Freescale announced this week their latest accelerometer MMA7660FC. This is a 3-axis digital output (I2C), very low power, low profile capacitive micro machined accelerometer featuring a low pass filter, compensation for 0g offset and gain errors, and conversion to 6-bit digital values at a user configurable output data rate. It offers low-power operation of 47 µA at 1 sample per second. The device can be used for sensor data changes, product orientation, and gesture detection through an interrupt pin.
The product description ends with: "The device is housed in an extremely small 3 mm x 3 mm x 0.9 mm DFN package."
Elektor will present very soon its mobile 32-bit platform Sceptre which includes, amongst others, a 3D accelerometer from Freescale. For the Sceptre I have spent a lot of time looking for hand-solderable accelerometers but without success. Do easy to solder accelerometers actually exist? I guess not, but maybe someone will know of one and tell me about it. A more useful question is probably:
Do you have a technique for reliably soldering QFN or DFN packages by hand?
This question interests me very much, and, I am sure, many other people as well.
Here is a picture of the Sceptre that I sneaked out of the lab.
Hot, hot, hot!!!
This is one of the first three prototypes and it still works (one died during temperature testing). A second version that fixes some bugs and adds some improvements is on its way.
The accelerometer is the little black square in the left lower corner of the board (its a QFN unfortunately). On the top right is a Bluetooth module and if you look well enough you can see on the left an SD card sticking out from the bottom of the card. It runs from a mobile phone batterie and a charger for it is included on the board.