Tag Archives: Featured

Santagostino’s predictive maintenance for HVAC uses Nano RP2040 Connect

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Santagostino predictive maintenance Nano RP2040 Connect

Prevention is better than cure is pretty much every respect. Heating, ventilation and air conditioning included. The Arduino Pro team has been working with Italy’s Santagostino to deploy an impressive array of predictive maintenance solutions across the region’s medical sector.

Environment Management in Medical Centers

Santagostino operates a network of 35 medical centers across Italy. It’s work includes diagnostic tests, procedures and setting up and maintaining suitable, medical-grade environments within the centers. The HVAC systems played an important part of that even before the COVID pandemic, but is even more essential now.

So if a fault arose in the HVAC system it required the staff to notice it, in the first place. Then they’d need to report it, and wait for a technician to arrive and fix it. The inevitable delays could meant whole departments could potentially be unable to operate until the repairs took place.

But that’s the nature of a breakdown. The fault occurs, it gets reported, it gets fixed. You can’t fix something that isn’t faulty, right?

Well, maybe you can.

Predictive Maintenance Solutions with Arduino

Santagostino set about finding a monitoring solution that was modular, scalable, operated remotely and was adaptable enough to suit whatever HVAC system was in place. Ultimately it was built around a series of Arduino Nano RP2040 Connects. These have been installed in the HVAC units, and sending a constant stream of data back for analysis.

The Nano RP2040 Connect’s built-in accelerometer detects vibrations, and monitors if a system is running or not. By detecting unexpected stoppages, excessive vibrations, errant motion and analyzing that data with machine learning, a network of predictive maintenance systems was built across the facilities.

Not only is it working to alert the maintenance teams of imminent breakdowns, it allows them to schedule timely maintenance schedules before a fault occurs. A welcome side effect is that the system also allows machinery to be reduce operation when it’s not needed, saving budget and extending equipment life cycles in the process.

There’s a case study over on the Arduino Pro website that gives you a lot more details on the system. In it you can see how it can be deployed across different industries, scenarios and sectors. And our own Stefano Implicito spoke with Santagostino’s CTO Andrea Codini about the system, which you can take a look at below.

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Arduino Week 2022: Call for speakers

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Arduino Week 2022

This year, Arduino Day is becoming Arduino Week. Taking place on 21-26 March, 2022, we’ll have more talks, events and presentations than ever before.

Naturally you can expect the usual excitement from the annual Arduino festival. From makers to education and industry, we’ll be bringing you the biggest and the best Arduino has to offer. But there’s also a strong focus on community for the first week-long event. And that means we want to hear from you.

If you have a talk, idea, presentation or project you want to share, please click the button below to tell us all about it.

What Kinds of Talks Are We Looking For?

First and foremost, we don’t want to stifle your creativity. If you’ve got a great idea for something that you think the Arduino community would enjoy, now’s the time to share it. Makers, teachers, students, inventors, coders, influencers, pioneers, entrepreneurs, CEOs, industry, leaders, community groups; anyone and everyone is invited to join us and add to the Arduino Week celebrations.

There might be a project you’ve built that you’d like to showcase. Or maybe you’ve been running an extracurricular program that helps people to learn about Arduino or electronics that you want to tell the world about. Did you pick up your first Arduino board during lockdown and do something cool with it? Tell us!

It doesn’t have to be epic, either. If you’ve got a top tip about project building, coding or using Arduino that you’d love to share, let us know about it! No talk is too big, too small or too unusual to join in with Arduino Week. If it helps, entertains or showcases the community, we want to include it.

We’re here to help flesh out your ideas, too. So don’t worry if there’s something you’d love to bring to Arduino Week but aren’t quite sure how to make it happen. Get in touch, and let’s talk about how you can get involved.

This is going to be the biggest celebration of Arduino ever undertaken. So it’s the perfect way to demonstrate your skills, meet the global community, and get inspired for the next decade of awesome electronics projects.

Ready to join in? Click below to fill out the form, and you could be the star of the show during the 2022 Arduino Week! 

