Know About STM32F303VCT6 DISCOVERY Board..!

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Discovery board…So till now, we have just learned about the Embedded System and Why we use Rust with Embedded Development if you haven’t read that blog then go ahead and click this link.

Now, let us move to the second -> part, blog or session, whatever ..!!

After that let’s talk in detail about a micro-controller.

What is a Micro-controller ??


A micro-controller is considered a small computer or semi-computer that is used to perform some specific task of an embedded system. It is present on a single metal-oxide-semiconductor integrated circuit chip as shown below.

An example of Micro-controller

micro-controller

So we are working on this particular micro-controller. STM32F303VCT6 DISCOVERY Board commonly known as F3.


Some of the components present on the Discovery Board are:

  • A micro-controller
  • A number of LED’s, including the eight aligned in a “compass” formation
  • Two buttons
  • Two USB ports
  • An Accelerometer
  • A Magnetometer
  • A Gyroscope

I2C Busses are uses to access all the components present in the microcontroller. All these rays are representing the I2C Bus connecting the micro-controller to different components of the Discovery board.
i2c

The most important part of the Board is the micro-controller also know as MCU.

mcu
  1. Which is present at the center of the board in black color in square shape (See at center in picture 1).
  2. This is the one that basically runs the code.
  3. When you say about programming a board then it means programming the MCU.

Let’s discuss more about this important part of the DISCOVERY BOARD

Our MCU is surrounded by 100 tiny metal pins. These pins are connected to traces, the little “roads” that act as the wires connecting components on the board.

The MCU can dynamically alter the electrical properties of the pins. This works similar to a light switch altering how electrical current flows through a circuit. By enabling or disabling electrical current to flow through a specific pin, an LED attached to that pin (via the traces) can be turned on and off.


What this micro-controller represents ??

  • The M32 represents that this is an Arm®-based 32-bit micro-controller.
  • The F3 represents that the MCU is from ST’s “STM32F3” series. This is a series of MCUs based on the Cortex®-M4 processor design.
  • The remainder of the part number goes into more details about things like extra features and RAM size, which at this point we’re less concerned about.

So that’s enough about the Central part. Now let’s discuss some more components of the Board.


** accelerometer
accelo

An accelerometer is a tool that measures proper acceleration. Proper acceleration is the acceleration (the rate of change of velocity) of a body in its instantaneous rest frame; this is different from coordinate acceleration, which is acceleration in a fixed coordinate system.

For instance, an accelerometer at rest on the surface of the Earth will measure an acceleration due to Earth’s gravity, straight upwards(by definition). By contrast, an accelerometer in free fall (falling toward the center of the Earth at a rate of about 9.81 m/s2) will measure zero.

Board is using the accelerometer by moving and changing the direction.


**magnetometer

magno

A magnetometer is a device that measures magnetic field or magnetic dipole moment. For instance, magnetometers measure the direction, strength, or relative change of a magnetic field at a particular location.

Therefore compass is one such device, one that measures the direction of an ambient magnetic field, in this case, the Earth’s magnetic field.

##By using 8 lead in the board we construct the compass inside the micro-controller and using that we measure the direction and the magnitude of the magnetic field.


**gyroscope

gyro

Gyroscopes, or gyros, are devices that measure or maintain rotational motion. MEMS (microelectromechanical system) gyros are small, inexpensive sensors that measure angular velocity. The units of angular velocity are measure in degrees per second (°/s) or revolutions per second (RPS). Angular velocity is simply a measurement of the speed of rotation.
Gyros, similar to the one above, can be used to determine the orientation and are found in most autonomous navigation systems. For example, if you want to balance a robot, you can use it to measure rotation from the balanced position and send corrections to a motor.


USB ports

These are uses to connect the hardware with the system or transferring data within the system to a micro-controller or micro-controller to the system.


Now let us know some basic internal working of the micro-controller. where code goes? How it is connected internally??

internal working

FLASH IT Flash means moving the program to micro-controller memory.

And now the program executes every time the micro-controller gets on.

So there are two micro-controller

  1. ST-LINK
  2. target Micro-controller(STM32F303)

Where st-link uses for programmer/debug where the written program goes.

ST-LINK micro-controller is linked to STM32F303 micro-controller and both are connected using an interface known as SWD Serial Wire Debug.

 USB => ST-LINK => STM32F303

****You can purchase this board from “big” electronics suppliers sites.****

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Written by 

Nitin is a Software Consultant, with experience of more than 7 months. He works on Rust Programming Language and Embedded Development using Rust. He is also fond of Java Programming & Artificial Intelligence. Apart from that, his hobbies are Watching Netflix, Reading, Singing & Writing.

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