Saturday, December 31, 2016

Look like we are at the end of very eventful year 2016. Lots of twists and turns on the way to reach. Wish you a Very happy new year 2017!

We went through lots of projects and lets have a look at what we have through one by one.

1. RF Udaan

This was project to create a programmable RF platform with LoRa and generic ISM band RF communications. This project has been successful to some extend but still has a learning journey ahead. The project suffered several setbacks due to problems due to the selection of the DRF1276G as a target platform for LoRa. However the ISM band radio using RFM69HW has been quite a success.
Left side of the RFM69HW connected to RF-Udaan board with Pro Mini and DHT22

More closeup view of the Pro Mini board

 These are the RFM69HW board with the base RF-Udaan project board. They work great with simple Wire antenna and have good sensitivity of around -98dB considering the adhoc soldering and wire antenna.

DRF1276G Module connected to RF Udaan board

Little closer look at the DRF1276G
These are the pictures with the DRF1276G module and a Right angle 2dBi rubber duct antenna. They don't perform as good. Possibly due to the RF driver being used or some issues with the hardware. Investigation is still progress.

We have already sent out the next version of this board called RF-Udaan2 as many of you might have guessed. We are migrating the LoRa setup to Microchip's RN2483 module without any further delay.
Also we would be evaluating the RFM95 which many people have recommended. We also have a special surprise design where in the RFM69HW board will become intelligent and will have ESP8266EX connection capability. But that towards 2017, keep a watch.


2. RFM69HW Senor Node


This has now merged into the RF Udaan project as both have similar radio. Just so that you remember by protos:
First Prototype for the RF Sensor Node

Before RF Udaan boards the famous Spider soldering
Presently doing RF Power to battery life evaluation tests. In fact I published some of my initial code for a Low Power execution in a Gist: https://gist.github.com/boseji/d4e031aa7ec14b498a7a6a1efedf6d55

This gives an Arduino Sketch where we can check low power consumption of the ATmega328P chip. Though there is problem that it can't be programmed without a ISP programmer. So I converted one of my Arduino to an ArduinoISP and then programed the Pro Mini board from that. But after getting stuck multiple times I used my old trusted Atmel MKII programmer.
So still a working progress. I will update some of my findings that might surprise you. Watchdog in Atmel is great and the Power Shutdown though not very feature rich like the MSP430 is still good. No wonder the ATmega328P is called a Pico-Power chip.

The measure currents are down to 12uA with full memory retention and on-board power hungry LDO on the Pro Min + RF Udaan + RFM69HW board. 

That's a remarkable feet. More on this in the coming posts.

3. Static Site Generator using Golang


Work is progressing on this albeit slower than other projects. Checkout some of my initial examples in the 99_..... directory of the Github repo.

I have now resolved to create a small Thingspeak like service that can be hosted in the local PC or on a simple Raspberry Pi to be able to upload and represent data. Open source web server using golang that can be used to upload data from ESP8266EX. Hope that if you keep checking my play ground repo then you might find some useful pieces of Golang code that you might use for your projects.

4. SIM900 Relay


This project though successful on my side, is still stuck due to non availability of hardware in the location where my friend lives. I have tried to port the library to get it running with the cheap GSM modules but no luck yet. Will be trying to ship some SIM900 boards to solve the problem.


Hope that with renewed spirit in 2017 we would have more projects to discuss and continue where we left off on many others. As always your feedback and support is always welcome.

This is boseji signing out 2016, and see you next time.

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