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Seeeduino Stalker - Waterproof Solar Kit

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Contents

Introduction

Stalker Kit is a Seeeduino Stalker v2.1 based Wireless Sensor Network node data-logger. Seeeduino Stalker v2.1 is a feature rich Arduino compatible Wireless Sensor Network node. It's modular structure and onboard peripherals like Temperature Sensor, RTC, SDCard interface makes it convenient to log sensor values with accurate time stamp periodically. The Seeeduino Stalker is a candidate for all your tracking, monitoring and control projects.

The Stalker Kit includes all necessary components to work with Seeeduino Stalker v2.0. Stalker Kit can be used outdoors as it comes with a plastic, waterproof enclosure. Hence, you can even put it in the water if you have some special idea. The kit comes with a Solar Panel and a LiPo Battery. They might be used in remote areas like desert or jungle by working just with the solar energy harvested and stored in the LiPo Battery. Click here to buy

Seeeduino Stalker - Waterproof Solar Kit.jpg

Stalker Kit Contents

Component Description Quantity
Seeeduino Stalker v2.1 The Arduino Compatible WSN Node 1
Lithium-ion polymer Battery - 980mAh Capcity Charged from Solar Panel using Stalker V2.1 1
SanDisk microSD™ Card 2GB Logs the sensor values and time-stamp data. 1
Mini USB cable 110cm As programming cable used with UartSBee 1
UartSBee V4 Provides USB-Serial port to program Stalker V2.1 using Arduino IDE 1
6 pin cable Connects UartSBee to Seeduino 1
Seeeduino Stalker v2 enclosure Waterproof plastic case 1
0.5w Solar Panel 55x70 Power Source 1
CR2032 Button Cell 1

Features

  • Since Seeeduino Stalker is designed for use as a Wireless Sensor Network node, it would be incomplete without an accompanying weather-proof enclosure. Keeping that in mind, while redesigning the newer version of Seeeduino Stalker (revision from v1.0 to v2.0) we adjusted the PCB outline and the location of the screws such that it could fit in this enclosure. The enclosure is tough and has a water proof seal. See Seeeduino Stalker v2 enclosure
  • The top lid of the enclosure is kept transparent to mount a solar panel inside it.For more stability, the solar panel is sticked under the top lid of the enclosure as shown:

Stalker kit1.jpg

  • The 980mAh lithium polymer battery can be put into the enclosure under the Seeeduino Stalker. You can fix it by using screws and plastic pillars.

Application Ideas

  • Wireless Sensor Network (using XBee - bought seperately)
  • GPS Logging (using GPSBee - bought seperately)
  • Data Acquisition System capable of communicating with an App running on iPhone/Android Phone/Nokia Phone (using BluetoothBee - bought seperately)
  • RF Remote Control (using RFBee - bought seperately)
  • As a simple standalone Arduino compatible physical computing platform (UartSBee must be bought seperately for programming)


UartSBeeWiFiBeeBluetoothBeeXBeeGPSBeeRFBeeWiFiBeeBluetoothBeeXBeeGPSBeeRFBeeSeeeduino Stalker v2.1UartSBeePhoto of a Seeeduino Stalker v2.1 PCB and the various Bee modules that are compatible with.
The various Bee modules that can be used with Seeeduino Stalker v2.1 (Click on the modules to visit their Wiki pages)


NOTE: Please note that UartSBee cannot be inserted into the Bee Series socket present on Seeeduino Stalker. The UartSBee is intended for interfacing the other Bee modules (shown in the photo above) to a computer and cannot itself be be inserted into the socket meant for these other Bee modules. There is a separate 5 way pinheader present on UartSBee as well as Seeeduino Stalker for interfacing them to each other. This pinheader is composed of: VCC (to supply power to Stalker), TXD, RXD, DTR (for controlling Stalker's Reset signal) & GND.


Usage

Getting Started

If you are new to the "Physical Computing" world and if Seeeduino Stalker v2.1 is the first physical computing platform you want to begin with, then we suggest you to start with Seeeduino.

The following steps will help you assemble the hardware and software resources to get you started with Seeeduino Stalker v2.1

Step 1: Acquiring the Hardware

You will require the following hardware for running your first program.

Seeeduino Stalker V2.1

Seeeduino Stalker v2.1
Buy Here
UartSBee v4.0

UartsBee v4.0
Required for programming
the Seeeduino Stalker.
Buy Here
Mini USB Cable

Mini USB Cable
You would probably have this one lying around,
or if not, buy one here. We would use this
to connect the UartsBee to one of the
USB ports on your computer.
Seeeduino V2.2

1 pin dual-female jumper wire
Required for connecting the UartsBee to Seeeduino Stalker.You might already have few lying around your workspace. If not, you can buy a colourful one here.


