December 30, 2015

A project log for AquaPic - Aquarium Controller

Reef tank controller used to monitor various parameters such as temp and pH, and also control equipment such as pump and lights.

Skyler BrandtSkyler Brandt 12/31/2015 at 01:310 Comments

Finals and the Christmas season have not been conducive to progress. I really need two solid days to rearrange and organize the underside of my tank to make room for the controller. Regardless, I have managed to get a little bit done in my free time. I laid out the analog and digital input boards. They are both really simple, and I'll send them out to get made after I get what I have done now up and running. I also wrote all the firmware for both cards. The code was extremely simple as well since most of it was copy and pasted from the other bits I've already finished. I haven't decided whether I'm going breadboard the cards and test the code that way, or just wait until I have PCB's and test then. The age old struggle between the right way and laziness.

The Raspberry Pi supply voltage is a little on the low side because of all the shotty connections between the power supply and the Raspberry Pi, so I order a little boost power puck thing to get the voltage back up to 5Vdc. I also wanted a way to automatically turn off the backlight when the screensaver came on, so I started re-purposed ramses0's xscreensaver-pi-hdmi script to control a GPIO pin to fire a MOSFET. The MOSFET will be paralleled with a switch that is already on the back of the touchscreen but is normally inaccessible. I still need to find a p-channel MOSFET to get this to work. I have quite a few SMD p-channel but no though-hole, so I've yet to find a good way, haven't investivataged all that hard yet though, to bodge one onto some protoboard or another sort of prototyping option.