Microprocessors & Interfacing

The aims of this unit is to introduce students to the principles and importance of digital electronic system engineering; signal conversion, digital systems and microprocessor systems. The labs, comprising a major part of this unit, will give you practical experience in designing and creating embedded systems.

Return to EE10140 Moodle Course


Overall Objectives

In these laboratory sessions you will build on the knowledge developed in the first Assembly laboratory series about the development of embedded systems. In particular, this laboratory series will enable you to:

  • Write high level code in the C programming language

  • Compile and debug C code

  • Interface to an LCD display using a parallel interface

  • Interface to an ADC using a serial interface

  • Build a complete embedded system for measuring DC voltages

There are four scheduled laboratory slots and four corresponding activities within this script, however should you find yourself progressing quickly through each activity then you are free to move on to the more advanced activities at any point.


The course will be assessed by exam and coursework. The coursework will comprise 60% of the overall unit mark. Therefore laboratory attendance is compulsory, each laboratory session is cumulative so it is important that you complete each exercise.

The coursework assessment is broken down into three different tasks:

  1. Stopwatch (10% of unit)

  2. Digital lock (25% of unit)

  3. Voltmeter (25% of unit)

This laboratory series is for task three, you should work together in pairs and you will be assessed together. All work submitted must clearly state the partner with whom you have been working. This laboratory series is broken down into three activities and the coursework section. Each activity is designed to be completed in one laboratory session but you may start the coursework element at any time you wish.



The following hardware is available in the laboratory or electronics store:

  • Computer with MPLABX and XC8 compiler installed (note: you may download this for free from the microchip website and install on your own laptop)

  • PIC16F84A in-house development board

  • Breadboard to build circuit

  • Microchip PICKit3 programmer with USB cable

  • Kingbright SA08-11EWA seven segment LED display

  • Push button switches

  • PC1601A LCD display

  • MCP3001 ADC data converter

  • Various passive components from stores

Online Resources

Electronic resources can be found on the course Moodle page. You will find a copy of this laboratory script, as well as:

  • Datasheets for: The PIC16F84A SA08-11EWA seven segment display PC1601A LCD display MCP3001 ADC

  • XC8 compiler manual

  • Useful C library functions

The PIC16F84A development board

You will be using the same development board from the first laboratory series, information about this board is available in the corresponding laboratory documents.