Step 2: Installing the drivers and plugging in the hardware

  1. UartSBee is like the multi-purpose Swiss Army knife of the Physical Computing world. There is a very detailed procedure to use UartSBee for both Windows and GNU/Linux users here. In our case it will perform three functions:
    • Allow us to program the Seeeduino Stalker.
    • Allow us to communicate with Seeeduino Stalker.
    • Provide power (from USB power of your computer) to Seeeduino Stalker (including any peripherals connected to it).
  2. The first two functions of UartSBee (programming and communication) are achieved through an Integrated Circuit called FT232RL which is present on it. Before FT232RL can be used for these purposes, its drivers (certain freely available programs from FT232RL's manufacturer) must be installed on your windows/ubuntu based PC. So before proceeding further, download the driver setup file from here and install it on your Windows PC.
  3. UartSBee has an onboard voltage regulator and a switch to allow you to select what voltage (5.0V or 3.3V) you would like to supply to the target circuit board. In our case the target circuit board is Seeeduino Stalker and so you would need to set this slide switch to 5.0 volts
  4. The wiring connection scheme of our hardware is "Computer→(Mini USB Cable)→UartSBee →(Flat Ribbon Cable)→Seeeduino Stalker". The jumper wires must be connected between UartSBee and Seeeduino Stalker before connecting the UartSBee to the Computer. Refer the photos below and make sure the signals line up as shown in the table (Note: The TXD and RXD pins must be cross connected as shown in the table).
  5. Next connect the Mini USB cable from UartSBee to your computer. If you are using a Windows based PC, the "Found New Hardware" balloon will popup and within a few moments the drivers for FT232RL (i.e. UartSBee) will be installed.


Seeeduino Stalker v2.1 <---> UartSBee v3.1 connection
Jumper Wire connections
Seeeduino Stalker       UartSBee
USB5V   ↔   VCC
RXD   ↔   TXD
TXD   ↔   RXD
GND   ↔   GND
DTR   ↔   DTR

Connection Notes

  • Bee series socket - 2*10 pin 2.0mm pitch (which will mate with - one at a time - any of the wireless modules: XBee, BluetoothBee, GPSBee or RFBee.) Communication with these modules are done through UART.
  • Serial interface – To save space and lower costs, USB<->Serial connectivity is not provided by default. You may use the FT232 based UartSBee or other USB to serial adapter boards to do the programming or communicate with the PC.
  • User LED – An LED has been provided onboard for use in your application as desired.
  • I2C Interface: Onboard I2C level shifter IC provides voltage translation between 3.3V and 5V devices. This allows you to connect 5.0 Volt I2 ICs to you microcontroller when its operating on 3.3 Volts.

Programming Examples

  • Download and install the DS3231 library and sketches available in the resources section. DS3231 library includes modified version DateTime class by Jean-Claude Wippler at JeeLabs
  • The demo sketches makes use of the fat16lib Arduino Library for accessing SD Card. Please install FAT16 Library from fat16lib's project page.

Adjust Date/Time


  • Set Arduino board as Arduino Pro or Pro Mini (3.3V, 8MHz) w/ ATmega 328 from Tools-->Board Menu of Arduino IDE.
  • Open adjust.pde example from DS3231 library
  • Set the current date/time using the DateTime Class object dt in the example:
    • DateTime dt(year, month, date, hour, min, sec,week-day(starts from 0 and goes to 6));
    • Ex:- DateTime dt(2011, 11, 10, 15, 18, 0, 5);
  • compile and upload to Seeeduino Stalker v2.1


adjust.pde output


Get Current Date/Time


  • Set Arduino board as Arduino Pro or Pro Mini (3.3V, 8MHz) w/ ATmega 328 from Tools-->Board Menu of Arduino IDE.
  • Open now.pde example from DS3231 library
  • The current date/time is read from DS3231 using RTC.now() function.
    • Ex:- DateTime now = RTC.now();
  • compile and upload to Seeeduino Stalker v2.1


now.pde output


DS3231 Read Temperature


  • Set Arduino board as Arduino Pro or Pro Mini (3.3V, 8MHz) w/ ATmega 328 from Tools-->Board Menu of Arduino IDE.
  • Open temperature.pde example from DS3231 library
  • The current temperature in deg C is read from DS3231 using RTC.getTemperature() function.
  • The temperature register of DS3231 is normally updated only once in 64 Seconds.
  • Hence, a forced conversion has to be initiated using RTC.convertTemperature()
    • Ex:-

   RTC.convertTemperature();             //convert current temperature into registers
   Serial.print(RTC.getTemperature());   //read registers and display the temperature
   Serial.println("deg C");


temperature.pde output


DS3231 Interrupts


This example is a demonstration of interrupt detection from DS3231 INT output. This feature is useful for data-logger functionality where the MCU is put to sleep mode when not in use and DS3231 INT wakes up the CPU periodically. This extends battery power. The complete operation is documented in the code.

