Archive for July, 2014

Program an Arduino UNO or Nano in Ladder Logic

SoapBox Snap version 2014.07.06 has just been released! You can download it from over at the SoapBox Snap Project Page.

This version adds an Arduino runtime, meaning you can now download SoapBox Snap ladder logic programs to an Arduino and use your Arduino like a PLC. Currently it’s compatible with the Arduino UNO and Nano boards (R3). The SoapBox Snap download includes a firmware sketch (written in C++) which you’ll have to upload to the Arduino in the normal way.

To get you started, I’ve written a complete SoapBox Snap Arduino Tutorial.

As usual, SoapBox Snap, and the SoapBox Snap Arduino Runtime code, is released as open source.

Note that this version of SoapBox Snap no longer has the Game Controllers module in it (due to installer issues). That means the original soft runtime won’t support joysticks and other game controllers.

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Ladder Logic on an Arduino UNO – a Sneak Peek

Here’s a sneak peek of the next SoapBox Automation project: adding an Arduino runtime for SoapBox Snap. That means you can use an Arduino just like a PLC, including forcing I/O and online debugging. Here’s a picture of the ladder diagram while online with the Arduino:

Arduino UNO Ladder

…and here’s the Arduino test circuit:

Arduino UNO Running Ladder

The initial version will have support for the UNO (R3) and the Nano (R3) versions of the Arduino boards. The ladder logic is stored in the internal EEPROM of the chip.

As always, all of the source code, including the Arduino sketch that allows it to act like a PLC, will be released as open source under a GPLv3 license. More will be coming soon.

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