This tutorial will cover those wonderful blinky things, LEDs. We’ve already talked and played with LEDs in Lesson #3 where we blinked some LEDs on and off, and also played with multi-colored LEDs to make a color-changing glowing orb. If you haven’t checked out that lesson yet, please do and go through the whole thing, OK? That way we can start off with some experience.
We’ll use this tutorial to re-visit LEDs in a little more detail. We’re going to cover how to calculate the current going through an LED and in the mean time introduce two important laws of electronics, Kirchhoff’s Voltage Law and Ohm’s Law. We’ll begin by performing experiments that will demonstrate how voltage and resistance affects current and then prove those results with a little math.
There’s no coding involved in this exercise, and although we use an Arduino in the images, you don’t need one to follow along. We do suggest some other kind of power supply so you can try out the experiments, but you can use even batteries in a battery holder!
Make a robot friend with Adafruit’s CRICKIT – A Creative Robotics & Interactive Construction Kit. It’s an add-on to our popular Circuit Playground Express, FEATHER and other platforms to make and program robots with CircuitPython, MakeCode, and Arduino. Start controlling motors, servos, solenoids. You also get signal pins, capacitive touch sensors, a NeoPixel driver and amplified speaker output. It complements & extends your boards so you can still use all the goodies on the microcontroller, now you have a robotics playground as well.