Beginner
10 min

Design a transmitter in a 4-20mA current loop standard with XTR116 and PIC32MZ2048EFM100

Transmit analog signals (like sensor data) over long distances in industrial settings

4-20 mA T Click with Curiosity PIC32 MZ EF

Published Jan 31, 2024

Click board™

4-20 mA T Click

Dev Board

Curiosity PIC32 MZ EF

Compiler

NECTO Studio

MCU

PIC32MZ2048EFM100

Achieve accurate current scaling and output limit functions within the 4-20mA current loop

A

A

Hardware Overview

How does it work?

4-20mA T Click is based on the XTR116, a two-wire current transmitter from Texas Instruments. The XTR116 can provide accurate current scaling and output current limit functions with precision current output converters. It is designed to transmit analog 4 to 20mA signals over an industry-standard current loop. On this board, the output loop current from the XTR116 goes through the bridge rectifier to a VLOOP screw terminal. The diode bridge causes a 1.4V loss in loop supply voltage. Wide loop supply range can be between 7.5V and 36V

with a low span and nonlinearity error. As input offset voltages on the XTR116 are small, this board uses MCP4921, a 12-bit DAC from Microchip with optional 2x buffer output and an SPI interface. Thanks to the XTR116’s integrated power regulator and reference voltage block, the MCP4921 receives its power supply and the reference voltage necessary for correct data conversion. It communicates with the host MCU via three mikroBUS™ SPI lines over an isolator ADuM1411 from Analog Devices, a quad-channel 10Mbps data

rate digital isolator, to make sure higher voltages cannot harm the target microcontroller. This Click board™ can operate with either 3.3V or 5V logic voltage levels selected via an onboard jumper. This way, both 3.3V and 5V capable MCUs can use the communication lines properly. Also, this Click board™ comes equipped with a library containing easy-to-use functions and an example code that can be used as a reference for further development.

4-20 mA T Click hardware overview image

Features overview

Development board

Curiosity PIC32 MZ EF development board is a fully integrated 32-bit development platform featuring the high-performance PIC32MZ EF Series (PIC32MZ2048EFM) that has a 2MB Flash, 512KB RAM, integrated FPU, Crypto accelerator, and excellent connectivity options. It includes an integrated programmer and debugger, requiring no additional hardware. Users can expand

functionality through MIKROE mikroBUS™ Click™ adapter boards, add Ethernet connectivity with the Microchip PHY daughter board, add WiFi connectivity capability using the Microchip expansions boards, and add audio input and output capability with Microchip audio daughter boards. These boards are fully integrated into PIC32’s powerful software framework, MPLAB Harmony,

which provides a flexible and modular interface to application development a rich set of inter-operable software stacks (TCP-IP, USB), and easy-to-use features. The Curiosity PIC32 MZ EF development board offers expansion capabilities making it an excellent choice for a rapid prototyping board in Connectivity, IOT, and general-purpose applications.

Curiosity PIC32MZ EF double side image

Microcontroller Overview

MCU Card / MCU

default

Architecture

PIC32

MCU Memory (KB)

2048

Silicon Vendor

Microchip

Pin count

100

RAM (Bytes)

524288

Used MCU Pins

mikroBUS™ mapper

NC
NC
AN
NC
NC
RST
SPI Chip Select
RPD4
CS
SPI Clock
RPD1
SCK
NC
NC
MISO
SPI Data IN
RPD3
MOSI
Power Supply
3.3V
3.3V
Ground
GND
GND
NC
NC
PWM
NC
NC
INT
NC
NC
TX
NC
NC
RX
NC
NC
SCL
NC
NC
SDA
Power Supply
5V
5V
Ground
GND
GND
1

Take a closer look

Schematic

4-20 mA T Click Schematic schematic

Step by step

Project assembly

Curiosity PIC32MZ EF front image hardware assembly

Start by selecting your development board and Click board™. Begin with the Curiosity PIC32 MZ EF as your development board.

Curiosity PIC32MZ EF front image hardware assembly
GNSS2 Click front image hardware assembly
Prog-cut hardware assembly
GNSS2 Click complete accessories setup image hardware assembly
Curiosity PIC32 MZ EF MB 1 Access - upright/background hardware assembly
Necto image step 2 hardware assembly
Necto image step 3 hardware assembly
Necto image step 4 hardware assembly
Necto image step 5 hardware assembly
Necto image step 6 hardware assembly
Curiosity PIC32 MZ EF MCU Step hardware assembly
Necto No Display image step 8 hardware assembly
Necto image step 9 hardware assembly
Necto image step 10 hardware assembly
Debug Image Necto Step hardware assembly

Track your results in real time

Application Output

After loading the code example, pressing the "DEBUG" button builds and programs it on the selected setup.

Application Output Step 1

After programming is completed, a header with buttons for various actions available in the IDE appears. By clicking the green "PLAY "button, we start reading the results achieved with Click board™.

Application Output Step 3

Upon completion of programming, the Application Output tab is automatically opened, where the achieved result can be read. In case of an inability to perform the Debug function, check if a proper connection between the MCU used by the setup and the CODEGRIP programmer has been established. A detailed explanation of the CODEGRIP-board connection can be found in the CODEGRIP User Manual. Please find it in the RESOURCES section.

Application Output Step 4

Software Support

Library Description

This library contains API for 4-20mA T Click driver.

Key functions:

  • c420mat_dac_output - This function sets the output of DAC

  • c420mat_set_i_out - This function sets the output current to selected value

Open Source

Code example

This example can be found in NECTO Studio. Feel free to download the code, or you can copy the code below.

/*!
 * \file 
 * \brief C420mat Click example
 * 
 * # Description
 * This aplication changes the value of the output current.
 *
 * The demo application is composed of two sections :
 * 
 * ## Application Init 
 * Initializes click SPI driver.
 * 
 * ## Application Task  
 * Periodically changes Iout value.
 * 
 * \author MikroE Team
 *
 */
// ------------------------------------------------------------------- INCLUDES

#include "board.h"
#include "log.h"
#include "c420mat.h"

// ------------------------------------------------------------------ VARIABLES

static c420mat_t c420mat;
static log_t logger;

// ------------------------------------------------------ APPLICATION FUNCTIONS

void application_init ( void )
{
    log_cfg_t log_cfg;
    c420mat_cfg_t cfg;

    /** 
     * Logger initialization.
     * Default baud rate: 115200
     * Default log level: LOG_LEVEL_DEBUG
     * @note If USB_UART_RX and USB_UART_TX 
     * are defined as HAL_PIN_NC, you will 
     * need to define them manually for log to work. 
     * See @b LOG_MAP_USB_UART macro definition for detailed explanation.
     */
    LOG_MAP_USB_UART( log_cfg );
    log_init( &logger, &log_cfg );
    log_info( &logger, "---- Application Init ----" );

    //  Click initialization.

    c420mat_cfg_setup( &cfg );
    C420MAT_MAP_MIKROBUS( cfg, MIKROBUS_1 );
    c420mat_init( &c420mat, &cfg );
}

void application_task ( void )
{
   c420mat_set_i_out( &c420mat, 56 );                   // sets Iout to 5.6mA
   Delay_ms( 3000 );
   c420mat_set_i_out( &c420mat, 158 );                  // sets Iout to 15.8mA
   Delay_ms( 3000 );
}

void main ( void )
{
    application_init( );

    for ( ; ; )
    {
        application_task( );
    }
}


// ------------------------------------------------------------------------ END

Additional Support

Resources