Exciting XBees Series 2 - July 24th, 2011

Veteran wireless teachers including the author of Building Wireless Sensor Networks will lead you through the basics of radio mesh networking, using powerful XBee Series 2 ZB radios. The class begins with an introduction to all the required components, serial terminals, AT commands and the basics of mesh networking. The first project will be a Basic Chat session that demonstrates how to configure and connect coordinator and router ZigBee radios together. We'll follow that with a simple sensor project, using the embedded I/O features of the XBee radio create a remote Arduino sensor. Finally we'll develop a full Processing-based wireless simple sensor network using ZigBee radio connections to collect temperature data from numerous remotely-placed sensors.

This class is one of a two part series on building wireless sensor networks, if you're interested in learning about creating point-to-point networks using Series 1 XBee radios, check out the first class in the series: Exciting XBees Series 1

Concepts covered in this class: During this class we will talk about radio protocols, PAN IDs, API mode, I/O features, power management, hexadecimals, ZigBee network topologies and data while having plenty of fun.

**Materials Included in this class: **

  • 2 XBee Series 2ZB radios
  • XBee USB Serial adapter
  • 6 ft. USB Mini-B Cable
  • 2 Clear, Self-Adhesive Breadboards
  • Bag of LEDs
  • 2 AA batteries/battery holder with cover and switch
  • Mini Photocell
  • Temperature Sensor
  • 2 XBee Module Breakout Boards

**Prerequisites: **Prior experience with basic electronics and physical computing is helpful but adventurous beginners are welcome.

**Note: **Please install the Arduino software on your computer before the class. Click here for instructions on installing the Arduino software.
Also, please install CoolTerm on your computer before the class. Click here for CoolTerm download. If you are a windows user then you will also need to install X-CTU. Click here for X-CTU download.
Finally you will also need the FTDI chip driver for use with our XBee Explorer. Click here for FTDI chip driver download.

What to bring: Students are asked to provide their own laptop and Arduino board and should bring both along with them. Arduino boards can be purchased separately before the class if needed.

Date: Sunday, July 24th 2011
Time: 1 pm - 6 pm (Please eat lunch before hand)
Location: **SparkFun
Rob Faludi, Tim, Ben & Lindsay



Looking for answers to technical questions?

We welcome your comments and suggestions below. However, if you are looking for solutions to technical questions please see our Technical Assistance page.

  • Valkyrie / about 12 years ago / 2

    Someone already said this on the Day 1 class, but I figured I'd repeat it because YESPLZ:
    I would happily, happily pay a fee to be able to take this class online. I know it'd be video, so there wouldn't be someone right there to tell me what I'm doing wrong, but it's hard to learn this stuff from books and I can't get to SparkFun every time I want to take a class. Pleasepleaseplease consider an online version of the classes you offer, for those of us not lucky enough to be located near SparkFun?

    • or selling video lectures is another option right,

    • We are fully aware of everyone's desire to take our classes online. There are numerous logistical issues to be figured out and our Education Department is very new and we're doing what we can to work out the kinks. As of right now, we don't have the capability but are working towards it and will most likely offer than in the future.

  • ryanlipski / about 12 years ago / 1

    In! Gotta rep Wisconsin!

  • AnthonyZ / about 12 years ago / 1

    I'm gonna knock over a liquor store 'cause I really, really want to attend but, well, my industry (home automation) is suffering bad through this recession and I am currently too poor.

  • IF someone here is taking the class please upload a tutorial on youtube, i shall be thankful :)

  • What type of antennae will the Xbee's have?

  • manoweb / about 12 years ago / 1

    If one takes class one the prev day, and already has the material, can he get a "discount" and use the previous day's hardware?

    • I would assume not, because day one uses different hardware to day two.

      • ryanlipski / about 12 years ago / 1

        the shield, usb adapter, xbee breakouts are - the first two have a retail of ~$50 alone.

  • mbrown9412 / about 12 years ago / 1

    is it suggested to take series one prior to series two? would it be better to take one before two? or does it not matter? Because I could make the series two one, but i'm not sure about the first one

    • faludi / about 12 years ago / 1

      It does not matter. The classes are independent so you could take both together or either one alone. The class design takes this into account. Basics are reviewed at the beginning of the second class to be sure everyone is on the same page. From there, the projects we do will be different from day one so things will stay interesting all the way through.

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