June 18, 2006
June 18, 2006
June 21, 2006
11.597.1 - 11.597.13
ETHERNET ENABLED Wi-Fi MAIL-BOX
Come winter and people in homes spread over acres in the countryside, dread the idea of walking on snow-covered driveways in icy conditions up to the mailbox from their cozy confinements and find that no mail arrived. This paper presents a project that will enable the home-resident to monitor the mail arrival while sitting in his or her cozy home. The laser beam interruption due to the mail droppings in the mailbox is relayed as a serial data stream comprised of Ethernet packets using the Wi-Fi communication link of the Wi-port controlled by the microcontroller from outside the home. The mailbox also monitors outside temperature and relays on the Wi-Fi link. On the controller side, the received data is fed into a GUI applet that the client interfaces and interacts with. This information is made available on the Internet using an embedded Web server and can be viewed from anywhere in the world and at any time. The mailbox is a rugged and environment –savvy design and is ac-dc powered with battery back-up. The Wi-Fi mailbox is just one application. The design can be utilized in many innovative applications.
One of the authors got interested in the problem of mailboxes in the countryside being placed far away from the residence, either on the far end of a big lot or on the curbside, and the residents having to walk a long distance in cold weather only to find that no mail arrived, a burdensome chore. Commercially available was a wireless system that consisted of a transmitter and receiver. The receiver, in the homeowner’s home, would beep to let them know that they had mail in their mailbox. This system did not have the capability to connect to the internet or any LAN so one could check for mail at work, or school. There was clearly the need for such a smart mailbox that could be monitored and controlled via the internet from anywhere in the world at any point in time. The idea of checking snail mail over the internet was exciting to many people.
II. System Description
The Wi-Fi mailbox is fabricated as a 6-inch extruded aluminum box for faraday shielding, with GFI outlets, an Ethernet RJ45 coupler, UTP CAT 5e Ethernet cable, Lightning arrestors and 2.4GHz -7dBi omni directional antenna with 2ft of LMR195 cable. The Wi-Fi mail box system consists of six subsystems: 1) Mailbox, 2) Sensors, 3) Development board, 4) Communication, 5) Interface and 6) Power supply.
Agrawal, J., & Farook, O., & Sekhar, C., & Segura, M. (2006, June), Ethernet Enabled Wi Fi Mail Box Paper presented at 2006 Annual Conference & Exposition, Chicago, Illinois. https://peer.asee.org/1036
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