Here are a couple of pictures showing the latest updates to the Arduino Sun Shield. I still need to design the PCB that toggles power on and off to different pairs of stepper motors, but that should hopefully be relatively easy.
I also need to order some of the electronic parts so that I can see how well they physically fit on the board. Once I’m sure that none of the parts interfere with each other, I’ll be ready to get this board printed.
Here is a quick list of the components on the Sun Shield:
Built in RTC
Manual Control through serial port activation switch
Heliostat to Sun Tracker activation switch
Joystick for manual control
I/O expander chip to give the Arduino more pins for controlling multiple machines
Outputs for connecting stepper driver board
Outputs to wind protection mode switch and potentiometer for switching between multiple targets.
Outputs for Adafruit XBee Adapter kit for future wireless capability.
Vin screw terminal to make it easy for connecting external DC power to Arduino. (A 12v solar panel and battery perhaps?)
That’s it for now!