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New workflow for Arduino library submissions

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Arduino Libraries Submissions process update

Arduino library submissions have a new, easier and more transparent workflow.

Libraries are one of the pillars of the Arduino ecosystem. At time of writing, more than 3,780 open source libraries are available to perform any kind of task. This includes communication with external components and using algorithms for data processing. Such a variety of shared building blocks helps achieve things quickly without the need to write low-level code.

Beyond the official libraries maintained by the Arduino team, most are contributed by the community. Anyone can submit a new library for inclusion, provided it meets the specification and passes the Arduino Lint checks.

Note: Did you know you can run the tool locally to check the compliance status of your current libraries?

A new Arduino library submissions process

We’re happy to announce that the submission process for community libraries has been refactored. The goal is making it leaner, more automated and more transparent. Previously you would open an issue on the Arduino IDE repository for the Arduino team to handle the request manually. Instead, we’ve now established an official GitHub repository containing the library registry.

Submitting a new library is now as simple as opening a pull request to that repository. Then you add the URL of the library’s repository to the list. A bot performs automated checks and, when passed, the request will be merged immediately. Within one day, the new library will be listed in the Arduino library directory. It’ll also be made available within the IDE, the Arduino CLI command line tool and the Web Editor. The Arduino team will still be monitoring the process in order to fight abuses and to provide assistance.

After a library is indexed, new versions are automatically detected and published (if compliant). So nothing changes for existing libraries and no action is required. See the repository documentation for more details about the new process and join the discussion in the forum to provide your feedback.

Subscribe to the Arduino newsletter so you don’t miss any other exciting developments!

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Arduino Cloud now supports ESP32 devices

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Arduino Cloud now supports ESP32

Support for ESP32 devices is now available on the Arduino IoT Cloud. It’s a huge step forward in bringing IoT devices of all kinds together, and giving them a way to get connected, communicate with each other, and offer new levels of convenience and control.

A new world of IoT connectivity

Arduino’s been working on this for some time, and we’re really excited to introduced ESP32 support by including the Arduino Core developed by Espressif on the Arduino Cloud platform. This opens up cloud-connected projects to a whole new world of IoT devices, projects and possibilities. Web Editor is by far the most convenient way to program an ESP32, and to connect it and control it via a cloud platform.

Support for ESP8266 devices is already available, and was recently moved into the free Arduino Cloud tier. The addition of ESP32 boards, along with the wide range of Cloud-compatible Arduino devices, adds some serious power to a Cloud account.

It’s all about communication. There’s never been an easier way to program your boards, or implement device-to-device communication in IoT. Once your devices are hooked up to an IoT Cloud account, they can talk to each other, sync variables, share data and be combined into powerful dashboards. You even get seamless smartphone control through the Arduino IoT Remote apps. Or if you just want a simpler, easier way to program your ESP32 boards, the Arduino Cloud Web Editor makes it a walk in the park.

It’s the next step in making Arduino Cloud into a secure, ubiquitous platform for all connected devices. It’s still early days, but that’s where the community comes in. We want you guys to get on there, hook up your boards, and test the limits of what’s possible in Cloud-connected projects.

Connect Your ESP32 to the Cloud

There are only a couple of things you need to get an ESP32 board onto Arduino Cloud.

An account on the Arduino IoT Cloud, of course. You’ve got multiple options, so plenty of ways to tailor the subscription to exactly what you need. Get started with the free plan, and then just bump it up to the next level once you’re ready.

Arduino Cloud Plans

Grab the Arduino Create Agent, which runs in the background on your computer. It lets Arduino IoT Cloud detect and communicate with supported boards. It makes it a doddle to upload sketches from your web browser using the Web Editor IDE, as well as read and write data.

Note: It’s possible your computer might need drivers to recognize your ESP32 board on the serial port. If you’re having difficulties, check in with the board manufacturer to get the necessary drivers.

And then you’re good to go! Follow the Arduino IoT Cloud process just as you would with any other board. Create a device, select “ESP32 device”, and take note of your secret key during this setup process.

