FiPy + PyTrack (any extra peripherals available, ex UART + I2C)
Hi, I am thinking to get FiPy + PyTrack for my environmental monitoring project. The features from PyTrack - GPS and accelerometer is quite handy for my application, but, I need extra UART and I2C for my water quality sensors. I have checked on the PyTrack specsheet and the pinout diagram, it seems that there is no way to get these peripherals available from PyTrack expansion board.
- Am I right to say that PyTrack is actually an application board, it is only for specific tracking IoT use case. I can not treat it as an expansion board and connect with my sensors on it?
- For my requirement, what do you suggest if I need the UART + I2C + SD card + LTE + GPS?
- how many UART and I2C ports available on the expansionboard v3.0?
You are indeed correct. Now it is of course possible to manually solder wires to the specified communication ports, as i know they are there, just not exposed. You can check the datasheet of the Fipy for the pins. I know the Pytrack uses UART0 and I2C to communicate, so the other ones are still open. (It is also possible to change the pin functions) https://docs.pycom.io/datasheets/development/fipy/
The Pytrack 2.0 X is a little more flexible with external antenna connector and sensor port, where you can attach additional sensors (like for example a water quality sensor). The sensors will be out soon, but I dont think there is a water quality sensor in the set, so you'll have to think of your own solution there.
@soopieng The original PyTrack GPS doesn't quite have an exemplary track record if I believe the comments around here. The lack of external antenna makes it quite difficult to get a reliable signal quickly. If you still want to use it, you have the external IO header which allows you to connect external devices, with pins linked to the xxPy socket. Not sure that would be enough for your needs, and it requires soldering.
You're probably better off using the expansion board with an external GPS chip. Some chips have an accelerometer or IMU on board if that's useful for you.
But I just discovered there's a Pytrack 2.0 with external antenna connector. But unless you use the new "Pynode sensor connector", you'd have the same limitations in terms of I/O (number of pins and soldering required).