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$5,670 pledged of $4,000 goal
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All or nothing. This project will only be funded if it reaches its goal by .

$5,670 pledged of $4,000 goal
backers

All or nothing. This project will only be funded if it reaches its goal by .

What is a prototype?

A prototype is a preliminary model of something. Projects that offer physical products need to show backers documentation of a working prototype. This gallery features photos, videos, and other visual documentation that will give backers a sense of what’s been accomplished so far and what’s left to do. Though the development process can vary for each project, these are the stages we typically see:

Proof of Concept

Explorations that test ideas and functionality.

Functional Prototype

Demonstrates the functionality of the final product, but looks different.

Appearance Prototype

Looks like the final product, but is not functional.

Design Prototype

Appearance and function match the final product, but is made with different manufacturing methods.

Production Prototype

Appearance, function, and manufacturing methods match the final product.

0950b34ef9aac06c2811ee9bd90d98d9 original

Prototype Gallery

These photos and videos provide a detailed look at this project’s development.

About

This project is a spin-off of our previously funded 

Mega-IO Expansion Card for Raspberry Pi. 

https://www.facebook.com/RaspberryPiMegaIO

Many of our backers, and subsequently web site customers, did not need the full functionality or the Mega-IO card, but only the relays. 

There are may ways to add relays to Raspberry Pi. You can add a 16-relay board controllable through the GPIO interface, but this will use up most of the IO pins. If you need more relays, you need to use another Raspberry Pi. The end result is a multitude of wires that are hard to control.

So we proceeded to cut the cost of the Mega-IO card by removing all the IO functions. 

Mega-IO Block Diagram
Mega-IO Block Diagram

We removed the processor, all the opto-couplers, all the analog circuitry and the right angle connector, and we ended up with a card costing 40% less:

8-Relay Card Block Diagram
8-Relay Card Block Diagram

We build the prototypes and debugged and tested the hardware. All the command line functions can be downloaded from GITHUB.

TYPICAL APPLICATION: 8 to 64 ZONE SMART SPRINKLER CONTROLLER

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An irrigation controller is "smart" if it can take watering decisions based on weather forecasts. You can buy one for $10 to $30 per zone, or you can build it yourself for under $5 per zone. 

HARDWARE COMPONENTS

The links below are only examples, there are many other sources on the net where you can purchase these components.

1. Raspberry Pi 2/3/Zero.  The cheapest way to go is the Raspberry Zero. If you buy the $5 version you will need to purchase a 40 pin header ($1) and and USB to Ethernet adapter ($2).

2. 8GB SD Card. ($5).

3. 5V Power Supply ($1.5) for Raspberry Pi and 8-Relay Card. 

4. 24V Transformer. You can buy this at your local hardware store as well.

5. 8-Relay Card (Please support this project!)

SOFTWARE INSTALLATION

Download SD Card software for Raspberry Pi HERE

Connect your Raspberry Pi to your local network. Load the address of your router (something like 192.168.0.1), into your browser, look for the Local Client Table and find the address of your Raspberry Pi. (something like 192.168.0.x). Point your browser to this address and you will see the start-up page of your sprinkler controller: 

8-64 Zone Irrigation Controller using Raspberry Pi
8-64 Zone Irrigation Controller using Raspberry Pi

Click on the SETTINGS icon in the upper right corner:

Irrigation Controller Settings
Irrigation Controller Settings

The SETTINGS page checks how many 8-Relay cards are installed. Make sure the card Jumpers are set as indicated, else the cards will not be found. Select the first card from the Card# column and give your Irrigation Zones some meaningful names.

Enter your location if you wish to use the Auto Rain Delay. Select the rain limit (10mm = 10 liters per square meter). The system will shut off when the forecast calls for more rain than your preset limit. The forecast is using the API interface from https://openweathermap.org/

Save your settings and close the window. The zone names will be transferred to the main screen:

8-64 Zone Irrigation Controller using Raspberry Pi
8-64 Zone Irrigation Controller using Raspberry Pi

Click on a zone name to turn on the corresponding relay. Click the zone name again to turn the relay off. Type the run time of each zone, or use the arrows to select. Click on the desired days when your system will run. Set the START TIME and press SUBMIT. All the changes will be saved into the database. 

Check this LIVE DEMO

If you set the RUN TIME for all the zones to 1 minute, and the START TIME to the current time, you will see the relays on your 8-Relay card turning on and off in sequence, at 1 minute interval. You are now ready to wire your valves.

VALVE WIRING

Install your hardware in a location where you can bring the wires from all your irrigation valves. Use the Common and Normal Open contacts of the relays to control the 24V power applied to the valves. 

Irrigation Valves Wiring
Irrigation Valves Wiring

Rather than bringing the wires from all the valves directly to the relays, we suggest to use a terminal block to "tame" all the valve wires. Use short wires from the terminal block to the relay connectors on the 8-relay card.

Irrigation Valves Wiring with Terminal Block
Irrigation Valves Wiring with Terminal Block

Your Sprinkler Controller is now ready. You can now control your irrigation system from anywhere on the net with just a few mouse clicks.

YOUTUBE.COM

SEQUENTMICROSYSTEMS.COM

TWITTER.COM

FACEBOOK.COM

Risks and challenges

The only risk this project faces is that nobody wants it. The prototypes are fully tested and the Linux command line software is working. Python drivers are tested and can be downloaded from GITHUB. If we have enough demand we will develop CODESYS and Windows drivers.

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    Just tell us how many 8-relay boards you need and we'll create a custom reward

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    Raspberry Pi 8-Relay Card

    Add 8 relays to your Raspberry Pi at the lowest possible cost. Fully tested and with all the installation hardware included. Save 33% of the final retail price.

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    Raspberry Pi 8-Relay Card

    Add up 8 relays to Raspberry Pi for your Home Automation projects. Stackable to eight levels - up to 64 relays in one compact package. Save 25% of the retail price.

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    Raspberry Pi 8-Relay Card - GET IT FAST!

    One hundred first-item boards ready to ship.
    Each board is fully tested and comes with all the installation hardware. Shipping on early July from California.

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    8-Ralay Card + Raspberry Pi Break-out

    Add 8 relays to your Raspberry Pi at the lowest possible cost. Save 33% of the final retail price. Includes break-out card for Raspberry Pi

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    • Break-out Card for Raspberry Pi, 20% off MRSP, shipping included
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    Stack of 2 8-Relay Cards

    Add 16 relays to your Raspberry Pi at the lowest possible cost. Fully tested and with all the installation hardware included.

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    Stack of 4 8-Relay Cards

    Add 32 relays to your Raspberry Pi at the lowest possible cost. Fully tested and with all the installation hardware included.

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    Stack of 4 8-Relay Cards- GET IT FAST!

    We reserved 100 boards for this reward. Each board is fully tested and with all the necessary hardware. Free shipping to US backers! Shipping on early July from California.

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