Micro Computing
Micro Computing - Making small computers do big things.

A series of projects using commonly available microcontrollers and microprocessors.

Jeroen Steeman - Micro computer projects

Micro computer - Software Defined Radio

Raspberry PI Software Defined Radio

Raspberry PI configured as portable Software Defined Radio system.

Interfacing micro computers with real world applications. Using the PI as UHF remote digital radio receiver.


Endurance tests

Reliability and endurance testing 24/7.


Comparative tests

Comparative testing between two different types.


Hardware calibration

Tuning the hardware for testing.

PI Controller

Main control unit

Main controller unit.

Microcontroller - Morse code generator

Also check out the ATTiny Morse Code callsign generator. It uses an eight pin Amitel low power AVR. It is so small it can be built into a microphone if required.

Morse Code callsign generator

ATtiny morse code callsign generator schematic

ATtiny morse code callsign generator schematic.


Video of the operational prototype

Microprocessor - Smart falconry telemetry

Going down to the core, the falconry telemetry transceiver. This is a full stack project, from hardware design, through firmware and software development. A very compact SMD smart falconry transmitter is about as small as I can go soldering these small components.


electronic components

Pieces of the prototype puzzle for the proof of concept.


SMD microcontroller

If you can see it, you can solder it. It is said.

Hardware PCB design

Hardware PCB design

Placing components on a micro PCB design.



The 'smart' part of the falconry telemetry transceiver.

Microprocessor - Smart LED lighting for the home.

Using an Arduino Nano with a passive infrared sensor to powerLED strips via a pulse width modulated field effect transistor. Slow fade in and automatically power off after 60 seconds. Also works great for staircases and ambient room lighting. The added benefit of PWM is that the LED strips consume a lot less power with nearly unnoticeable drop in light intensity. Adding a Light dependent resistor as sensor ensures it only activates at low light levels, like at night.

Smart room LED lighting

Smart ceiling LED lighting

Smart ceiling lighting with RGB LED strips.

Smart bed lighting

Smart bed lighting

Smart under bed lighting using LDR, PIR and PWM driven LED strip.

Smart Staircase lighting

Staircase lighting

Same technology for the staircase lighting.

LED Lighting

LED Lighting

Floor based decor LED lighting using PWN.

Arduino with PIR

Arduino with PIR

Arduino on euroboard with the passive infrared sensor, testing the 12 to 5 volt buck PSU..

PIR PWM module

Smart PIR PWM module

Making multiple units as they are needed in more places in the home.

Power FET and setting

Power FET and calibration

Power field effect transistor used to pulse the LED strip at low frequency.

Testing with a LED strip

Testing with a LED strip

Initial testing with a LED strip on the headboard only.

How the smart PWM LED lighting works

NOTE: During testing using variable pulse width modulation to turn the LEd strips on and off at frequency of 100Hz I noticed that at 80 percent duty cycle the power consumption dropped by 33% while the light intensity dropped by 5%. That is a major power saving! Tip for anyone running LEDs on DC, place a PWM running at a ratio of 80% on and 20% off and you will save a load on current used. An additional gain is that there is no heat generated, again a saving of waisted energy.

  • Two sensors are used: a PIR (passive infrared sensor) to sense human heat movement and a LDR (light dependent resistor) to sense ambient surrounding light
  • An Arduino Nano uses the sensors to determine low light levels, and if this is the case it enables the PIR as trigger for the microprocessor the manage the LEDs.
  • If the PIR detects a moving heat signature it triggers the microprocessor, it then looks at the current state of current operation.
  • If it is dormant it starts a slow fade in loop to bring the LEDs on. It also looks at the level of the LDR to determine what the maximum light level should be.
  • If it is already on and at max light level, it keeps the LEDs on and resets the timer to fade out the LEDs.
  • If it is on and the (90 second) sleep timer triggers, it will gradually fade out the LEDs until they are off and wait for the PIR to trigger if the ambient light levels are low.

Convenient smart lighting that saves energy in more ways than one.

Hydroponics - Growing plants without soil

Recent years have seen small microcontrollers become very energy efficient and very powerful. This is another challenge in the make, keeping plants happy and productive with the use of cost effective low power smart IoT.