I’ve started playing with an Arduino Ethernet board with POE. This board is well suited to IOT projects where you can run an Ethernet cable to the device. POE stands for Power Over Ethernet so the only connection we need to the device is an inexpensive CAT5 cable. Both a data connection and power are provided via the cable.
I got my Arduino Ethernet board from Newark/Element 14. It looks like a normal Arduino with an several extra goodies. Ethernet RJ45, micro SD, and a second board attached to handle the POE feature.
Since the board is setup with Ethernet the “Thing” can communicate directly with IOT servers.
My first project plan was a hydroponic tomato garden. Unfortunately I was a bit delayed and learned that the local squirrels like green tomatoes.. My plants will not be able to produce for me so I scrapped that plan. Anyway…
I was going to monitor soil moisture and temperature with data sent into the cloud. A separate application would monitor the data and send back commands to open a water valve to fill the reservoir in my Earth box.
I still plan to explore IOT using this Arduino POE module and will blog about it as I go. First step will be figuring out what to use on the inside for connection to the CAT5 cable going to the Arduino. I know it will need to connect to the outgoing RJ45 and have a way to connect to my network (another RJ45) and a wall wart power input. The device will combine the power and Ethernet signals into the cable for the Arduino to consume.
What should I get for the inside connection? Have any advice, please post it in the comments.