everhack Stuff I've been messing with, or just thinking about.


AVR RFID reader part 1

I've been taking a break from Cricut coding to do some more work on the RFID stuff.

I decided that before I try to fix my (not working) AVR-RFID card, I should probably have my own reader. And why buy a reader when I really want to understand how it all works?

I'm following the spirit of the instructions posted at this forum by Scanlime (http://forums.parallax.com/showthread.php?105889-World-s-simplest-RFID-reader). I have two (real & working) sample cards of the right type to use as guinea pigs.

Instead of a propeller, I'm using a Teensy 2.0 AVR32U4 in "phase & frequency correct" pwm mode, using the dead time generator to create a 125khz differential signal between pins 11 & 12. Since 11 also happens to be the Teensy's LED pin, it also ends up pulsing brightly at 125khz.

The Teensy is a really great little device that I found on the hack shelf at the ATX Hackerspace, it's very compact with built-in high speed usb2, based on the ATMEGA32U4. (datasheet )

I have not yet implemented the detector circuit (that's next).

Following scanlime's directions, I wound 30 or so turns of #26 magnet wire around a spray painted wooden block" (the green wire from the Radio Shack magnet wire assortment); then a 1nf capacitor in series to the AVR's output pins, running the program below, and finally the 'scope probe up to the L/C junction to see what was up.

Good news, it was oscillating at 125khz, but the wave was not smooth, more rounded with some dips in the curve.

(no screenshot of the funky waveform, sorry)

I swapped out the capacitor a few times on my breadboard and eventually settled on 3.2nf giving the most "wavelike" curve I could manage (as seen above). 21.8v peak to peak Im pretty sure not 218.. The shape of the waveform looks to me like I may need just a little more capacitance to be quite right, but im hopeful that it wont really matter anyway.

I'll get an inductance meter reading on the reader antenna next Monday night just for curiosity sake.

(sorry no photo of the antenna yet)

Here is my current arduino code for the 125khz differential oscillator. There's not much there but those register settings are so crucial to getting it all working! I really need to learn how to do in-circuit debugging.

#include <avr/interrupt.h>
#include <avr/io.h>

void setup()
pinMode(11, OUTPUT);
pinMode(12, OUTPUT);

// phase & frequency correct pwm mode 9

// PWM4A enables PWM mode based on comparator OCR4A
TCCR4C = _BV(PWM4D) | _BV(COM4D0);

// no prescaler
TCCR4B = _BV(CS40);
// enable dead time
TCCR4D = _BV(WGM40);

// 1024 prescaler
//TCCR1B = _BV(WGM13) | _BV(CS12) | _BV(CS10);

// 125k would be no prescaler, period = 128

OCR4C = 128;
OCR4D = 64;


void loop()


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