Yet another energy monitor

A low cost Energy-Monitor system which is deeply influenced by the projekt

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This project is basically a rebuild of the emontx V3 with some variations.

First of all I build the power supply on the PCB board. The transformer has two sec. coils, so I can use one for the power supply and the other for measuring the voltage. There is no need for a second or external power supply since I want to install the PCB inside my fuse box.

As the emontx, my module also sends the data via 433MHz to a raspberry PI. The incoming data is read by a python script and stored in a sqllight databse.

The visualization of the data eg. statistics of power usage per hour, day, week month is done with a nice opensource Java Script library on an lighttpd LAMP system.
All scripts I used are provided on my Github page.


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  • 1 × 270R, 1% resisor
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  • 1 × DIP28-sockel Power Management ICs / Power Supply Modules
  • 1 × HC-11 to TTL CC1101 Module 433Mhz

View all 24 components

  • 1
    Step 1

    Power source

    As mentioned in the discretion, I used a transformer with two secondary coils, so I could use one for the power supply and the other to measure the voltage. As the power source is used as the reverence for the ADC converter (Aref), it had to be very stable and precise.

    The emonV3 has a build in MCP1702 linear voltage regulator with 0.5% tolerance. Unfortunately I could not get my hands on one of these, so I had to use an equally adequate LP2950 (50 Eur. Ct) with 5 V output voltage. After the usual capacitors to sooth the voltage I fed the µC with 4.99 V. According to the datasheet of the LP2950 the voltage is stable up to a couple 100 mA drawn.

  • 2
    Step 2

    Voltage measurement

    The circuit for the voltage measurement is basically the same as for the emontx, except for the voltage divider right at the transformer exit (see This page for a very good explanation). The emontx uses a 100 and 10K resistor and a 9 V transformer, I use a 6 V one. So with these resistors and my smaller transformer I would end up with about 0.77 V coming from the transformer as a oscillating voltage on top of 2.5 V from the voltage divider. In sum only 3.27 V of the 5 V my ADC could measure.

    So I would waste about 1.7 volts and with that resolution. So I exchanged the 10K resistor with a 22K one and end up with:

    Add these 1.52 V to the 2.5 V from the voltage divider and you end up at 4.02 V, a much better voltage range for the ADC to work with.

  • 3
    Step 3

    µC power supply and reference voltage

    I learned it the hard way how important decoupling capacitors are...

    My ADC measurements were always a bit unstable until I read more about the ADC on a micro controller (RTFM!) and fixed this issue with some capacitors near to the IC.

    Thats what I did to get stable ADC measurements

    • 100 nF capacitor between Vcc and Gnd
    • 100 nF capacitor between AVcc and Gnd
    • 100 nF capacitor between Aref and Gnd
    • Supply 5V to AVcc / Gnd through a separate, which is not extended from Vcc and Gnd.

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dechemist wrote 09/07/2015 at 20:25 point

Hey thats my first comment on hackaday ever ! Thanks ;)

I would like to complete this blog first and then check out your project in more detail. It looks interesting though ! 

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Luke Beno wrote 09/09/2015 at 20:18 point

Thats cool, I'm ready whenever you are, let me know if you have any questions.

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Luke Beno wrote 09/07/2015 at 18:43 point

Cool project, would you also be interested in pushing your energy data to my project, analog.io

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dechemist wrote 10/25/2015 at 17:12 point

Hey sorry for the long delay. I read that your project did not make it to the finals, sorry for that ! Are you still interested in my data  / me dumping the data to ?

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