Ultrasonic Sensor for PowerPoint

Hi Guys,

First time user and poster.

Im needing some help and hoping you will be kind enough to provide me with some support.

A bit of background to what Im trying to achieve, We are about to open a new carwash which we would like to have a sensor that detects when a car is in the tunnel for its wash and provides information to the driver who is driving through the tunnel... for example before the car enters the tunnel we want to have information such as ensure antennas are down and windows are up. Then when the car drives over the sensor another screen appears showing please wait, keep engine running etc, once the car is off the sensor the screen reverts back to the first screen for the driver.

I will need a waterproof ultrasonic sensor like this http://www.ebay.com.au/itm/1Pcs-Waterproof-Ultrasonic-Module-Distance-Measuring-Sensor-for-Arduino-TE501-/331876257628?hash=item4d455dcf5c:g:qHoAAOSwvg9XV~oi and A computer running powerpoint with the Arduino plugged into the computer.

What I would like to achieve is that when there is no car over the sensor it will show the first slide and when the car is over the sensor the second slide appears.

What do I need to achieve this? What version of Arduino should I get, What coding do I need? (I'm assuming a keyboard code that would be a left and right arrow is enough?) If someone could show me where I can find this coding? How does the unit communicate with the computer as an input device?

If you could help me that would be amazing! It is something we are needing sooner than later and appreciate the help and support you can provide.

Thanks!

What I would like to achieve is that when there is no car over the sensor

You don't seem to know how an ultrasonic sensor works, or what it measures.

You would NOT place it on the ground, and expect drivers to drive over it.

What do I need to achieve this?

A better project description, including distances that trigger events, etc. An Arduino and an ultrasonic sensor. Some means of getting the data from the Arduino to the PC. An app on the PC that does something with the data from the Arduino.

What version of Arduino should I get

The current one, of course.

What coding do I need?

Any that you don't have.

If someone could show me where I can find this coding?

It will be right there in the IDE after you type it...

How does the unit communicate with the computer as an input device?

It doesn't. It sends data to the serial port. Whether communications happens, or not, depends on what is connected to the other end of the serial port, and what that thing is doing.

Dear Paul,

Thank you for your reply.

I should have made myself clearer.

The sensor it self will not be run over by a car with its tyres, It will be placed in the middle of the car washing pit that will be specially designed to fit the sensor. If the unit needs to be placed on the side in a pole that is possible as well.

IF you have a better or more sensible solution, I would love to hear it, it seems your knowledge is quite large and that you are the man to rely on.

As for a better project description. How much more advance would you like me to be? How many inches will the sensor need to reach to detect if there is a car is there or not?

The reason for coming and posting on here was to get put in the right direction on getting setup. not to feel stupid and dumb like your reply has made me feel. IS everyone on the site the same?

I hope your day gets better if you’re having a bad one.

As for a better project description. How much more advance would you like me to be? How many inches will the sensor need to reach to detect if there is a car is there or not?

Yes. That is the kind of information that would be useful. Everything starts with sketches, pictures, something visual. You know what you car washing setup looks like. We don't. The better you can describe it, the better we can help you.

not to feel stupid and dumb like your reply has made me feel.

That wasn't my intent. But, you need to understand that you won't complete this project in 10 minutes. There are many parts to the project that have to work together. You'll make progress on some part, and then run into problems because the way you thought that two devices would work together isn't practical.

We can help you with any part of the project, from getting the big picture to how to make the smallest detail happen.

But, we can't write the code for you with the requirements that you have defined so far, nor is there likely to be some existing code that you can just download and install and expect it just work.

Sometimes, a splash of cold water is good.

What @PaulS says is correct if a bit cryptic.

Your Arduino needs to use the ultrasonic sensor to detect when there is a car in the way. The usual way to do that is for the Arduino to measure the distance and for the program to know what different distances values mean. How close the sensor needs to be to all the wet stuff depends on the range the sensor is designed to detect.

When the Arduino detects something at a pre-specified range it should send “something” to the PC. There are, broadly speaking, two possibilities here.

The most versatile is for the Arduino to send a message such as ‘’ meaning a car has arrived at the place or ‘’ meaning the car has left the place. But this needs a program running on the PC to receive and interpret those messages. This Python - Arduino demo may give you a starting point.

The other option is to use a Leonardo or Micro which can pretend to be a PC keyboard or mouse. Instead of sending a message it would, perhaps, send a keystroke which could be handled directly by PowerPoint.

Whichever option you choose you do NOT want to send a continuous stream of data to the PC. Just do something once when a car arrives and once when it leaves.

