This board is a compact (0.4″ × 0.9″) breakout board for ST’s LIS3MDL three-axis digital magnetic sensor; we therefore recommend careful reading of the LIS3MDL datasheet (2MB pdf) before using this product. The LIS3MDL is a great IC, but its small package makes it difficult for the typical student or hobbyist to use. It also operates at voltages below 3.6 V, which can make interfacing difficult for microcontrollers operating at 5 V. This carrier board addresses these issues by incorporating additional electronics, including a 3.3 V voltage regulator and level-shifting circuits, while keeping the overall size as compact as possible. The board ships fully populated with its SMD components, including the LIS3MDL, as shown in the product picture.
The LIS3MDL has many configurable options, including four selectable sensitivity (gain) settings, a wide choice of output data rates, and a programmable external interrupt signal. The three magnetic field strength readings are available through a digital interface, which can be configured to operate in either I²C (TWI) or SPI mode.
The carrier board includes a low-dropout linear voltage regulator that provides the 3.3 V required by the LIS3MDL, which allows the sensor to be powered from a 2.5-5.5 V supply. The regulator output is available on the VDD pin and can supply almost 150 mA to external devices. The breakout board also includes a circuit that shifts the I²C clock and data lines to the same logic voltage level as the supplied VIN, making it simple to interface the board with 5 V systems, and the board’s 0.1″ pin spacing makes it easy to use with standard solderless breadboards and 0.1″ perfboards.
This LIS3MDL carrier is pin-compatible with many of our previous ST I²C/SPI sensor carriers, including our LSM303D compass and accelerometer carrier, and the orientation of the sensor axes is the same. However, since the ICs contain different sensors with different I²C addresses and configuration registers, code written to interface with another chip will need to be modified to work with an LIS3MDL.
For sensor fusion applications, our MinIMU-9 v5 and AltIMU-10 v5 inertial measurement units combine this LIS3MDL with an LSM6DS33 3-axis accelerometer and 3-axis gyro on a single board, providing nine independent readings that can be used to calculate an absolute orientation. The AltIMU-10 v5 also includes an LPS25H pressure sensor that can be used to calculate altitude.
- Dimensions: 0.4″ × 0.9″ × 0.1″ (10 × 23 × 3 mm)
- Weight without header pins: 0.6 g (0.02 oz)
- Operating voltage: 2.5 V to 5.5 V
- Supply current: 3 mA
- Output format (I²C/SPI): one 16-bit reading per axis
- Sensitivity range (configurable): ±4, ±8, ±12, or ±16 gauss