Emergency Egg Locator Beacon (EELB)

Posted on Feb 6, 2014

This project was inspired by a circuit that a friend of mine, Simon Field, over at Scitoys. com showed me. He had built a very simple transmitter circuit out of a 1Mhz `can` oscillator and a serial connector (see it here ) In his circuit he used a computer to turn the transmitter on and off and to send Morse code. In the United States (and possibl

Emergency Egg Locator Beacon (EELB)
Click here to download the full size of the above Circuit.

y elsewhere) there is a custom at Easter to hide Easter eggs so that the children can search for them. While some of the eggs may in fact be the spawn of chickens, most of the time they are egg shaped plastic carriers into which candy is placed. The kids find the eggs, they extract the candy, and then the kids run around at supersonic velocity on a sugar high all afternoon. Of course sometimes the Easter Bunny forgets where he hid the eggs. Technology to the rescue! This project is an "Emergency Egg Locator Beacon" or EELB for short. The EELB is so small it could easily be embedded in a plastic Easter egg with room left over for candy treats. It emits a customizable message on the AM band that can be picked up by any transistor AM radio, and with simple radio direction finding (RDF) techniques anyone can locate the missing eggs. I was reading the datasheet for the PIC 12F6xx series of microprocessors and noticed that there was a clock mode that fed the system clock, divided by four, out one of the pins. The presumed used is for external synchronization but I had other ideas. Further, the 12F6xx series PICs have an internal oscillator that can run them at 4Mhz. So here we had a computer in an 8 pin dip that could put 1Mhz out on one of its pins. I couldn`t pass that up. The PIC is configured to generate a 1Mhz output on CLKOUT. (pin 3 in the datasheet). That pin drives a 220 ohm resistor which is connected to an LED that is...

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