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After orbiting Bennu for two years, OSIRIS-REx descended towards the asteroid and gathered a sample of rubble. The spacecraft is expected to make its return journey back to Earth in March 2021, arriving in September 2023. (Image Credit: NASA/Goddard/University of Arizona)   NASA has been busy. They found water on the Moon today (10/26/2020)! They are also planning to return a sample from a moving asteroid!   On October 20th, NASA’s OSIRIS-REx spacecraft landed on Bennu, an aste ...
NASA has selected Nokia to build the 4G network on the moon. (Image Credit: NASA)   NASA has chosen Nokia to build the first 4G network on the moon. The Finnish telecommunications firm said its Bell Labs division is lending its technology to the US space agency to help construct and deploy the network on the moon, expected to launch in late 2022. Nokia received a grant of $14.1 million for this project. Additionally, the space administration awarded $370 million to 14 firms to deploy innov ...
Introduction Earlier this year I started a project to design and build a control board.  Whilst waiting for a prototype PCB to be manufactured and for the result of a roadtest application to be announced, I started looking at LabVIEW NXG with the intention of automating testing of that board.  Undertaking the characterisation of 16-bit ADCs and DACs with 65,536 possible values each and coordinating with I2C signals from an Arduino, by hand, didn't appeal (funny that!) jancumps has prod ...
Introduction In this post, Post 1, I reviewed LabVIEW NXG and want to carry on the series by describing a framework I have created to simplify the creation of test applications and the interaction with test instruments.  In Post 1 I went through the process of creating a very simple application to obtain a test instrument's identity using the NI VISA components; as I started to create some applications to get to grips with LabVIEW NXG it became very clear that I was duplicating code, and co ...
Introduction In this post, Post 2, I describe an instrument testing framework.  Whilst creating that framework, I wanted to be able to unit test (regression test) parts of it as I progressed - there was a degree of complexity that I needed to ensure didn't break as I progressed the build.  This led me to being diverted for a period of time creating some Unit Tests and eventually abstracting that out into a Unit Test Framework.   This framework is no JUnit equivalent but quite del ...
Most humans living on Earth have experienced the dramatic turn of events that the year 2020 brought.  We all have been affected somehow by the Covid-19 pandemic. We are 3 months away from the end of the year 2020, and no definitive solution has been offered yet to eradicate the virus, so it makes sense that we try to detect it sooner to contain the spread. That is what engineers of the University of Florida are attempting to do by creating new wearable devices that will help us maintain a s ...
This post documents the main design for the the electronic load we made here on element14. The board that controls the load, measures performance and provides feedback.   Load Board CAD version:     optional use as a PSU PCB       BOM: Ref Value Footprint optional load psu manf. Nr source description url C1 330n Capacitors_SMD:C_1206_HandSoldering x x C2 10n Capacitors_SMD:C_1206_HandSoldering x x C3 47u Capacitors_SMD:C_1210_HandSoldering ...
This post documents the ADC firmware for the electronic load we made here on element14.   The DAC-ADC BoosterPack          Output pin assignments All pins isolated from LaunchPad if P1 and P2 open. P1 and P2 are for BoosterPack testing only, to deliver power to the DAC, ADC and REF ship when no power board is connected. In the final design, P1 and P2 need to be open and the power board has to provide GND and V+ for these 3 ICs. It should be at least 3V ( ...
This blog documents focuses on the BoosterPack pins use for the electronic load that peteroakes, jc2048 and jancumps designed.     MSP432 LaunchPad pin assignments    Pin Name Use J1.1 +3V3 3v3 for the i2c pull-ups J5.3 P3.2 UART6 RX J5.4 P3.3 UART5 TX J1.9 P6.5 i2c SCL J1.10 P6.4 i2c SDA J3.22 GND ground J1.2 P6.0 LCD Power Control J1.5 P4.13 LCD SPI CS J1.6 P1.5 LCD SPI CLK J2.2 P2.5 LCD External COM Inversion (not used) J2.6 P1.6 LCD SPI SIMO J3.29 reserved P5.4 ADC_IN ...
This blog documents focuses on the UART approach for the electronic load that peteroakes, jc2048 and jancumps designed. UART combined with SCPI are the programming interface for the instruments.   UART  Info: initial design used UART1 as 2nd option. When switching to the Red MSP432 LaunchPad, this switched to UART6. Where you see UART1, think UART6.   UART module if USB UART0 9600/8/1/N   UART module if TTL UART6 115200/8/1/N   The project uses uses the TI-RTOS ...
This blog documents focuses on the RTOS approach for the electronic load that peteroakes, jc2048 and jancumps designed.   CCS 8 with MSP432 compiler TI v 16.12.0.STS or > TI-RTOS for MSP43X, any SimpleLink version     RTOS Tasks overview  Task Priority Vital Stack Argument0 (schedule) Comments threadHeartBeat 1 no 1024 1000 pulse led as visual clue of RTOS health threadUART 10 no 1024 0 Managed by Semaphore SEM_uart_rx react on incoming traffic on UART. Send to ...
This blog documents focuses on the SCPI functionality of the electronic load that peteroakes, jc2048 and jancumps designed. The interface works with software that can do serial communications on a COM port. This project comes with a LABView driver and 2 proto GUIs.   SCPI Interface  SCPI Command status SCPI standard Comment Example *IDN? works Standard SCPI, implemented by library callsign THEBREADBOARD,ELECTRONICLOAD,0,01.00 *CLS check Standard SCPI, implemented by library SYST ...
Introduction How is it Used? How does it Work? Is it Legal? Circuit Details Trying it out Summary   Introduction I needed to upgrade a spare room at home to convert it into an office. The ceiling has some low-voltage halogen lights fitted which had gradually failed over the years (more to do with the heat damaging the connections, rather than the bulbs failing).   I wished to upgrade them to LED lights, and replace the low-voltage power supplies too (replacing ...

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