  • Solder PD2 and INT pins of INT jumper.
    • This connects the DS3231 interrupt out pin to ATmega328 INT0 pin.
  • Set Arduino board as Arduino Pro or Pro Mini (3.3V, 8MHz) w/ ATmega 328 from Tools-->Board Menu of Arduino IDE.
  • Open interrupts.pde example from DS3231 library
  • compile and upload to Seeeduino Stalker v2.1


interrupts.pde output


Data Logger Examples


The principal application of Seeeduino Stalker v2.1 is data-logging of sensor signal like temperature along with the time-stamp. We have provided 3 sketches along with the DS3231 library demonstrating 3 different implementation. These sketches puts the MCU in sleep mode when not performing data sampling / logging operation. The complete implementation is documented very well in the code. The following section gives an overview :

Data Logger examples hardware setup


  1. StalkerV21_DataLogger_Periodic.pde
    • This sketch logs temperature data periodically to SD card configured by RTC.enableInterrupts(periodicity) function.
    • The periodicity is provided using predefined constants EverySecond or EveryMinute or EveryHour
    • This sketch produces verbose output i.e the various events happening inside MCU are displayed in serial terminal.
  2. StalkerV21_DataLogger_5min.pde
    • This sketch logs temperature data using to SD card configured by RTC.enableInterrupts(h, m, s) function.
    • The periodicity is provided using h, m and s. Once an interrupt is detected, the next interrupt time is updated by advancing the h,m and s value. The DateTime Class comes handy for this.
    • ex:- interruptTime = DateTime(interruptTime.get() + 300); //decide the time for next interrupt
    • This sketch also produces verbose output i.e the various events happening inside MCU are displayed in serial terminal.
  3. StalkerV21_DataLogger_15Sec_NoSerialPort.pde
    • This is similar to previous sketch with different data-log interval. All Serial Port related code is commented to reduce power consumption.
    • There is no significant reduction in power consumption by removing Serial Port related code.


Overview of Data-logger implementation


A note on power consumption

The following screenshot shows the current consumption measurement of Seeeduino Stalker v2.1 @ 3.3V input connected to LIPO_BAT. In actual application LIPO_BAT is connected to a 3.7V LiPo battery. Hence, consider the following measurement with a pinch of salt.

StalkerV21_DataLogger_15Sec_NoSerialPort.pde current consumption @ 3.3V


  • We see active mode peaks every 15 Seconds. In active mode the MCU samples the temperature and stores it into SD card.
  • The current consumption at sleep mode is 95.82 uA @ 3.3V (i.e 316.206 uW power consumption). Please note, that the SD Card VCC is still powered in this demo. To reduce the sleep mode current further, switch off the SD Card using the LDO enable pin by re-configuring the POWER_TF jumper. This might also increase the time taken for SD card to stabilize when VCC is applied.
  • The current consumption at active mode peak is 22.43 mA @ 3.3V (i.e 74.019 mW power consumption)
  • The current consumption at active mode second-peak is 3.64 mA @ 3.3V (i.e 12.012 mW power consumption)
  • The active mode lasts for 400mS or 0.4 Seconds.

Alternative datalogger / SD Card library

Few Seeeduino Stalker users have developed a datalogger functionality for Seeeduino Stalker v1.0. This interesting implementation is mentioned here to highlight a different way of using SD card. Refer to A and B threads at the Arduino Forum.

Arduino-filelogger library used in these is available from Google Code arduino-filelogger project page. These sketches works only with Seeeduino Stalker v1.0. Interested users can port to Seeeduino Stalker v2.1 using the DS3231 library.



Accessories

Besides the many Bee Series modules, SD card reader mini-USB cable, in a capsule are available for use with Stalker Kit:

SD card reading mini-USB cable, in a capsule

microSD Card Reader
(in a capsule)

FAQ

Here is the Stalker Kit FAQ,users can list the Frequently Asked Questions here:

Support

If you have questions or other better design ideas, you can go to our forum or wish to discuss.


Revision History

Revision Descriptions Release Date
Stalker Kit v0.9b Initial public release Aug 3, 2011
Stalker Kit v1.0 Dec 3, 2011

Issue Tracker

Issue Tracker is the place you can publish any suggestions for improvement or any bugs you think you might have found during use. Please write down what you have to say, your suggestions will help us improve our products.

Additional Ideas

The Additional Ideas is the place to write your project ideas about this product, or other usages you've found. Or you can write them on Projects page.

Resources


How to buy

Click here to buy :KIT80248P.

See Also

Licensing

This documentation is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License 3.0 Source code and libraries are licensed under GPL/LGPL, see source code files for details.

External Links

Links to external webpages which provide more application ideas, documents/datasheet or software libraries.

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