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Easily add up to 8x 5V analog sensors and 4x I2C devices to the Raspberry Pi. Form fitted for the Pi Zero but works with all models
Easily add up to 8x 5V analog sensors and 4x I2C devices to the Raspberry Pi. Form fitted for the Pi Zero but works with all models.
Easily add up to 8x 5V analog sensors and 4x I2C devices to the Raspberry Pi. Form fitted for the Pi Zero but works with all models.
188 backers pledged CA$ 7,228 to help bring this project to life.

About this project

PiShield: Sensor Interface board for Raspberry Pi project video thumbnail
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PiShield: Sensor Interface board for Raspberry Pi

CA$ 7,228

188

The PiShield Board connected to a Raspberry Pi Zero
The PiShield Board connected to a Raspberry Pi Zero

The Raspberry Pi is a great platform for building all sorts of wonderful hardware and software projects. With an amazing foundation and community behind it, it has become the worlds most popular Single Board Computing platform.

Infusion Systems, the creator of I-CubeX sensors, have been supplying sensing solutions for interactive environments for more than 20 years. 

The Problem

Out of the box, Raspberry Pi boards do not have an onboard Analog to Digital Converter (ADC). This means that you will need additional hardware for many sensors. Additionally, the pins on the Pi are not 5V tolerant, so using 5V sensors and devices could potentially not work and damage the board! We would like to use I-CubeX and other sensors with the Pi, thereby increasing the creative capabilities of the system.

The Solution

We have created an add-on, the PiShield, for the Raspberry Pi that allows plug and play support for analog as well as digital I2C I-CubeX sensors operating at 5V. Additionally, PiShield will allow you to use any analog and I2C device that operates at 5 volts.

PiShield on a Raspberry Pi Model 2B
PiShield on a Raspberry Pi Model 2B

Open Source

The PiShield, from the hardware specifications to every piece of software that runs on it, is completely open source. Schematics and pinouts are available for you to use your own sensors in addition to any I-CubeX sensors, or to even re-make the PiShield from scratch - although we'd like to save you a lot of time and $$ by providing you with a plug and play solution! The instructions for setting up the software environment are available, as well as tutorials for interfacing with various software environments.

For a full list of tutorials and other documentation, check out the index here.

What Can You Do With it?

With the addition of sensors and output devices, you can greatly extend the application of the Raspberry Pi. Here are some examples along with tutorials:

Philips HUE Light controller:


Making a custom X-Y controller using Python to control Minecraft:

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 Interface with LCD and OLED displays:

node-red sensor dashboard:


... And much more!!

Key Features

- Adds missing A-to-D functionality to your RPi
- Provides convenient, neat, and reliable connections between your sensors and the RPi - no messy wires on a breadboard!

Technical Specs

- Board dimensions: 30 mm x 65 mm (same as Pi Zero)
- Matches all 4x mounting holes of Pi Zero, 2x holes for the A+, B+, 2B, and 3B
- Weight: ~15 g
- Operating Voltage: 5V powered, with 3.3V connections to RPi GPIO pins
- Board compatibility: RPi Model A/A+, B/B+, 2B, 3B, zero
- A-to-D circuitry: MCP3008 connected to SPI Port 0
- For sensor interface pinouts and board schematics, click here

Rewards:

Help us bring this project to reality and get the following rewards for your support. For more details of each reward item, please visit this page

