Team Hovercraft

Posted on Feb 5, 2014

A PIC is a Programmable Integrated Circuit. It is the big black ractangle on our breadboard. The standard PIC used in the course was a 28-pin package, the Microchip PIC18F2455. For our project, however, we uses a more robust PIC with more advanced PWM (Pulse Width Modulation) features that we were hoping to make better use of, so we used a 40-pin

Team Hovercraft
Click here to download the full size of the above Circuit.

package, the Microchip PIC18F4455. This more robust PIC works in almost the same way as the other when it comes to the software and the function of the inputs and outputs, which made it easy to switch to, but because it is a 40-pin package as opposed to the much smaller 28-pin package, We couldn`t just drop in the new PIC. In order to successfully convert from the 28-pin PIC to the 40-pin PIC, we had to sort through the documentation on the Microchip website. Once we found the specs for the two PICs, We were able to translate from the course materials which described the PIC18F2455 and how to connect it to the circuitry, and get the technical names associated with the pins on that PIC, and then find the right pins on the new PIC (See Figure 1). Once we were done decoding the PIC, we had to build the circuit. About the PIC - The PIC is a programmable computer with digital and `analog` inputs and outputs. It has a USB interface which allows us to send commands and data to the PIC, and to request data from the PIC. In our circuit we only use 6 digital outputs and 3 analog inputs. These analog inputs are not really analog, but rather convert a voltage between 0 and +5V to a number between 0 and 1023. (As stated in the Code section, we lose 2 bits of resolution, so our utilized value is between 0 and 255). The breadboard is the white grid on which our circuit is built. The breadboard is mainly a prototyping utility which would...

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