Introduction to XBee Explorer Dongle

This is rhydoLABZ make XBee Explorer board with USB A Type connector for the XBee line of products which can be used as Dongle – can avoid USB cable and LAPTOP friendly!! . The board is populated with high current LDO to support most of  XBee modules including XBee Pro! .The XBee Explorer Dongle will help you to reduce lot of hassles normally facing to implement Xbee Network.We have also added two more LED’s (SLEEP & Associate) apart from normal 4 LED. This help you to use latest versions XBee Modules as well.  The module is self powered from USB Port itself, thanks to low dropout regulator.

After Power up the explorer Dongle board will create a virtual COM port in PC , and you can communicate with the module same as serial port devices. The Explorer board is built with FT232RL Chip from FTDI and drivers are available for Windows ,Linux and MAC.

This unit works with all XBee modules including the Series 1 and Series 2.5, standard and Pro version. Plug the Xbee Module into the XBee Explorer Dongle , attach to the LAPTOP, and you will have direct access to the serial and programming pins on the XBee unit.

 Features:

  • USB A Type Connector
  • Built in SMD fuse for protecting PC USB Port
  • Powered from PC USB Port
  • High Current (500ma) 3V3 Voltage Regulator for XBee/XBee PRO Module
  • 5 Onboard Status LEDs (Associate,Sleep,Tx,Rx and RSSI)
  • Onboard Power LED
  • High qualty PTH PCB and made by Automatic Pick and Place Machine
Specifications:
PIN Diagram:
PIN descriptions are given below:
Layout:
How to Test:
Test your XBee Explorer Dongle with  PC:
  • When XBee Explorer Dongle is connected with USB port of PC,the PWR (blue) LED will glow on the top of module ,it shows power indication.
  • For a quick installation on XBee Explorer Dongle and connection details please read the blog…   
  •  Here we are using a paired Zigbee, to construct a simple point-to-point network.One of the devices must be a Coordinator  and the other must be a Router (an ‘endpoint’ device).
  • After completion of installation setup SLP LED(Green) is turn ON and also ASSOC LED(Red) will blink rapidly 2 times per seconds(Association Confirmation received to the endpoint device from the Coordinator) or ASSOC LED will not blink if the End Device has not associated.
  • During the transmission   TXD led blinks as per the data rate and at the time of reception RXD led  blinks.
  • RSSI LED(yellow) on top of the board is connected to the RSSI (Received Signal Strength Indicator) pin of the XBee module. XBee outputs a PWM signal on this pin which is directly proportional to the quality of the RF signal, until the last packet was received by it. This PWM signal applied to the  RSSI LED will vary its brightness as per the quality of the RF signal,better the RF signal brighter the LED.
Here below one example is shown: 
  • Placing  XBee module  on XBee Explorer Dongle is shown below.
  • In this example we are making communication between two paired zigbee COM PORT of coordinator zigbee is set in Hyperterminal and wrote a message like here it is “Hai Xbee connected” sent it to end point Xbee.
  • And we opened other terminal window i.e realterm and COM PORT set in realterm terminal window is of End point Xbee and received message sent from coordinator Xbee in realterm.Click here to download realterm.
Note:The above message  shown in hyperterminal is written from coordinator XBee and simultaneously sent to the end device  XBee.
Resources:

Schematic
Realterm Software.

How to Buy:

Support:
Please share your ideas with us, visit our forum for discussion 

Frequently Asked Questions(FAQ):

Q.Which XBee modules are compatible with XBee Explorer Dongle ?
Ans.This XBee Explorer Dongle works with all XBee modules including  Series 1 and Series 2.5, standard and Pro version.

Q.How to connect XBee Explorer Dongle with PC?
Ans.When XBee Explorer Dongle is connected via USB port of PC,the PWR (blue) LED will glow on the top of module,after that please go through the link XBee Explorer Dongle for installation procedure.

 

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