  • $10 PiShield Super Early Bird (limited): Get the PiShield at half the regular price!
  • $15 PiShield Early Bird (limited): Get the PiShield at a reduced price!
  • $20 PiShield: Get the PiShield at the regular price
  • $25 PiShield + SD Card Get the PiShield board + pre-loaded 8GB SD card
  • (NEW Oct 6th) $35 PiShield Two Pack: Get two PiShield boards!
  • $50 PiShield + SD Card + DIY Sensor Pack (limited): Same as above reward (PiShield + SD Card), plus the following DIY modules:
    - Potentiometer
    - Photodiode
    - Red Laser 
    - Capacitive Touch
    - IR Distance
    - DIY cable assembly for each module (6x)
    - 1x Sensor Extension cable
  • (NEW Oct 11th) $75 PiShield Five Pack: Get FIVE PiShield boards!
  • (NEW Oct 6th) $100 PiShield + SD Card + DIY Sensor Pack + RPi3:
    - The above reward, plus a Raspberry Pi 3 and power supply!
  • $100 PiShield + SD Card + I-CubeX Sensor Pack (limited):
    - PiShield + SD Card
    Turn v1.4
    - FlashOn v1.0
    - SeeLaser-Red v4.0
    - ReachOn v2.0
    - ReachClose v3.0
    - ExtendCable-05
  • $125 PiShield + SD Card + I-CubeX Sensor Pack + RPi Starter Kit + Pi Zero (limited):The previous reward above, plus:
    - Raspberry Pi Zero board
    - Power supply for the RPi (Rated 5V 2A)
    - USB OTG adapter cable
    - USB WIFI adapter (2.4 GHz 802.11n)
  • (NEW Oct 6th) $150 PiShield + SD Card + I-CubeX Sensor Pack + RPi3:
    - The same PiShield and I-CubeX Sensor pack as above, but with a Raspberry Pi 3 and power supply!

Whats the difference between the I-CubeX Sensors and ones in the DIY kit?

Functionality-wise, they cover identical sensing applications. The main difference is that the I-CubeX sensors are more robust. They use shielded cables to reduce interference and noise, have pre-made connectors, and are protected by packaging that protects the sensor, guards against accidental short-circuits and prevents the breaking of wires. I-CubeX sensors have been developed and refined over more than 20 years and used by thousands of people all over the world. The DIY kit is designed for those looking to save money but willing to do a bit of work putting the sensor wiring and connectors together (all parts are included), resulting in pin-compatible sensors but without the above-mentioned benefits of I-CubeX sensors.

All rewards include free international shipping!

 

 

Risks and challenges

We have spent a lot of time and effort developing the hardware, and making documentation and tutorials on using the PiShield with a variety of platforms and environments. However, we will need your support in order to share the product with a larger audience and extending its potential impact. This is why we are turning to the Kickstarter community for help.

Hardware projects, with their large number of logistical steps from design, prototyping, implementation, sourcing, manufacturing, and transport contain a high amount of risk. Infusion Systems has more than 20 years of experience in this field, and we will do our best to insure this project goes smoothly.

We already have a small batch on hand that have been tested and are ready for delivery through our existing and reliable shipping channels, so the first wave of Super Early Bird shipments should have no problem being sent out right after the campaign ends.

We have made calculated and conservative deadlines for the later batches, and will be maintaining an open communications channel with backers as the orders are being fulfilled.

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Questions about this project? Check out the FAQ

Support this project

  1. Reward no longer available

    Pledge CA$ 10 or more About $8

    Super Early Bird PiShield Board

    Get the PiShield Sensor Interface Board for the Raspberry Pi at a significantly reduced price!

    First batch ready to ship as soon as campaign ends.

    Free worldwide shipping.

    Includes:
    • PiShield Sensor Interface Board
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    Ships to Anywhere in the world
    Reward no longer available 20 backers
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  2. Reward no longer available

    Pledge CA$ 15 or more About $11

    Early Bird PiShield

    Get the PiShield Sensor Interface Board for the Raspberry Pi at a reduced price

    Free worldwide shipping.

    Includes:
    • PiShield Sensor Interface Board
    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Ships to Anywhere in the world
    Reward no longer available 20 backers
    CA$
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  3. Select this reward

    Pledge CA$ 20 or more About $15

    PiShield

    Get the PiShield Sensor Interface Board for the Raspberry Pi at regular price

    Free worldwide shipping.

    Includes:
    • PiShield Sensor Interface Board
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    40 backers
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  4. Select this reward

    Pledge CA$ 25 or more About $19

    PiShield Board + SD Card

    Get the PiShield Sensor Interface Board for the Raspberry Pi at the regular price, plus a preloaded 8GB MicroSD card

    Free Worldwide shipping

    Includes:
    • PiShield Sensor Interface Board
    • Preloaded 8GB MicroSD Card
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    Ships to Anywhere in the world
    23 backers
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  5. Select this reward

    Pledge CA$ 35 or more About $27

    PiShield 2-pack

    Get not one but TWO PiShields, at a reduced price!

