Vernier Software and Technology
Vernier Software & Technology
Tech Info Library

Why are certain sensors not able to work with the NXT Adapter?

The answer depends on the sensor:

First of all, only sensors with the BTA connector can work with this adapter. This eliminates all the BTD, Bluetooth, and USB sensors.

One of the limitations of the NXT, at least when it is used with MINDSTORMS, is that it cannot sample faster than a few samples a second. This makes any sensor which requires rapid sampling unusable. For example: MCA, HRM, Blood Pressure (BP-BTA), or EKG.

The CO2-BTA sensor draws more current than the NXT can supply, so it does not work well.

The IRT-BTA Infrared Thermometer almost works. It works well at high temperatures, but not well at temperatures near normal room temperatures. The heart of this problem is that the power supply voltage for the NXT is not 5.0 volts, but somewhat lower.

Two sensors do not work because they take the signal in from the -10 to +10 volt input line. Those sensors are the simple voltage probe (VP-BTA) and 30V-BTA.

Ion Selective Electrodes (NH2-BTA, CA-BTA, CL-BTA, NO3-BTA), the Wide-Range Temperature Probe (WRT-BTA), Tris-compatible pH Electrode (FPH-BTA), and the Melt have complex calibration equations and we did not build those into the NXT code. These are expensive, complex sensors and we felt it was unlikely that they would be used with the LEGO NXT Robotics System.

LEGO® MINDSTORMS® Education EV3 Core Set with Charger, order code LEGO-EV3-CORE, $412
NXT Sensor Adapter, order code BTA-NXT, $39
Vernier Engineering Projects with LEGO® MINDSTORMS® Education EV3 (Electronic Version), order code EP-EV3-E, $40
TIL 3339: LEGO® Mindstorms® EV3 Troubleshooting and FAQs

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