New project/member

Discussion in 'The Projects Forum' started by forbes-1234, Jan 25, 2013.

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  1. forbes-1234

    Thread Starter New Member

    Jan 25, 2013
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    Hello guy,

    I'm relatively new to electronics and brand new to this forum.
    I have a standard level of electronics knowledge from stuff I have learn't at college, ohms law, kirchoffs law, thevenin's theorem, superposition, ect ect. Basic stuff really.

    However I wish to expand my knowledge and carry out some practical work.

    I have a project that I wish to undertake and would like some direction on where to start or any advice really.

    I wish to creat a circuit that will receive a 0-5v signal and display a modified signal on a 3 seven segment display. The modified signal will be the ((voltage * 2) + 10) for example 2.35v input and 14.7 displayed on the 3 seven segment displays.

    Any help on where I could start or how this could be achieved would be very helpful or if anyone would point me in the direction of any referance materials.

    Thanks,

    - Russ
     
  2. tshuck

    Well-Known Member

    Oct 18, 2012
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    I'd say to start learning microcontrollers. They are digital devices that can be programmed in various languages to perform various tasks. Typical ones are PIC and AVR. If you are going to do electronics professionally, don't bother with the Arduino, it is an entry level 'microcontroller' that abstracts the workings of the microcontroller...
     
  3. mcgyvr

    AAC Fanatic!

    Oct 15, 2009
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    I hope this is for a Wideband O2 sensor.. No point in doing it for a typical narrow band sensor.
     
  4. WBahn

    Moderator

    Mar 31, 2012
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    How you tackle it depends on a number of things, most important being what your point in doing the project in the first place. If you goal is just to end up with a circuit that does what you want (and assuming you don't want to just pay someone to do it for you) then pursuing a microcontroller based solution is a very sound approach. If your main goal is to learn about electronics and digital logic at a pretty low level, then you might want to tackle it using more basic and fundamental blocks. You can find some good help and guidance here for whichever path you choose, but only you can decide which path best matches your goals, though we can help provide information that might be useful in case you don't have a good feel for what your goals really are.
     
  5. forbes-1234

    Thread Starter New Member

    Jan 25, 2013
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    Thanks for your replay guys.

    My main goal is to learn electronics and to create a circuit that can be of use to me as well. Correct it is for a wide and afr sensor and the seven segment displays will eventually be fitted to my car.

    Perhaps I could go at this from both the micro controller approach and the more basic approach, to expand my practical knowledge of electronics and give me an understanding of what is truly going on within the circuit.

    Will it be a case of connecting all seven segment displays leds to the controllers output and writing a program that will give them a voltage dependant on the input?

    Can anyone give me some direction?
     
  6. forbes-1234

    Thread Starter New Member

    Jan 25, 2013
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    Anyone steer me the right way?
     
  7. Salaja

    New Member

    Jan 27, 2013
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    i feel you have two options to achieve this goal.

    micro controller: your 0-5v signal will be fed into an ADC (analogue to digital converter) which is a special pin on the micro controller.

    now, how accurate do you want the output to be? if you want something like 4 significant figures (in decimal), you'll be needing about a 10-bit ADC on the micro. if you buy a micro with only 8-bits, you will still get your result, but it wont have the same precision.

    from there you will have to write a program to measure this voltage, and perform you equation. then, you must write the code to activate the pins for the seven segment display. most micro controllers can drive an LED. each LED circuit will require its own current limiting resistor (so 7 resistors per 7 seg display).

    op-amp solution: use op-amps to perform your *2 and + 10 equation, then feed the voltage into a discrete ADC, and feed its output into a binary to 7 seg display driver (if such a thing even exists), and get it to run the display.
     
  8. forbes-1234

    Thread Starter New Member

    Jan 25, 2013
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    Thanks for your input.

    I think I will go down the microcontroller route as I have never used one before and it will be a good learning curve.
    I will only need the reading to be accurate to 1 decimal place.

    Could you recommend a microcontroller to use or a starter kit?
     
  9. Salaja

    New Member

    Jan 27, 2013
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    unfortunately i can not recommend a micro. in university we used AVR, which i didn't do much of, and I've recently aquired a pickit3 and some PIC's, which i haven't got around to using yet.

    but i can say, that things you need to look at are your number of pins (how many outputs will you need), peripherals (ADC, etc), the operating voltage (i think they are all either 3.3v or 5v. for a 0-5v signal i assume you would want a 5v micro). and no doubt a few other things that i've forgotten.

    i've also used an arduino mega, which isn't an IC like the others, but rather a whole circuit board built around the IC. i think if your just starting, an arduino uno or mega would be ideal. unfortunately, they cost much much more (in the ball park of $50 i think, as opposed to $2 for just an IC), but include programming and compiling software, and the only extra you really need to buy is a USB A-B cable, so it can be plugged into your computer.

    so in conclusion, if you want to learn microcontroller programming in C quickly and easily, get an arduino uno, but if you want to jump right in the deep end and have to deal with a bit of machine code, get a avr or pic or some other micro controller brand (keep in mind you will need a programmer for these, which will cost extra).
     
  10. Wendy

    Moderator

    Mar 24, 2008
    20,766
    2,536
    The owners of All About Circuits has elected not to host discussions of automotive electrical system modifications/enhancements due to safety concerns, the potential of legal ramifications and the possible circumvention of vehicle regulations at the state and federal level.

    This thread is against the AAC forum rules, Chapter 6, as seen here:

    This can be found in our Terms of Service (ToS)

    Automotive modifications of any kind are strictly forbidden. Therefore, this thread will be closed.

    Please try to understand the reasons behind this action, and feel free to browse and use the forums.

    You might find answers to your questions in one of these forums:

    http://forum.allaboutcircuits.com/showthread.php?t=54400

    Another good forum that shares many of the same membership is http://www.electro-tech-online.com/ . Good luck.
     
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