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Arduino Microcontrollers

Solar-powered Hydroponics Project

My Arduino Projects

The first of my Arduino projects worth writing about is a solar-powered hydroponics rain tower is employing an Arduino Uno microcontroller.

The solar panel charges a 12-volt battery bank, which in turn maintains power for the 12-volt nutrient pump and the Arduino controller cabinet. The Arduino microcontroller is programmed to control the pump on and off, for varying intervals of time, based upon the time of day. The Arduino also datalogs the various pump events, battery voltage and temperature/humidity to an SD card. The time is maintained by a shield (circuit board) that I built around a DS1307 real time clock integrated circuit.

The nutrient pump has a decent-sized current draw, so it is controlled by one of the two relays seen in the picture below. The second relay will be used to control a second pump, inside a deep water culture 5 gallon bucket nurturing two varieties of lettuce, also at intervals controlled by the Ardino, once I acquire a second solar panel.

Arduino hydroponics cabinet with various system boards
Arduino Controlled Hydroponics Rain Tower

The rain tower, as originally setup. It has been modified slightly since this picture was taken.

Arduino Boards

Arduino Boards

Arduino-brand Uno - My first Arduino hardware was the Arduino Uno R3 Board, purchased from Amazon.com, along with the book, Programming Arduino Getting Started with Sketches by Simon Monk. Delivery of these two items from Amazon was hyper-fast, even considering that I went with the free delivery. Mid-February, 2013.

The Uno was part of a bundle, by Newsite, sold through Amazon. It is an authentic Arduino board. The bundle included: Arduino-brand Uno R3, Breadboard, Holder, Jumper Wires, USB Cable and 9V Battery Connector

Arduino Kits

Arduino Kits

The ARDX Starter Kit for Arduino, Level 1 Entry Level, by Seeed Studio, is a great starting point. These can be purchased from Radio Shack, as well as from Amazon.com. It provides a great assortment of parts, components, wires of various lengths, harnesses, leds, a stepper motor, breadboard, plexiglass substrate to mount an Arduino board and the breadboard onto, a 9-volt battery clip, light sensor, buzzer, pushbuttons and much more. In addition to these components, you also receive a small poster of various projects that you can create, as well as small cards, the size of the breadboard to show the method of component connections.

The enclosed booklet provides clear instructions on installing the Arduino software onto your computer system, a decent Arduino programming primer, a basic electronics primer, the code for the 13 projects described in this kit, as well as links to the code online, so you do not have to type everything in.

Arduino Kits

Arduino Books

There are many Arduino programming and kit resources available to help learn how to use the Arduino-series of microprocessors. The Arduino Cookbook is a very good resource. You can purchase it from various sources, including Radio Shack, Amazon.com and through O′Reilly Books. The option that I chose was through O′Reilly Books, as I found that to be the least expensive, as well as I like receiving books as eBooks, which can be read on any of my devices, Kindle, Nook Color, Nexus 7 or a computer. The eBooks that O′Reilly offers are DRM-free, and you have unlimited downloads through your account. The eBooks are available as DAISY, ePub, Mobi and PDF.

You can save money if you choose to purchase from O′Reilly Books by using a Coupon Code that you can find on www.RetailMeNot.com. In late April 2013, I used the DSUG2 coupon code (50% discount on eBooks) to purchase the $35.99 eBook Arduibno Cookbook, for half of that price, and was able to download the various electronic versions of that book instantly.

Arduino Shields

Arduino Shields

LinkSprite SD Card Shield - One of the first shields that I have purchased was the LinkSprite SD Card Shield. I bought it on eBay, very inexpensively, but it took 34 days to arrive here in New Hampshire, from China. The board is well-made, with nice clean solder joints. This shield is version 1.0b.

AT24C32 Real Time Clock Module - Another shield from China. This one I intend on using to provide date and timestamp information into a text file, in comma-delimited format, for my hydroponics project and my solar panel charging station project (arrived late April 2013. I need to solder some header strip to this board, then I will be checking it out. If this works as expected, then I will buy several more of them. I will be using this RTC module in my Solar-powered Hydroponics project, in my Orchid Case project and in my Solar Panel Monitoring project.

