The sensors in this coin acceptor use the thickness, diameter and fall time of the coins to identify them and it's fully programmable so you're not limited to any particular type of currency. Simply use the buttons and 7-segment display on the side of the unit to select a coin profile, insert a bunch of coin samples (or the same one, over and over) and you're good to go! After you've programmed the coin profiles, the coin acceptor will recognize them and report when each type is inserted, rejecting other coins.
This coin acceptor also has a coin inhibitor, so your controller can tell the coin acceptor not to take any more coins. All you need to get the coin acceptor working is a pocket full of change, a 12VDC supply and somewhere for the change to fall after it's accepted.
So maybe you won't get rich building your own vending machines but access control using different sizes of tokens might be cool, or even a virtual vending machine where you can buy MMORPG items. There are a ton of cool coin-operated projects just waiting to be built!
If you are interested in Internet of Things (IoT) or M2M projects check our open source sensor platform Waspmote which counts with more than 100 sensors available to use 'off the shelf', a complete API with hundreds of ready to use codes and a low consumption mode of just 0.7µA to ensure years of battery life.
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