Arduino Temperature Driven Fan

Schema of Arduino controlled two speeds fan with LCD
Schema of Arduino controlled two speeds fan with LCD

This project is about driving a two speed fan with an Arduino, based on the environment’s temperature.

The project has been designed to help automating an existing fire-based heating system. The idea is that the environment will be warmed faster, by driving heated air into the room with a multi speed fan, while the fire is hot and the surrounding environment not yet.

I wanted to make it a little more interesting by adding a LCD display to show temperature, humidity and fan status, and four buttons to increase and decrease the two temperature values that drive the fan speeds.

Arduino Prototype of Temperature Driven Fan
Arduino Prototype of Temperature Driven Fan

When the temperature is below the lowest temperature threshold, the fan will be running at full speed. With temperatures between the lowest and the highest threshold the fan will be running at half speed and with temperatures above the highest threshold the fan will be off.

This project demonstrates the use of an Arduino (or compatible) micro controller with a temperature and humidity sensor to drive outputs, it demonstrates the usage of a LCD display, push buttons and EEPROM memory storage.

Read moreArduino Temperature Driven Fan

How to drive a small motor at different speeds using an Arduino

Control motor speed with Arduino
Control DC motor’s speed using Arduino

For one of my projects I needed to drive a small motor at different speeds, so I gave this a go by reading and learning more about what is required.

We can achieve that with an Arduino microcontroller by using PWM signals. For this project I am using an Arduino Mini clone, and decided to drive the motor with a N-Channel MOSFET (voltage controlled transistors), activated by a PWM signal.

PWM Duty Cycle
PWM Duty Cycle – Source Wikipedia

Keeping the frequency of the signal constant, and varying the width of the “on” time vs the width of the “off” time (changing the duty cycle), will make the motor spin at different speeds.

The signal values that Arduino expects for the duty cycle is from 0 to 255 and it can be set by using the function analogWrite(pin, value). By providing a different duty cycle value to our Arduino pin (in my case PWM pin number 5), the motor will spin at different speed.

Read moreHow to drive a small motor at different speeds using an Arduino

Arduino and SugarCRM 7 – Do we have un-handled support tickets?

Following up on my previous post about connecting an Arduino to internet with an Ethernet module, I wanted to build a quick solution to notify the support team about un-handled customer issues on the CRM system.

Arduino Sugar7 Case counter
Arduino Sugar7 Case counter

The objective is to connect via the REST API to SugarCRM and give an immediate feedback to the team using an Arduino. The output can be anything; from an awesome smoke machine, to a rotating light, a small set of LEDs, a LCD display, an audio alarm, whatever really. In this specific case it will be a set of 5 LED’s and a buzzer.

This practical example shows how to bring together Arduino micro-controllers, basic electronic skills and software web technologies. The result creates a physical device that gives real time feedback for software users about something that needs immediate attention.

Read moreArduino and SugarCRM 7 – Do we have un-handled support tickets?

How to get an Arduino clone and connect it to the internet for less than $8

Recently I wanted to start using Arduino embedded micro controllers, to refresh and improve my knowledge of electronics and telecommunications, the subject I studied back in the days at my beloved high school (Arturo Malignani in Udine, Italy).

On this post we will see how to connect an Arduino to the internet (and moving towards the “internet of things”) by using cheap components bought in eBay for less than $8!

Read moreHow to get an Arduino clone and connect it to the internet for less than $8

I discovered the fascinating world of hydroponics!

A couple of months ago, I was watching random YouTube videos and I found myself discovering what hydroponics is.

Since that moment, I was totally in love. I have been growing quite successfully small plants (and some not so small ones, like tomatoes) in my Sydney apartment’s balcony. I was definitely ready for my next challenge!

In just few minutes I got into even more “troubles” when I discovered aquaponics… I guess that would be the natural evolution of hydroponics!

It was so fascinating watching videos of people building those self-sustaining ecosystems, integrating those with techie stuff… and I had to give it a try!

Read moreI discovered the fascinating world of hydroponics!

California Trip – SugarCON 2012 – InsightfulCRM MVP 2011

In April I went to San Francisco to attend SugarCON 2012, representing InsightfulCRM. It was actually my first time in the United States!

InsightfulCRM is currently part of the SugarCRM Partner Advisory Board, formed by 12 partners worldwide.

The aim of the PAB is to communicate to SugarCRM executives feedback and guidance from the partner community (currently there are over 400 SugarCRM partners!).

It is awesome for us to be part of the Board!

Read moreCalifornia Trip – SugarCON 2012 – InsightfulCRM MVP 2011