Arduino shield simplifies use of fibre-optic datalink in MPU designs

Simple, Secure, Reliable

by gabi

OMC, the pioneer in optoelectronics design & manufacture, has launched an H19 fibre optic shield, compatible with Arduino Uno, to demonstrate how an optical fibre datalink can easily be incorporated into a microprocessor-based design. The shields combine transmitter, receiver and all necessary drivers plus digital output which is ideal for interfacing with MPUs. An all-in-one design simplifies the receiver circuit and avoids having to design and include the traditional pin diode amplifier and Schmitt trigger circuits needed to give a digital output.

Comments William Heath, OMC’s Commercial Director: “Certain applications require total confidence in the integrity of the data transmission. Fibre optic datalinks are reliable, totally secure, noise-free, interference-proof and electrically-isolated. These shields have been designed to simplify the process of integrating fibre optic datalinks into a digital system.”

The shield is designed for use with the Arduino Uno and is stackable. It has jumpers for both transmitter and receiver devices. An example program is provided which shows a datalink using the UART ports to transmit data over the optical fibre link. Data can be monitored either by using the serial monitor of the Arduino software, or the code is written to interface with a standard 16×2 LCD shield which can be stacked on top of the fibre shield.

The shield can be used with any of the available microprocessor baud rates: 300, 600, 1200, 2400, 4800, 9600, 14400, 19200, 28800, 38400, 57600, or 115200. The actual fibre optic emitter and receiver pair can operate up to 5Mbd – the shield is simply a way of demonstrating the potential of incorporating an optical fibre link into a design.

The shield can be used with PMMA cables up to 25 metres long in the standard configuration. For extended range OMC can offer a high power emitter option and also devices suitable for use with glass fibre if PMMA is not suitable in the application. The transmitter and receivers can be ordered separately to build into customers’ own designs. Other cable lengths and alternative fibre/jacket types are also available on request. OMC can also offer the transmitter and receiver parts in this shield mounted in alternative housings to connect with different fibre types.


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