Your contribution and tests will really help to build on this exciting evolution of Arduino IoT Cloud. So we want to hear all about it. Join us over on the forum to share your experiences.

This is a great way to upgrade existing projects, home automation or other applications. It makes it so easy to take advantage of IoT Cloud’s powerhouse features. With almost no code, you can have any combination of Arduino, ESP8266 and ESP32 boards communicating and working together seamlessly and wirelessly. It’ll cut the time it takes to build adventurous new projects while expanding the possibilities and significantly reducing the legwork.

Once you’re in the Cloud, there’s no looking back!

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The Arduino Nano RP2040 Connect is here

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It was back in January that we first introduced you to the Arduino Nano RP2040 Connect. The first Arduino board to include Raspberry Pi silicon. It’s been a roller coaster ride getting it to you, and enthusiasm during the wait has been incredibly encouraging. The wait, you’ll be glad to hear, is over.

The Arduino Nano RP2040 Connect mountain climbing

The RP2040 Processor

Working with the Raspberry Pi Foundation is nothing short of a pleasure. The teams there make some incredible devices, and their first in-house silicon is no exception. These guys get it.

This system-on-a-chip is a 32-bit dual-core ARM Cortex-M0+ microcontroller, clocked at 133MHz and is powerful enough to run TensorFlow Lite. It’s young, but proving to be incredibly popular with makers, as well as electronics manufacturers. It’s going to be incredibly exciting to see how the Arduino community reacts to it. We can only imagine what you guys can achieve with the extra features of the Nano RP2040 Connect board.

Welcome the Arduino Nano RP2040 Connect

So it was an easy choice for Arduino to put an RP2040 at the core of a new board. We felt so strongly about the excellence of this new chip that we knew it deserved a powerful, premium Nano board that is unrivalled in terms of features.

First and foremost is the inclusion of the u-blox NINA-W102 WiFi and Bluetooth radio module. Nano users are probably quite familiar with this excellent module already.

Coupled with a six-axis machine learning-capable IMU motion sensor, on-board microphone for sound and voice activation, an RGB LED and loads of multi-function GPIO pins, this is the project maker’s dream come true. And all on such a tiny board.

Nano RP2040 Connect in the Cloud

Just like everything Arduino, the hardware of the Nano RP2040 Connect is only half the story.

Right off the bat this device is fully compatible with the Arduino Cloud. It landed at just the right moment, as Arduino Cloud plans were given an overhaul. These offer a lot more on the free tier, while bringing in a new Entry Plan that really unlocks the power of the cloud.

Nano RP2040 Connect to Arduino Cloud

Because the Nano RP2040 Connect is a connected device, this opens up all kinds of possibilities. Not least of all over-the-air updates and programming. This alone can make a Cloud accompaniment to the board worthwhile. It gives you full, incredibly easy access to the hardware. This is true even after it’s been deployed, installed or buried in the guts of a project. If it’s got a WiFi signal, you can do everything as if it was plugged in by USB. Furthermore, it has the added bonus of smartphone control through the Arduino IoT Remote app.

The Cloud even makes it super easy for your Nano RP2040 Connect to communicate wirelessly with other boards. Any devices connected to your Arduino Cloud can communicate, and we’re not just talking about official Arduino boards.

So Much Software

A couple of weeks ago we updated the official Arduino Mbed Core to provide native RP2040 support.

The plug-and-play nature of the Arduino Core means you can use existing sketches you made for, say, a Nano 33 BLE Sense on your brand new Nano RP2040 Connect. So you can have this little workhorse up and running within minutes, if you’ve already been working on some project sketches. Plus, it’s compatible with the entire RP2040 software ecosystem, so if this is an upgrade for an existing RP2040 board, you’re good to go.

If you’re just getting started on sketches for the device, it offers full support for MicroPython. There’s even a free OpenMV license bundled in, for any machine vision projects you might have planned.

