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Internet of Things Build Project using the ESP8266

WiFi Serial Transceiver Module
The last few weeks we’ve been playing with the ESP8266, an Arduino and some sensors and thought we could have a build at H4H for those who want to learn more about this amazing little module.
Build description:
We will be showing you how to interface your Arduino with the new ESP8266 wifi module and send data from sensors connected to the Arduino to a server on your LAN or to one of the IOT web services, e.g. ThingSpeak.
For this course we will be using the ACS714 current sensor and/or the DHT11 Digital Temperature and Humidity Sensor, but feel free to bring any sensor you like.
On the server side we will run a simple socket program to show how the ESP connects and sends data.
Then we’ll setup a Thingspeak channel and show you how to send data to it.
We will only be prototyping this, in other words, the final product is breadboard with jumper wires to connect everything.
Future courses will build on this to make a more permanent product and will consist of designing and etching circuit boards, independent power supplies, housing your product, more advanced python to display graphs of your data, etc.
You need to be familiar with the Arduino environment, e.g. IDE and how to upload sketches, etc.
Equipment used in the build
– ESP8266 serial wireless module
– Arduino Pro Mini 3V3 (The ESP8266 is not 5V tolerant)
– CP2102 USB Programmer Module (This serial module talks 3.3V)
– ACS714 -30A to +30A current sensor (1)
– Breadboard
– F-F and M-M Jumper wires
– Your own laptop/computer with Arduino IDE installed.
(1) If you use the ACS714 you will also need a 220V plug, adaptor and about 1M of cable.
It will be on Tuesday evenings, probably starting middle of February.
Complete the form below if you are interested. The cut-off will be end of January.

Posted in: Builds, Courses

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RoboBeast hot off the production line


On Saturday we got to play with one of the RoboBeasts fresh off the production line – Arnold took these stunning pictures:

Printing some quadcopter parts

Printing some quadcopter parts

Printing a frog (again)

Printing squiggles


Apart from helping out with the testing (uhmm…yeah right), the reason for us wanting to use the RoboBeast is, it is FAST!!!  If you have ever messed around with 3d printing, you will know there is a lot of waiting involved… also it has a massive print bed (320 x 385mm) so quadcopter frames easily fit onto it 🙂

We printed parts for the Spidex Micro ( and Squiggles – Philip’s quadruped remix (

The RoboBeast and Morgan joint production line is currently in the back section of House4Hack, occupying the old garage and main bedroom (the yellow bits in the picture below). The new workshop has been filled with some impressive machines and members are welcome to use these after completing the initiation course.

Robohadn, Robobeast and Morgan production line

Robohand, Robobeast and Morgan production line


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High Altitude Glider Video


Philip tells the story of our High Altitude Glider FPV flite.  The project was a huge success and went without a glitch…we released the glider at 20000 ft and the balloon + camera payload went to 32km.

We completed this project in collaboration with the HABEX team  – we loved working with these like-minded guys, and they

  • organized sponsorship of the hydrogen from AFROX
  • sponsored the balloons
  • sponsored the APRS units used (three in total for cars and glider)
  • communicated and liaised with CAMU for permission to complete the endeavour
  • providing lots of wisdom, advise, support and direction
  • lots of other things, without which this would not have been possible!
Posted in: Builds, FPV, Glider, quadcopter

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