Scientific applications

Scientific applications

This is the most suitable to write blog posts that cover research and scientific instruments. Of course we always talk of accomplishments by Maker, on a budget. Although, in some cases, touching topics of great science, and with good results.

To deepen these topics please consult also the site Physics Open Lab

  1. Livio says:

    All the theremino apps are “portable”, they not require installation. You unzip them in some folder and start the exe file.

    To use our applications you need a PC with a true Windows 10. I think that our applications will not work on the special, IOT reduced, Windows 10 of the Raspberry. So I suggest tu use a Z85 mini PC instead.

  2. Giacomo says:

    Dear, for the request that I have to make, I don't know if this is the right part of the blog. Eventually move it where you see fit. I just wanted to ask you if you have any experience with any CO2 sensors. And if so, what could you advise me. Thank you

    • Livio says:

      The blog part is quite right. And I also have very good news about CO2 sensors, we have good experience on gas sensors.

      Initially for the CO2 we tested the MQ135 which says in the characteristics: NH3,NOx, alcohol, Benzene, smoke,CO2 ,etc

      But the MQ135 doesn't work, when you add CO2 its signal decreases instead of increasing. It is also much more sensitive to any other gas than to CO2, so you don't measure CO2 at all. As also confirmed by this article:

      Then we tried other similar ones but none of them work. And finally we realized that for CO2 we need NDIR sensors:

      Fortunately, there are inexpensive ones, they are called WINSEN MH-Z19B, start buying two or three (better to have at least two because like all these “so” cheap it happens every now and then to find one that doesn't work).

      Then when it is time to connect them contact us again that we can also give you the firmware we made for Arduino (so you will also need an Arduino Nano, and possibly with CH340 that are better)

      Finally, we can also give you software to run on your PC to see the variations graphically.

      • Giacomo says:

        Ok. As soon as I have any, I will contact you. Just out of curiosity (if it's not too complicated to explain): why you need Arduino Nano and not the Master? Thank you

        • Livio says:

          The Master can read any type of analog sensor but cannot communicate with digital sensors unless the firmware is reprogrammed and then the HAL application is modified to accept the data of that sensor as well. Doing all this would require weeks of work for us who know him well and maybe a few months for those who don't know him.

          Plus there are hundreds of digital sensors, all different, what if we started adding pieces of firmware to the master for each sensor, soon there would be no place in his eeprom memory anymore.

          And finally with each modification the Master should change version, become V6, V7 etc.… and then we should post that the master's version has changed, prepare the download for the new firmware and force everyone to buy a PicKit2 to program it.

          So in these cases it is better to use an Arduino Nano that is programmed without a programmer. The Nano is definitely inferior to the Master for analog sensors but it is excellent for reading digital sensors. It is connected via USB to the ArduHAL application which is practically identical to the HAL and can also coexist and communicate with the Masters through the Slots, so all the knowledge you have accumulated about our system will remain the same.

          The dwarf (with CH340) it is small and inexpensive and also resembles a Master in size, so you will feel like you have another Master connected to the HAL

          More information here:

  3. Mario says:

    Hello everyone!
    For laboratory needs I needed another oscilloscope for my work, something without great pretensions, but that it would fulfill its task.
    One can easily imagine the economic commitment resulting from the purchase of a new instrument that is considered useful and also economic..
    There are many “Chinoiserie” on sale, But my experience on them has never been so exciting, perchè (as it happens in all laboratories) Things can break, and then you stay immediately “on foot”.
    I remembered the talented Livio and the site Theremino where I had glimpsed a Windows application called DAA. And’ an oscilloscope “synthetic” on a PC that works using a modified external USB box. This box is called CM6206 and is sold almost everywhere at a very low cost (approx. 15€).
    I purchased it and modified it as indicated in the DAA_V4_InputDevices_ITA file included in the program.
    I was really amazed by the versatility of the program that I RECOMMEND TO EVERYONE, as it is very useful as “Extra tool”, that as you know, It never hurts.
    This software made for FREE by the staff Theremino, has truly EXCEPTIONAL performance !!!
    Recommend to anyone who feels the need, to try it also because it already works alone as it is!!!
    One of the features that amazed me the most (for me who works with predominantly slow digital signals) is the ROLL function of the time base, which is automatically activated already at 50ms/div, Function that not in all professional and branded tools, is present.
    E.g.. my tektronix THS720 this function activates (on request from 200ms/div down).
    I have to give a big THANK YOU to LIVIO and the staff for their work which is a blessing for anyone who knows them.!
    Like everything, I must say that the program could be improved in some respects:
    1) When the oscilloscope tips are “floating” (that is, they do not touch anything) There is a “offset” approx. 1.3V in DC due to the external box. Unfortunately it is intrinsic in the CM6206 .
    It shouldn't be difficult, via software acting on the sources on the DAA program, Think, make sure that this “offset” is reduced to zero either manually or automatically when the CALIBRATE button is pressed – ZERO.
    2) If the CM6206 box is detached while running the DAA program, the same program freezes and does not close easily.
    3) A few times I have verified that activating the INPUT key – ON only activates for a few moments. I have to close and reopen the program more than once for it to activate.
    4) METER measurements on channels 1 and 2 are not displayed simultaneously on the display.
    5) It would be nice to have a menu option to see on one page all the settings that are not directly visible, as which input is active, what output, where the setup files are stored, etc.
    In fact, in all laptops there is already an internal sound card. You have to remember to activate the external one CM6206 because otherwise it seems that it no longer works.
    6) I would have preferred a step-by-step calibration procedure because I did not find it very intuitive.
    However, I must say that now this tool “extra” is fully part of my repair workshop. I have to give a big THANK YOU to Livio and all the staff for this intellectual and material effort they make and a DONATION is fully deserved for them!
    Thanks guys !!!
    Mario di Stefano

  4. Livio says:

    The Calibrate ZERO button is used to eliminate the offset of the sound card.
    And also some of the other things you wrote are solvable by carefully reading the HELP file
    Also be careful to use the latest version of DAA that is on the site.

    Some flaws (such as the crash that occurs if you disconnect the sound card during operation and also other malfunctions) Unfortunately they depend on the audio drivers and we can not do anything about it.

    This program is already more robust than many others. Everyone occasionally “impale” And even Windows sometimes does. I don't think we'll be able to do better than it is now., There are decades of work in there…

  5. Livio says:

    We thank Dr. Davi Franco Rêgo who wrote to us:

    I'm currently managing a MakerSpace and I found the website Theremino a couple of weeks ago. It gave a big boost to an ongoing project that some of my students are working on.. The project is a do-it-yourself spectrometer, so well documented on your website! And here is the link to a video they just made using the provided software., although the wavelength is a bit’ wrong… They may have calibrated a little poorly.
    Thank you for giving us all this!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.