Arduino Nano RP2040 Connect

Go Get Your Arduino Nano RP2040 Connect

Yes, there’s a limited supply at launch. We built as many as possible for the first run. But a lot have been sent out to our reseller partners. So head on over to the store right now if you want to be one of the first to get this premium RP2040 board.

If you want to stay up to date on all things Arduino Nano RP2040 Connect, make sure you’re signed up to our email list. From there we’ll keep you advised on restocking, new updates, special offers and everything else to do with this tiny, but mighty, board.

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Arduino Docs has all the info you ever need about Arduino boards

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The truth is, we never entirely got to grips with Arduino documentation. Until now. Now there’s a new standard for gathering together product info, tech specs and tutorials, that we’re calling Arduino Docs. We’re excited to share it with the Arduino community who’ll soon be able to help it grow.

Arduino Docs is now live

It began with the Uno

When the Arduino Uno was launched around 15 years ago, its detailed documentation was a vital part of its success. It wouldn’t be at all unreasonable to say that its online resources were a driving factor in the establishment and growth of the primordial Arduino community.

But you’re probably quite aware of Arduino’s history, and the rapid growth that followed. Creating, organizing and maintaining that level of documentation around each and every board became a huge task. The complexity was one thing, but the open-source nature also meant that a lot of third party content was generated. Which is great, and is still very much encouraged, but it also muddied the waters of supporting content. 

So getting all that essential info together in one place, while providing a great experience for the users, has been a passion project for a lot of people at Arduino. And now, it’s ready.

Which brings us back to today, and the launch of a whole new approach to the online presence of Arduino boards. Welcome to Arduino Docs.

The All New Arduino Docs Site

The new Arduino Docs site launches with a detailed, but easy-to-use breakdown of everything you ever wanted to know about the official boards and products.

Every product will get its own page, broken down into standardized sections so you have instant, easy access to what you need.

  • Overview: You’ll begin here when you take a look at a board on the Arduino Docs site. It’s a bird’s-eye-view of the board’s description and purpose, its main features, tech specs, revision logs (where applicable) and compatibility options.
  • Essentials: This section gets you started with using the board in question. Here you’ll find quick start guides, suggestions for libraries, and useful basics on using Arduino. Perfect for newcomers or anyone needing a refresher.
  • Tutorials: Any and all tutorials connected to the board will be marshalled here. You’ll never have to go hunting when you’re looking to build something awesome. These tutorials will showcase the different features of each board, giving you a full understanding of what’s possible.
  • Resources: This is where we’ll keep the datasheets, downloads, pinout diagrams, schematics and other useful documents and files.
Pinout Diagrams on Arduino Docs

It’s been no small feat collating all this information, and reformatting into something that’s as useful for beginners as it is for experts and engineers. It’ll kick off with over 130 tutorials, dozens of boards, and a great selection of shields, all given a brand new home.

But it’s not just about the hardware. The new Arduino Docs site aims to be the most encyclopedic resource we’ve ever compiled, so it includes sections for software (such as the IDEs), Cloud (for the web editor and other Arduino Cloud tools) and a great asset for understanding the foundations of Arduino’s approach to electronics.

Cool Community Content

Lots of companies say they’re all about community. But in our case it’s actually true! Arduino isn’t a company or a board or a platform. It’s a community.

You guys created much of the content, tutorials and documentation out there. That’s not going to change now that we’ve launched Arduino Docs. GitHub is home to the whole system (we’re tech nerds, we can’t help it). That means members of the community will soon be able to add, edit and influence the Arduino Docs content.

Resources for all boards on Arduino Docs

The content team will review and approve submissions and branches made through GitHub. So what you’re seeing right now is the embryonic stage of Arduino Docs. We envisage amazing things once the community is able to get involved. Sign up to our newsletter so we can keep you posted on when that becomes possible, and about updates, leaks and more.

We’re very proud of the work that the various internal teams have done in making this happen. We hope you are too, and as always we really want any and all feedback you have on this new and valuable Arduino resource.

Please go and take a look, and do stop by the forums to tell us all about your experience.

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