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Development Of A Matlab Based Graphical User Interface Environment For Pic Microcontroller Projects

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2004 Annual Conference


Salt Lake City, Utah

Publication Date

June 20, 2004

Start Date

June 20, 2004

End Date

June 23, 2004



Conference Session

Instrumentation and Laboratory Systems

Page Count


Page Numbers

9.436.1 - 9.436.19

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Paper Authors

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Yan-Fang Li

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Sang-Hoon Lee

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Vikram Kapila

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NOTE: The first page of text has been automatically extracted and included below in lieu of an abstract

Session 2220

Development of a Matlab-Based Graphical User Interface Environment for PIC Microcontroller Projects

Sang-Hoon Lee, Yan-Fang Li, and Vikram Kapila

Department of Mechanical, Aerospace, and Manufacturing Engineering Polytechnic University, Brooklyn, NY 11201 Email: [slee05@utopia, yli14@utopia, vkapila@duke]


Peripheral Interface Controllers (PICs) are inexpensive microcontroller units with built-in serial communication functionality. Similarly, Matlab, a widely used technical computing software, allows serial communication with external devices. In addition, Matlab provides graphical design tools such as Simulink and Dials and Gauges Blockset. This paper exploits the serial communication capability of PIC microcontrollers and the Matlab software along with graphical design tools of Matlab to create a Matlab-based graphical user interface (GUI) environment for PIC microcontroller projects. Three examples are included to illustrate that the integration of low-cost PIC microcontrollers with the Matlab-based GUI environment allows data acquisition, data processing, data visualization, and control.

1. Introduction

Peripheral Interface Controllers (PICs), developed and marketed by Microchip Technology, Inc. [1], are inexpensive microcontroller units that include a central processing unit and peripherals such as memory, timers, and input/output (I/O) functions on an integrated circuit (IC). There are more than 100 varieties of PIC microcontrollers available, each providing functionality for different types of applications [2], making PICs one of the most popular microcontrollers for educational, hobby, and industrial applications. Similar to other microcontrollers, PICs are usually not designed to interface with human beings; instead they are directly embedded into automated products/processes. Thus, graphical user interface (GUI) capabilities, which have become a mainstay of many personal computer (PC) applications, are nonexistent for PICs.

“Proceedings of the 2004 American Society for Engineering Education Annual Conference & Exposition Copyright © 2004, American Society for Engineering Education”

Li, Y., & Lee, S., & Kapila, V. (2004, June), Development Of A Matlab Based Graphical User Interface Environment For Pic Microcontroller Projects Paper presented at 2004 Annual Conference, Salt Lake City, Utah.

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