Output - Mechanisms and Actuation

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Materials for in-class exercise

Immersion Neutrino

  • Immersion Neutrino Info
  • Download neutrino-sdk.zip (use same l/p as for readings) and unzip
  • look through daughterboard userguide PDF to see how to install the shield on your Arduino.
  • Remember to change the Arduino IDE to specify "Arduino UNO" as the board; also find the appropriate Serial port (/dev/tty.usbmodemXXX on a Mac)
  • Connect an ERM (eccentric rotating mass) actuator. Then open Immersion_Neutrino_demo.ino to run through a test of haptic effects 0-58
  • Switch out the ERM for an LRA (linear resonant actuator). You'll have to move the jumper J8, labeled ERM/LRA on the Immersion shield to the other side. Modify the code to run through effects 59-120 with it.
  • Now build a simple device that gives users haptic feedback on their actions. For example, you can use your accelerometer for tilting and indicate haptically when a user has crossed a threshold. Or you can use the touchsense capacitive touch library and give users haptic feedback when their touch has been recognized.

Make sure the shield has the right orientation and is not offset


Servo Motor

  • Connect a sub micro servo: Red to 5V, Black to GND, White to a PWM pin - start with pin 9. An extra-long header that you insert into the breadboard works well for this.
  • Open File-Examples-Servo-Sweep and upload to check that you can communicate with your servo.
  • Now program the servo and build a simple mechanism to do something useful. For example, the servo could push on a physical button whenever you send a character over the serial port to your board.

Sub Micro Servo example The microcontroller in this example is the Arduino-compatible Teensy 2.0.


  • Grab a TIP120 power transistor, a 1N4001 diode and a 1k resistor. Then build the basic actuation circuit from your reading.
  • Take out a desktop power supply and some banana plug to alligator clip leads. Set the voltage to 12V. Connect the red + terminal to the positive supply voltage side of your solenoid. Connect the green GND to ground. Make sure you share ground between the desktop power supply and the Boarduino power supply.
  • Run File-Example-Basics-Blink but drive the solenoid instead of an LED.

Solenoid example

Solenoid example