As many of you know, the Arduino platform is great for controlling motors and also accepting data from sensors and other devices - and with this in mind one area that can benefit from Arduino is model railroads. From simply controlling model street lights to total layout control, an Arduino can be used most effectively. One example of this has been demonstrated by Chihoon Ryu.
In his example, the power to a section of track with infra-red sensors at each end is controlled via an Arduino and motor shield - and is set to allow a train to travel forwards and backwards automatically along the section, as shown in the following video:
Although your layout will most likely be larger than the demonstration unit, the theory behind the sensors and motor control can be put to good use. For complete details and more on model railroads - check out Chihoori's website. And for more, we're on twitter and Google+, so follow us for news and product updates as well.
If you're looking into starting with Arduino and motor control - check out our new HBRIDGE: DC/stepper motor shield. Based around the powerful Allegro A4954 H-bridge driver IC you can control two DC motors with complete ease, or one bipolar stepper motor. With connections for external power management, a complete beginners' guide and documentation - motor control couldn't be any easier. For more information and to order, visit the HBRIDGE: page.