Training, Notting Hill Gate, day 1

The week of the 11th of December 2017, I met up at Notting Hill Gate with some other engineers from my team, Paul, Hannah, Ash and Charlie, for us to embark on some joint training, what follows is a few blogs on how those four days of training panned out!

So working as a Lab engineer is a mixed role, we’re multi-discipline, people can come to us with all kinds of projects, that can need all kinds of skills. I’m pretty handy with a 3D printer and a laser cutter and some CAD software, but getting the time to play around with electronics is a rare luxury, so when we were told we’d be getting a week at our Notting Hill Gate lab with FabLab’s, the curriculum sounded like an ace opportunity to get some tinker time…

The first day was personal project day, giving yourself the time to just learn about something of interest that you wouldn’t normally have time for. Working out what to do was as simple as rummaging through some huge crates filled with all manner of goodies, from drones, to arduino boards, microbits, littlebits, you name it.

Being a big fan of the microbit, and an avid believer that they are hugely under-rated for electronic development, I decided to have a play around with a pair of microbit devices, as I wanted to use the internal radio function: It was something I’d been meaning to do for ages. Each day, we had to write up our activity, so, here is my little brain dump from day one…

Simple dual Axis spirit level with remote view via radio

Aim

Demonstrate simple use of internal inclination sensor and radio transmission and reception.

BOM

2x Microbit, 2x Battery Pack

Setup

Copy master code to one Microbit, slave code to the other. Power up both microbits, M will be displayed on the Master, S will be displayed on the Slave.

Use

Master is the remote display, position it in an easily visible location. Slave is the inclination detection device, place it on the surface to measure, hold it steady and press button A to show the pitch on the display and send the Pitch (Y) to the master for remote viewing, or press B to do the same for Roll. (X)

Further development

Real-time display on master using a “Chasing-dot” format to show roll and pitch on the slave, real-time output on serial port.

A very simple but enjoyable first day, nice to see the Microbit Radio in action, and see just how easy it is to use, makes the Microbit very handy for a number of projects… Watch this space!

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