Let’s talk about shields and more specifically shields developed around the Arduino Uno platform.
The Arduino Uno is a development board used by students, hobbyists and professionals to help bring coding to life. The Uno has rows of female receptacles to allow you to plug in wires as a temporary solution to hook up various components (such as LEDs, motors, sensors, buttons, etc etc).
A shield is a circuit board that fits on top of the Arduino platform. Shields can have a specific purpose such as connectivity, driving motors, or a touchscreen; or they can be used to help ‘clean up’ projects and eliminate the need for a separate breadboard.
So let’s highlight some of the really cool shields that we have:
- 1568-1217-ND – Can-bus shield
- 1597-1146-ND – Relay shield - useful for home automation
- 1568-1184-ND – ESP8266 WiFi shield
- 1738-1059-ND – Screwless terminal shield
- 1597-1329-ND - Another screw shield, the neat thing about this the board is reduced to just the terminal blocks.
- 1528-1207-ND – Proto shield
- 1568-1522-ND - Weather Shield - Make your own Arduino Weather Station.
- 1528-1047-ND - Wingshield - Add terminal block connections to your project.
- 1528-1044-ND - Add SD Card / Data Logging capability
- 1528-1027-ND - Touchscreen shield
See more Arduino shields on the Digi-Key site Here.
Some shields - but not all of them - will come with regular male pin headers to allow you to plug into the Arduino. I recommend picking up a set of Stacking connectors (such as 1568-1413-ND or 1528-1074-ND)
Q: Do I have to use an Arduino Shield with an Arduino?
A: No! Arduino shields are widely used in the industry and have become a standard form factor. Take for example the microcontroller dev board STMicro Nucleo (497-14361-ND) which features the same set of rows used on the Uno.
To read about Arduino shields on the Arduino Playground, Click Here