Category Archives: Sensors

What is Raspberry Shake and BOOM?

The Earth below our feet is never still. Although we feel tremors only when they are substantially strong, such as during earthquakes, we can use the highly popular single board computer, the Raspberry Pi or RBPi to monitor what is happening just under us. This tiny seismograph, with an appropriate name of Raspberry Shake, is the smallest one can find. Although small, Raspberry Shake can record earthquakes of all magnitudes, even those no human senses can detect. It is also capable of recording Read more [...]

What are RTUs – Remote Terminal Units?

Nowadays, small computers make up remote terminal units or RTUs and SCADA units. Users program controller algorithms into these units, allowing them to control sensors and actuators. Likewise, they can program algorithms for logic solvers, power factor calculators, flow totalizers, and many more, according to actual requirements in the field. Present RTUs are powerful computers able to solve complex algorithms or mathematical formula describing external functions. Sensing devices or sensors gather Read more [...]

Do It Yourself Blynk Board

Those who have some experience with Do It Yourself (DIY) electronic projects, and are just starting to test the waters in the Internet of Things (IoT), the Blynk Board from SparkFun is an activity filled challenging exercise. Both experienced users as well as beginners will find this fun to set up and learn—the kit comes with more than ten projects. Of course, you can make this board work without the IoT Starter Kit from SparkFun, but then you will have to buy the sensors and other components Read more [...]

Low-Side & Hi-Side Current Sensing

Electronic systems tend to manage their power consumption to reduce the production of heat as waste. This calls for optimizing the system efficiency by effectively distributing power. As the voltage applied to the circuit is usually a constant, engineers monitor power consumption by keeping track of the current drawn by the circuit—power being the mathematical product of the current and voltage fed to the circuit. Current sensing has additional advantages, mainly that of maintaining the health Read more [...]

A Smart Development Board for the Raspberry Pi

The Raspberry Pi or RBPi single board computer when fortified with Cloudio makes a personal IoT computer that users can play with or use for prototyping. Cloudio, the add-on board suitable for the RBPi, offers advanced features such as sensor monitoring and displaying on dashboard, providing custom notifications with image and video, unlimited cloud services, one tap upload for multi-boards, voice assistant capabilities, IFTTT integration, drag and drop programming for Android and iOS, and much more. As Read more [...]

Measuring Very High Currents

High currents, such as 500 Amps and above, are common nowadays. Industries regularly use equipment consuming high currents, and vehicle batteries experience very high currents for a short time during starting. With vehicles increasingly trending towards their electric versions, it is becoming necessary to be able to measure high currents with precision. Increasingly, it is increasingly becoming critical to monitor current consumed accurately for ensuring performance and long-term reliability. Current Read more [...]

Sensor Nodes Based on the Raspberry Pi

Building sensor networks is economical if a microcontroller hosts the sensors. However, sometimes the computational power a microcontroller offers is not adequate. For instance, it may be necessary to convert the data to a different format, print a hard copy of the sensor data, or incorporate the data within an application. What you need is a computer that not only has more processing power, but also allows the use of common applications, affords access to peripherals, and permits the use of scripting Read more [...]

Measuring 16 Temperatures Remotely

In several cases, one cannot access the area where the temperature needs to be monitored. For instance, the temperature inside a kiln may reach a few thousand degrees, which is beyond the tolerance of humans. Environment chambers may need to be completely sealed off when operating, which means monitoring the conditions within has to be remotely accomplished. Simpler cases may also be considered, where the computer logging the temperature is in a central location, whereas the monitored sites are spread Read more [...]

Measuring Air Quality with IoT Sensor

Bosch Sensortec is making an IoT environmental sensor for measuring air quality. The BME680 can measure the indoor air quality, relative humidity, barometric pressure, and ambient air temperature. It has four sensors housed within a single LGA package measuring 3x3x0.95 mm, and both mobile and stationary IoT applications can use the package for use in smart homes, offices, buildings, elder care, sports, and fitness wearables. The BME680 measures the indoor air quality through its internal gas sensor Read more [...]

Sensing Temperature with NTC Thermistors

Temperature sensors using NTC thermistors are built from sintered semiconducting ceramic material. Such materials contain a mixture comprising several metal oxides. The specialty of these materials is they possess charge particles, which allow current to flow through the thermistor, and display large changes in its resistance value even when the change in temperature is rather small. The manufacturing process allows standard NTC thermistors to operate effectively in the temperature range between Read more [...]