April 7, 2010
School of Engineering, Amritapuri
A National Level Microcontroller Workshop on PIC16F877A was conducted by the IEEE Students Chapter of Amrita Vishwa Vidyapeetham, Amritapuri Campus, on March 27-28, 2010.
55 students and 5 faculty members from different parts of India participated. “The workshop was actually meant for students only. But when some faculty members showed an interest, we invited them to participate,” shared Br. Rajesh Kannan.
Br. Rajesh teaches in the Department of Electronics and Communication Engineering at Amritapuri. He is also the faculty counselor of the IEEE Students Chapter. Workshop sessions were conducted by him as well as final-semester ECE students.
Students came from colleges in Kerala, Karnataka, Tamil Nadu and Andhra Pradesh. They represented colleges such as NIT Calicut, Manipal and RMK College of Engineering. Faculty even traveled from as far as the Military College of Electronics, Secunderabad to attend.
The participants received Amrita PIC Microcontroller Kits that consisted of the following — PIC Base, PIC Burner Unit, PIC16F877A , a breadboard and other essential components needed for the hands-on workshop and project work.
PIC stands for Programmable Interface Controller. Highly popular with both industrial developers and hobbyists due to its low cost and wide availability of free development tools, this has been the platform of choice for several Amrita student projects.
In the workshop, the students and faculty shared what they knew, what they had learned. The two days included seminars on topics such as PIC Microcontroller, I/O Ports, Assembly Programming, PIC Interrupts, Analog to Digital Convertor and Pulse Width Modulator.
Hands-on, practical sessions provided an introduction to MPLAB Software for Programming PIC. Participants worked on hardware experiments and a mini-project. “Most participants were able to complete all the experiments,” stated Br. Rajesh.
“In their feedback, most participants rated the workshop as a 9 out of a 10,” he shared later. “This was indeed a remarkable success for our IEEE Students Chapter.” All participants received certificates of participation.
“The program was very informative,” stated Smera Mohan of NMAM Institute of Technology, Manipal. “All volunteers in the lab were very helpful and explained the projects very well.”
“Congratulations to all the committee members who conducted a program like this. We got more than what we expected,” remarked Neethu Zachariah from Amal Jyothi College of Engineering.
The general feeling was perhaps best echoed by this participant’s feedback who wrote, “I would rate the workshop as one of the very best ones. I won’t miss any programs you conduct in the future too.”