Light up your micro:bit projects with the ZIP Halo

Latest product from Kitronik enables micro:bit based electronics projects to shine bright with 16,777,216 output colours  

As the dark nights approach Kitronik, a leading developer of electronic projects kits and learning resources for schools, makers and coders, has launched its latest micro:bit compatible product – The ZIP Halo.

The ZIP Halo will enable micro:bit users to add a range of light effects to their projects, helping students and home users to light up their creativity and develop their coding skills. It is the first in a range of ‘Halo’ bolt on boards to be released by Kitronik, all of which will help to expand the use of the micro:bit and the creation of unique and innovative projects.

The ZIP Halo bolt on board can be used in a range of design projects involving electronics, helping to ensure the micro:bit is used across STEM subjects. From safety projects to light up pedestrians and cyclists on dark nights, to customising fashion accessories, embellishing home furnishings or even making personalised decorations for Christmas, there’s plenty of opportunity for student’s creativity and individuality to shine through!

The device has wide ranging applications within e-textiles. For instance, students could add lights to their bags using the ZIP Halo to ensure they are visible when walking home during the winter months.

ZIP Halo also has huge potential for use within cycling safety. Micro:bit users can use the ZIP Halo to illuminate their cycling clothing and even use it as front and rear cycling lights given the brightness of the ZIP LEDs.

Its versatility is made possible by the fact that the ZIP Halo powers the micro:bit, meaning that two power sources are not required.

The ZIP Halo has 24 ZIP LEDs, which are individually addressable full colour LEDs. This means that each LED can display a huge spectrum of colours, allowing dazzling colourful effects to be achieved. All LEDs are connected using the same three wire bus. Each LED can produce a full spectrum of colours independent to all of the other LEDs on the bus and can achieve 256 levels of brightness, resulting in 16,777,216 possible output colours. An expansion connector allows additional ZIP LEDs to be connected to produce longer strips or rings, that can all be controlled by the ZIP Halo.

Features of The ZIP Halo include:

  • 24 individually addressable ZIP LEDs
  • Connection points for micro:bit pins P1 and P2
  • Supply voltage: 3.5V to 5V
  • Bolts directly onto the micro:bit using five secure and robust bolts
  • The board also has extension connector pads, allowing more ZIP LEDs to be attached

Dimensions:

  • Diameter: 80mm
  • Height: 3.2mm
  • Height with micro:bit: 10mm
  • PCB Thickness: 1.5mm

Always eager to encourage sharing of ideas, Kitronik would love makers to inspire others by sharing their use of the ZIP Halo on Twitter by mentioning @Kitronik in their tweets.

Commenting on Halo, Kitronik co-founder Kevin Spurr said: “We’ve developed the ZIP Halo to provide a stable and responsive light source which can be integrated into an extensive range of projects. We hope the ZIP Halo will inspire makers into applying and developing their coding skills because the range of lighting effects that it produces are so versatile.”

“With all the resources we are creating, the board will be a great asset for teachers, students and hobbyists and, hopefully, result in a range of innovative projects being created. We look forward to seeing them on Twitter!”

As with all Kitronik products, comprehensive guidance is available. The User Guide is available to download here and the data sheet is available to download here.

Prices and stockists

The ZIP Halo will be priced at £11.50 excluding VAT and is available to order via the Kitronik website here. The product is also available worldwide through Kitronik’s distributor network. Stockists will include:

  • Small Devices – Australia
  • Code Electronics – Australia
  • Switch Science – Japan
  • Pod consult – Denmark
  • Pimoroni – UK
  • MCM – US
  • Hands on Science – Sweden
  • Witold Rugowski – Poland
  • CLASSROOM – Hong Kong
  • ETC – Hong Kong

www.kitronik.co.uk

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