Vernier Software and Technology
Vernier Software & Technology

Digital Control Unit

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The Digital Control Unit (DCU) makes it easy to use the digital output lines of an interface to control DC electrical devices.


Including a DCU with your standard Vernier sensors provides a perfect way to implement Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS) in the classroom. The engaging quality of DCU projects will appeal to students who may not necessarily be drawn to engineering or computer programming. In addition, DCU projects can be simple and fast enough to easily integrate into your sensor-based science curriculum. For those students wanting more, the DCU can be used to create fun, sensor-based projects such as a motion-controlled drinking fountain or an automated blood pressure cuff.

Controlling an electrical device is easy with the DCU and Logger Pro software or using your LabQuest 2 (version 2.7 or newer). The DCU connects to a Vernier interface the same way a digital sensor does; just connect it to a digital port (an LED on the DCU will provide feedback that it is properly connected). There are two easy ways to connect your electrical device to the DCU; connect your electrical device to the DCU header pins or screw the electrical device’s wires into the DCU’s screw terminal. Once the electrical device is attached to the DCU, an external power supply, such as the LabQuest or LabPro power supply (not included), is required to power the device. Start Logger Pro and start using your DCU to run a low-cost STEM activity from simple DC electronic components.

The DCU can also be controlled using National Instruments LabVIEW for Education software. In addition, the DCU can be connected to an Arduino or NI myDAQ.

Sample Data



  • Output lines: 6 (Logger Pro software allows independent control of the first 3 lines)
  • Maximum current on each line: 600 mA
  • Allowable power supply and output voltage: 5 to 12 volts
Download the user manual for full specifications

Engineering Extension Activities

Engineering Extension Activities provide a way to take an existing Vernier science lab experiment and easily incorporate engineering. Use sensor data, the Vernier Digital Control Unit and Logger Pro software to quickly create sensor-based control systems. Engineering Extension Activities »

Experiments and Lab Ideas

Lab Ideas and Innovative Uses

Lemelson-MIT InvenTeams

Do you have an innovative use for Vernier technology? What about a favorite lab or demo? We love to hear what creative uses people have for our products. Please email them to

Compatibility Requirements

The Digital Control Unit may require a compatible interface and software. Choose a platform below to see compatible interface and software options.

What’s Included

Ordering Information

All prices are for U.S. educators.

NameOrder CodePriceQuantity
Digital Control UnitDCU-BTD$61
Optional Accessories
DCU Terminal Plug KitDCU-PLUG$39
Digital Control Unit Power Output KitDCU-POP$35
LabQuest Power SupplyLQ-PS$11
Vernier AC AdapterIPS$12


Related Products

Educational use only: Vernier products are designed for educational use. They are not appropriate for industrial, medical, or commercial applications. Product usage disclaimer »

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