Raspberry Pi add-on teaches Node-RED I/O programming

On Kickstarter: Sequent has launched a $50 “Raspberry Pi I/O Learning Kit” with an STM MCU, 4x opto-isolated inputs, 2x relays, RS485, PWM output, power I/Os, and a Node-RED learning tutorial.

Sequent Microsystems, which specializes in Raspberry Pi add-on boards for I/O controls, such as its 16-Inputs for Raspberry Pi HAT, has now spun another Pi add-on aimed at teaching embedded I/O concepts using Node-RED, complete with downloadable tutorials. The company has already won Kickstarter funding for the $50 Raspberry Pi I/O Learning Kit, which ships in January.

Raspberry Pi I/O Learning Kit with (left) and without the Raspberry Pi
(click images to enlarge)

The Raspberry Pi I/O Learning Kit is equipped with a 32-bit STM microcontroller, an RS485 serial port transceiver, and a PWM output capable of driving a 5VDC/100mA motor. Other features include 4x optically isolated contact closure inputs and 2x relays that can drive 8A and 24V loads with LED status. You also get a 0-10V input and output and a 4-20mA current loop input and output, a pushbutton, and 4x programmable LEDs.

The I/O board is powered by a BYO Raspberry Pi via GPIO. It requires 5V/50mA to operate with the relays off or 200mA with both relays on. The kit includes 2x 2-pin plugs for the RS485 and PWM-driven micromotor, 8x 3-pin plugs for the I/Os, a self-test loopback cable, and brass standoffs, screws, and nuts.

Raspberry Pi I/O Learning Kit block diagram (left) and detail view
(click images to enlarge)

The KS page mentions an optional add-on kit that is not included among the standard packages. You can add the $25 kit at the end of your pledge. The kit supplies an on/off switch, thermistor, photoresistor, potentiometer, RS485 temperature and humidity sensor, and a micromotor.

Sequent has already posted a link to the first three chapters of the 12-chapter Node-RED tutorial. The tutorials show how to use the Node-RED visual I/O programming environment to control each of the interfaces of the Learning Kit. Examples range from building simple flows using the pushbuttons and LEDs to controlling devices

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