    Free worldwide shipping

    Includes:
    • PiShield Sensor Interface Board
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    Ships to Anywhere in the world
    33 backers
    CA$
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  6. Select this reward

    Pledge CA$ 50 or more About $38

    PiShield + DIY Sensor Pack

    Get the PiShield, SD card, as well as a number of DIY sensor modules. Each module comes with wiring that you can hook up yourself to connect with the PiShield.

    Free Worldwide shipping

    Includes:
    • PiShield Sensor Interface Board
    • Preloaded 8GB MicroSD Card
    • Potentiometer
    • Light sensor module
    • Red Laser Module
    • Capacitive Touch Sensor Module
    • IR Distance Sensor Module
    • Hookup wire with connectors for the PiShield
    • Sensor Extension Cable
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    24 backers
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  7. Select this reward

    Pledge CA$ 75 or more About $57

    PiShield 5-pack

    Get not one but FIVE PiShields, at a reduced price!

    Includes:
    • PiShield Sensor Interface Board
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    Ships to Anywhere in the world
    8 backers
    CA$
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  8. Reward no longer available

    Pledge CA$ 100 or more About $76

    PiShield + I-CubeX Sensor Pack

    Get the PiShield, 8GB preloaded SD card along with a sensor package containing a variety of I-CubeX sensors!

    Free Worldwide shipping

    Includes:
    • PiShield Sensor Interface Board
    • I-CubeX Turn Sensor
    • I-CubeX FlashOn Sensor
    • I-CubeX SeeLaser-Red Actuator
    • I-CubeX ReachOn Sensor
    • I-CubeX ReachClose Sensor
    • I-CubeX ExtendCable-05
    Less
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    Reward no longer available 7 backers
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  9. Select this reward

    Pledge CA$ 100 or more About $76

    PiShield + SD + DIY Sensor Pack + Pi3

    Get the PiShield, preloaded 8GB SD card, The DIY sensor pack, a 2A USB Power supply, and a Raspberry Pi 3 with power supply!

    Free worldwide shipping

    Includes:
    • PiShield Sensor Interface Board
    • Preloaded 8GB MicroSD Card
    • Potentiometer
    • Light sensor module
    • Red Laser Module
    • Capacitive Touch Sensor Module
    • Hookup wire with connectors for the PiShield
    • Sensor Extension Cable
    • Raspberry Pi 3
    • 5V 2A power supply
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    1 backer
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  10. Select this reward

    Pledge CA$ 125 or more About $95

    PiShield + Sensor Pack + RPi0 kit

    Get the PiShield, preloaded 8GB SD card, a package containing a variety of I-CubeX sensors, a 2A USB Power supply, SD card preloaded with our configured system image, USB-OTG cable (for the pi-zero), USB Wifi Adapter as well as a Pi Zero!

    Free Worldwide shipping

    Includes:
    • PiShield Sensor Interface Board
    • I-CubeX Turn Sensor
    • I-CubeX FlashOn Sensor
    • I-CubeX SeeLaser-Red Actuator
    • I-CubeX ReachOn Sensor
    • I-CubeX ReachClose Sensor
    • I-CubeX ExtendCable-05
    • Raspberry Pi Zero
    • RPi Starter Pack
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    Ships to Anywhere in the world
    Limited 4 backers
    CA$
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  11. Select this reward

    Pledge CA$ 150 or more About $114

    PiShield + SD + Sensor Pack + Pi3

    Get the PiShield, preloaded 8GB SD card, a package containing a variety of I-CubeX sensors, and a Raspberry Pi 3 with power supply!

    Free worldwide shipping

    Includes:
    • PiShield Sensor Interface Board
    • Preloaded 8GB MicroSD Card
    • I-CubeX Turn Sensor
    • I-CubeX FlashOn Sensor
    • I-CubeX SeeLaser-Red Actuator
    • I-CubeX ReachOn Sensor
    • I-CubeX ReachClose Sensor
    • I-CubeX ExtendCable-05
    • Raspberry Pi 3
    • 5V 2A power supply
    Less
    Estimated delivery
    Ships to Anywhere in the world
    7 backers
    CA$
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Funding period

- (30 days)