The AT24C32 RTC Shield was a dud, it arrived from China DOA, and when I tried to remove the lithium battery, the clip snapped right off. El cheapo!

So, I resorted to building my own shields, using parts from Digikey and prototyping shields, bought from the local Radio Shack.

DS1307 RTC Homemade Arduino Shield


My Homebrew RTC Shield (I actually made 5 of these, foreseeing that they would be handy for data logging)

Arduino PH Shield by Dormant Labs - I got tired of bidding on these shields on eBay, then waiting, and losing the bid. So, what I did was to zoom in to view the silkscreening on the board, then Googled the manufacturer, which brought me to http://tindie.com/shops/rezahussain/arduino-ph-shield-by-dormant-labs/ where I was able to buy it immediately, and at a price comparable to what the bids have been going up to on eBay. My plans for this shield is to monitor (and log) ph values of the nutrient reservoir, in my hydroponics project (arrived mid-April 2013).

Arduino Sensors

Arduino Sensors

Virtuabotix-brand Temperature & Humidity DHT11 Sensor Module - The DHT11 was the first sensor that I bought, two of them, actually. I got sort of bored with not having an input device, so I chose to go with this for my first imput device. Late-March, 2013.

2013-04-09 - Finally took some time to pop this into the breadboard and play with the sensor. It's accuracy seems to match my Fluke-brand infrared thermnometer right to one-tenth of one degree (Farenheit). The temperature and humidity data was streamed at one second intervals to the serial monitor. Once I familarize myself with the LCD shield, I will stream the data to it.

Arduino Displays

Arduino Displays

LCD Module for Arduino 20 x 4, White on Blue - sold through Amazon, by Pandora's Secret. Arrival Late-March, 2013. I haven't done anything with this display yet. Product specs are here. A Project Tutorial is here.

SainSmartTM 3.2" TFT LCD Display+Touch Panel+PCB adapter SD Slot for Arduino 2560 - Arrival Late-March, 2013. I haven't done anything with this display yet.


Arduino News

Bing: arduino

Bing: arduino

Search results

Please be sure to bookmark and revisit this webpage. The newsfeed items below are designed to update automatically and should always be displaying the latest news on this subject.