…R

Thanks for the replies,

I have attached a photo to help explain the tunnel and situation a bit more. (I hope)

|500x375

I like the idea of a keystroke occurring only when its required and that would be when a car is over the sensor and then when it moves off the sensor. I'm assuming something like "left arrow for no car" "right arrow for car above"

In regards to height, We will be working with cars from a 4wd to a sports car such as a Ferrari, We would only need to set one defined height. IM assuming we would need to set a higher ranger then a lower range?

I hope this helps more.

@Pauls, We have plenty of cold water at the carwash you're welcome at anytime to come visit. (flights not included)

It seems to me that an ultrasonic sensor placed near where the screen is, with the proper range, would keep everything dry (or drier) and close together.

When the range becomes some value, send one keystroke. When it becomes some other value, send another keystroke.

You could even add a 7 segment display to show distance, and increase the cool factor.

Looks like a frighteningly expensive car wash.

I used to get my car washed once a year (whether it needed it or not) when I visited my brother and his son did the wash if the garden hose was out.

...R

PaulS: It seems to me that an ultrasonic sensor placed near where the screen is, with the proper range, would keep everything dry (or drier) and close together.

When the range becomes some value, send one keystroke. When it becomes some other value, send another keystroke.

You could even add a 7 segment display to show distance, and increase the cool factor.

Let me have a look today and see if its possible to install it into a pole. Our other option is a laser sensor that creates the keystroke when the laser line has been broken?

is coding for something like this easy?

I appreciate the help!

Hi, You need to talk to the installation company and or the manufacturer of the control system for your car wash.

I would be using Industrial grade sensors to survive the wet/damp environment and be able to detect vehicles in a water spray.

Chat with sensor distributors, ie beam sensors, inductive sensors.

I like the idea, just difficult physical environment.

Tom.... :)

I agree with TomGeorge that you need to look at Industrial Automation equipment, as this is ruggedised and you can select the correct IP (water and dust proofing) ratings for the environment you are in. Depending on your country, one of the main manufacturers like Siemens, Schneider Electric, Allen Bradley will be dominant. Electrical wholesalers can help you make a selection as well. The output from these sensors can be on/off or distance based - depends on what you want to do - and there are many technical solutions available.

A car wash is already full of automated equipment. I would ask the manufacturer if they already have a signal (or could easily provide one) for a car entering the wash. This can be provided as 'dry' electrical contact that will switch your own system's voltage. It would save you a lot of hassle and maintenance.

I would also avoid the relatively fragile links to a PC (running Windows - which is known to crash at odd times) and keep the whole environment in the 'automation' space. You can use LED matrix displays to show messages and/or ruggedised screens that connect directly to automation equipment.

Cougarmon:
Let me have a look today and see if its possible to install it into a pole. Our other option is a laser sensor that creates the keystroke when the laser line has been broken?

is coding for something like this easy?

I appreciate the help!

what you are asking is not that difficult.

your path on the floor seems to be as protected as any place you will find.
you need to be able to get a wire there and to your electrical NEMA12 enclosure. NEMA4 may be a bit overkill, see what they are installing now.

I would put the sensor on the floor as you want, in a small enclosure and then make sure you can pull new wires for it.
I would use a NANO because you can get it with a screw terminal board easily.

http://www.ebay.com/itm/331851521941
(5pcs) -Nano-Terminal-Adapter-Screw-Shield-

as for the industrial parts. that is all well and good. what industrial means is that it has more tolerance for expected abuse.
I had people tell me on here, that a generic arduino is more reliable than a residential light switch. you know like the one in your house that has been in daily operation for over 30 years ? yup, pretty adamant about it as well. so, there are some on here that think the Arduino is nearly bulletproof when installed correctly.

that said, your connections are a concern. water, vibration, strain relief, etc.

I would offer that you can buy laser based garage door sensors from home depot and put them on the walls in a secure place. maybe one on the floor, one on the ceiling ?

Also look for parking lot sensors arduino or parking space sensors arduino. end your searches with arduino.
there are more than a few people that put one on every space in a parking lot to know where and what is available. that is also a pretty rugged environment.

as for the monitor, I would post a separate thread in the displays forum. unless you are wanting to have TV or advertising, your messages should not need anything extraordinary.

my last bit is that due to the low cost, get two, have a redundant sensor and board ready for instant swap out.

What about an optical detector on one side and a bright lamp (not a laser, please) on the other side (or top and bottom). The body of the car breaks the beam.

...R

In short, an ultrasonic sensor is not at all appropriate for this purpose but if it were used it would be ceiling mounted to protect it from moisture, oil and dirt.

An inductive loop sensor is the standard for vehicle sensing, commercial light beam sensors mounted at the sides another possibility.

And it would be very surprising given all the other equipment you have, if the supplier did not include this already.