by hand but I […]

Experimenting with the nRF24L01+ 2.4GHz radios

I thought it was about time I did a post on the testing I did with the nRF24L01+. This low cost transceiver IC from Nordic Semiconductor works in the 2.4GHz ISM band and you can find boards based on this chip very cheaply indeed, I picked a pair up on ebay for 2.89 USD including […]

OSWIN Gateway with RFM12B, SRF and OOK Support

So after getting an SRF based TinyTX and an OOK based one running I thought I should update the gateway code for my OSWIN gateway to support both types of sensors as well as the RFM12B. To receive the SRF node I’m using a Ciseco XRF in the Xbee socket and the OOK receiver is plugged in […]

Using a cheap OOK radio with the TinyTX

Going the opposite way to the last post this is a version of the TinyTX wireless sensor node using a very cheap radio setup. I first experimented with this 433MHz OOK/ASK radio pair a few years ago with an ATmega328 and the VirtualWire library but I never did much with it beyond a simple demo and […]

Using the Ciseco SRF with the TinyTX

I’ve been meaning to get round to this for a while. I bought one of Ciseco’s SRF transceivers when they first came out in October last year but didn’t get round to trying it until a couple of months ago when there were rumours of the RFM12B being discontinued and while that isn’t the case […]