Range of BBC micro:bit compatible products
26 January 2016
Kitronik launched an innovative range of new BBC micro:bit compatible products, inspiring students to start coding.
Kitronik unveiled the products at this year’s Bett Show where it exhibited alongside the BBC and two other BBC micro:bit partner organisations, Samsung and the Institute of Engineering and Technology (IET).
The launch at the Bett Show was timed to coincide with the delivery to schools of the BBC micro:bit over the coming months, ensuring that teachers have available a practical set of solutions to enable the delivery of innovative and engaging lessons using the BBC micro:bit.
The extensive new product range includes add on boards and accessories designed to expand the use of the BBC micro:bit by enabling it to interact with external sensors and devices. This will allow students using the device to learn coding skills in an engaging, practical and fun way, maximising the opportunities for them to become inspired by the potential of coding.
Enabling the BBC micro:bit to be used with external sensors and devices will be instrumental in helping to expand the use of the device into subject areas relating to the Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) agenda. The resources will extend the use of the BBC micro:bit into D&T lessons, fusing together STEM subjects and enabling teachers to confidently deliver lessons using the new device.
Geoff Hampson, Kitronik co-founder, explains coding the BBC micro:bit to create a project on a computer is fantastic, but using that coding knowledge to make an external object behave in a certain way, power a device, or to create a piece of wearable technology can really grab the interest of young people. This could be critical in helping the BBC micro:bit play its part in inspiring the next generation and helping to bridge the UK digital skills gap.
The new product range stems from Kitronik’s partner role in the BBC micro:bit initiative. The company has distributed over 1 million electronics project kits to over 3,000 UK schools to create learning materials and e-textiles project resources to assist teachers in the planning of inspiring lessons using the BBC micro:bit within Design and Technology.
Geoff adds, focusing on using the BBC micro:bit within D&T gives students access to soldering irons, sewing machines, laser cutters and other equipment that won’t necessarily be available in ICT or computing. Using the BBC micro:bit’s expansion connector allows students to do some really exciting things with their BBC micro:bit and the new product range has been designed to help them do that quickly and as easily as possible.
Kitronik’s new range includes:
The Kitronik Inventor’s Kit for the BBC micro:bit provides a fantastic way of learning how to construct electronic circuits and create code. It is supplied with a tutorial booklet that guides the user through 10 experiments.
The BBC micro:bit has a selection of pins that are located on the bottom edge of its PCB. By using Kitronik’s specially designed ‘edge’ connector board in conjunction with the breakout board, it is easy to use these pins to connect the additional components included in the kit.
No soldering is required and the first circuit can be built in minutes.
RRP: £24.95 inc VAT. For further information, please click here.
Edge connector breakout board
This breakout board has been designed to offer an easy way to connect additional circuits and hardware to the pins on the edge of the BBC micro:bit. It provides access to a large number of the BBC micro:bit processor pins, allowing extra functionality to be added. This product requires soldering.
RRP: £3.00 inc VAT. For further information, please click here.
Edge connector breakout board – pre-built
This is a pre-built version of the edge connector breakout board, so no soldering is required. It also comes with fitted pin headers. This allows for quick and easy prototyping using jumper wires.
RRP: £4.99 inc VAT. For further information, please click here.
Motor driver board
This board provides a simple way to add motor driving capability to a BBC micro:bit. It allows two motors to be driven with full forward, reverse and stop control. It has terminal blocks to connect four input devices and a regulated 3V supply is fed into the 80-way connector to power the inserted BBC micro:bit.
RRP: £11.50 inc VAT. For further information, please click here.
MI:Pro protector case
The MI:Pro protector case not only keeps a BBC micro:bit in perfect condition but also offers a number of other benefits. The 2 x AAA battery pack can be bolted to the back making a compact and portable unit. It can also be stood neatly on a desk and provides large, easy to read labels for the A and B buttons. The ‘Edge Connector’ on the bottom of the BBC micro:bit remains accessible.
RRP: £4.75 inc VAT. For further information, please click here.
MI:pro ‘mountable’ case
This is the wall/desk mountable version of the MI:Pro protector case. This has been designed with a different rear plate that has two ‘keyhole slot’ style mounting points.
This version does not allow the 2 x AAA battery pack to be bolted to the back as it is designed to fit tight against the mounting surface. It is ideal for use in USB powered applications.
RRP: £4.75 in VAT. For further information, please click here.
This prototyping system is an ideal way for testing and designing circuits that are to be connected to the pins on the bottom edge of the BBC micro:bit.
By using Kitronik’s specially designed ‘edge’ connector board in conjunction with the breakout board, it is easy to use these pins to connect additional components using the included jumper wires meaning that no soldering is required.
RRP: £14.95 inc VAT. For further information, please click here.
In addition to the above product range, Kitronik will soon be releasing a wearables kit for the BBC micro:bit. This kit will allow a BBC micro:bit to be used to create ‘wearable’ designs. It is based around a range of components from Kitronik’s Electro-Fashion E-Textiles range.
These components can be connected to the BBC micro:bit using conductive thread to create truly flexible designs.
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