11/14/2017 03:06 PM
Arduino - Home
Arduino is an open-source electronics platform based on easy-to-use hardware and software. It's intended for anyone making interactive projects.
11/11/2017 11:02 PM
What is an Arduino? - learn.sparkfun.com
Introduction. Arduino is an open-source platform used for building electronics projects. Arduino consists of both a physical programmable circuit board (often ...
11/14/2017 05:14 PM
Arduino - Wikipedia
Arduino is an open source computer hardware and software company, project, and user community that designs and manufactures single-board microcontrollers and ...
11/14/2017 08:18 AM
Arduino : Adafruit Industries, Unique & fun DIY electronics ...
Adafruit Industries, Unique & fun DIY electronics and kits : Arduino - Tools Gift Certificates Arduino Cables Sensors LEDs Books Breakout Boards Power EL Wire/Tape ...
11/13/2017 06:56 PM
Arduino (@arduino) | Twitter
Using @arduino create you can run your Arduino sketches on x86 linux boards, all you need is a browser and an internet connection. You can include OpenCV + MKL for ...
11/14/2017 04:36 AM
Amazon.com: arduino
Product Features 100 percent compatible with the official version, for Arduino uno R3
11/14/2017 02:41 AM
arduino | eBay
Find great deals on eBay for arduino and arduino uno. Shop with confidence.
11/24/2009 06:58 PM
Arduino Uno R3 Microcontroller A000066 - amazon.com
Buy Arduino Uno R3 Microcontroller A000066: Computer Components - Amazon.com FREE DELIVERY possible on eligible purchases
11/14/2017 05:07 PM
Arduino - SparkFun Electronics
In 2003, CU student Nate Seidle blew a power supply in his dorm room and, in lieu of a way to order easy replacements, decided to start his own company.
11/14/2017 12:35 PM
Arduino - Software
Start coding online with the Arduino Web Editor, save your sketches in the cloud, and always have the most up-to-date version of the IDE, including all the ...
11/14/2017 08:35 PM
Arduino Uno Rev3
Arduino Uno is a microcontroller board based on the ATmega328P ( datasheet ).
08/05/2014 07:57 PM
Arduino Buying Guide - SparkFun Electronics
Arduino Buying Guide. Let’s face it, there are a lot of different Arduino boards out there. How do you decide which one you need for your project?
11/14/2017 07:20 AM
Adafruit Industries, Unique & fun DIY electronics and kits
Adafruit Industries, Unique & fun DIY electronics and kits : - Tools Gift Certificates Arduino Cables Sensors LEDs Books Breakout Boards Power EL Wire/Tape/Panel ...
09/21/2017 06:33 AM
Arduino Projects - Instructables Projects
The Arduino micrcontroller has a nearly limitless array of innovative applications for everything from robotics and lighting to games and gardening! It's a fun ...
11/13/2017 01:12 PM
Arduino | Arduino Microcontroller - Maker Shed
Arduino is a simple microcontroller board and open source development environment that allows you to make computers that drive both functional and creative proj
10/31/2016 12:12 AM
Free Online Arduino Class - Instructables.com
This class will introduce you to the Arduino world. You'll learn the basics, build your first project, and so much more. Each lesson builds on your skills,...
11/18/2017 12:49 AM
Arduino Create
Arduino Create simplifies building a project as a whole, without having to switch between many different tools to manage all the aspects of whatever you are making.
10/20/2014 03:28 PM
IMU: Get started with Arduino and the MPU 6050 Sensor!
This tutorial will show you how to interface Arduino with the best available IMU sensor, MPU 6050 and also to generate a 3D model using Arduino MPU 6050.
11/14/2017 06:59 AM
Arduino Blog
As outlined in this Circuit Digest write-up, with the right hardware, you can now control your computer using hand gestures. While interesting, this kind of ...
11/11/2017 02:23 AM
Arduino Profile
Access your personal Arduino information on your profile. Edit your credentials, Forum setting, and check your Store orders.
11/14/2017 06:37 AM
Arduino Reference
The Arduino programming language Reference, organized into Functions, Variable and Constant, and Structure keywords.
11/14/2017 09:32 PM
Make: | Arduino Projects, How-Tos and More
The latest ideas, techniques and tools for building with Arduino, a microcontroller and open source development environment popular for DIY electronics projects.
11/14/2017 01:40 PM
Arduino Forum - Index
Suggestions for the Arduino Project. What do you think should be improved, features for the hard/software, bugs you found
11/12/2017 01:25 AM
Arduino Playground - HomePage
The Arduino Playground. Welcome to the Arduino Playground, a wiki where all the users of Arduino can contribute and benefit from their collective research.
11/13/2017 05:20 AM
Arduino Boards | Authorized Arduino Distributor | Mouser
Arduino distributor Mouser Electronics is stocking Arduino boards & tools. Arduino is an open-source electronics prototyping platform.
11/12/2017 05:02 PM
Arduino Distributor | DigiKey Electronics
Arduino is an open-source electronics prototyping platform based on flexible, easy-to-use hardware and software.
11/14/2017 09:39 PM
Arduino Tutorial - Adafruit Learning System
Did you know that the Arduino IDE can be used to program the micro:bit? Now you have yet another way to use this cool board! Learn how to set up Arduino to program ...
11/14/2017 05:14 PM
Arduino - YouTube
The Arduino MKR1000 is a powerful board that combines the functionality of the Zero and the Wi-Fi Shield. It is the ideal solution for makers wanting to design IoT ...
11/12/2017 11:08 PM
Hackster.io - The community dedicated to learning hardware.
Arduino is an open-source electronics prototyping platform based on flexible, easy-to-use hardware and software.
11/09/2017 10:14 PM
Arduino - Free Shipping - DX
Arduino (1138) Promotion Products. Related Searches: arduino uno, arduino kit, breadboard, arduino mega, servo. Price: All; $1~$31; $31~$62; $62~$92; $92~$123;


About this Webpage

A set of webpages that I have prepared relative to using the Arduino family of microcontrollers as a means of furthering my knowledge of C+ computer programming.

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