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Hello Friends, I hope you are fine and doing great in your lives. Today I am going to write an article on real life examples of embedded systems. These Embedded Systems Examples belong to real-life appliances and devices, which we normally use in our daily routine. I hope you already have the idea of embedded systems but if you don't, you can find the introduction to embedded systems in my previous article What is Embedded System? And also you can go through What is Embedded Computer? I have also shared few Embedded Systems Examples in this article. My article on 8 things for learning embedded system programming can help you in getting starting with your Embedded Systems Project.

Embedded systems perform specific tasks. They have a Microcontroller as the main part which controls all the operations required through them. This article on examples of embedded systems can help you to get an idea of common systems which we use in our daily lives. These systems are smart and more efficient, which is increasing their use day by day. Almost every device that we use today is an example of embedded systems. Embedded systems examples can be seen at our homes, offices, industries and in automation systems.

So, in simple words, most of the daily routine appliances, devices or automated equipment lies in the circle of Embedded Systems Examples. I have discussed a few of these Examples of Embedded Systems in today's tutorial so that you got to know their importance and believe me if you learn embedded Systems then you can also create something, helpful to society. So, let's get started with Examples of Embedded Systems:

Examples of Embedded Systems

As I told earlier, there's an endless list of Examples of Embedded Systems and we can't cover all of these Embedded Systems examples in detail here so I have discussed a few of these Embedded Systems Examples in detail and have mentioned the rest of them and yes still I have missed a lot. :) One of the most exciting Examples of Embedded Systems is Digital Camera so let's have a look at its features:

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Embedded Product: Digital Camera

  • One of the embedded products is a digital camera.
  • Cameras that we use today are smart and have a lot of features that were not present in early cameras all because of the embedded system used in them.
  • A digital camera has basically three functions, to capture an image which we call data, to store image data, and to represent this data.
  • Today images are stored and processed in form of digital data in bits.
  • There is no need for the film for storing images. This feature has increased the storage capacity and made it easy to transfer images.
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  • In digital cameras, the first image is captured and converted to digital form.
  • This digital image is stored in internal memory.
  • When the camera is attached to your personal computer for uploading images, it transfers the stored data.
  • If I talk about the smart camera, it has some extra features than digital cameras.
  • Smart cameras are able to capture details of the scene.
  • These cameras analyze the images and are able to detect humans, motion, faces etc. from the whole image.
  • For the detection of objects in the image, some processing is required in cameras.
  • Usually, image processing includes low-level and high-level processing.
  • Various algorithms are available that are employed for this purpose.
  • Components of a smart camera include:
    • Image sensor that may be a CCD (Charge Coupled Device) or a CMOS (Complementary metal-oxide-semiconductor)
    • Analog to digital converter (A2D)
    • Image Processor
    • Memory.
    • Lens.
    • Led or other illuminating devices.
    • Communication Interface etc.
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Smart cameras may consist of some more devices depending on features.

  • So, we can say that camera is one of the important embedded systems examples. It has its own processor, sensors, actuators and also memory for storage purposes.

Embedded Systems Application: Automotive Embedded Systems

  • Examples of embedded systems include automotive. Today cars use embedded systems to replace old traditional systems.
  • Electronic Control Units are used in automotive embedded systems Examples.
  • This unit contains a Microcontroller, switches, sensors, drivers, etc.
  • All the sensors and actuators are connected to the electronic control unit.
  • Automobiles using embedded systems may consist of hundreds of microprocessors.
  • Each microcontroller (Arduino, PIC Microcontroller, 8051 Microcontroller etc.) performs its own dedicated task. Some of them control engines. Some run dashboard devices.
  • The whole system is actually comprised of several small systems.
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  • Using embedded systems in automotive has reduced the cost factor.
  • It has improved the overall performance and increased functionality.
  • It has also reduced weight and made automobiles more safe and reliable.
  • Applications of automotive embedded systems include:
    • Automatic Stability Control
    • Traction Control System
    • Pre-crash Safety System
    • Airbag
    • Car Navigation System
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  • So you can see that using embedded systems in automobiles is very useful and has increased the functionality of automobiles.

Embedded Systems Application: Home Security System

  • In embedded systems examples, I have another interesting one on my list that is a home security system.
  • Home security systems are used largely today.
  • These systems have several features just as checking for fire or gas leakages, and detecting if someone suspicious tries to enter the house.
  • A Microcontroller is used for controlling all the operations. Sensors give data and if something wrong happens then safety alarms get activated.
  • Sensors used in such systems include gas sensors, smoke sensors, temperature sensors, IR sensors etc.
  • Also, a keypad is included in such systems for entering passwords at the gate.
  • If the correct password is entered then this embedded system opens the gate and if someone tries to enter the wrong password then an alarm is set on and gates remain closed.
  • The output is received from alarms or some display.
  • Here's a block diagram of the Embedded Systems Circuit Diagram(normally used in home automation projects):
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You should also read:
  • The output can also be sent to some distant location.
  • If family members are not present at the home then still they can monitor the activities going on in their house.
  • The home security system is not limited to homes.
  • Such systems can be used at shops, stores and in industries.
  • Almost every industry and office has security systems that can recognize the workers from their faces or identity cards.
  • Home automation system is also one of the examples of embedded systems as the home security system.

Embedded Product: Automatic Washing Machine

  • Daily life examples of embedded systems include automatic washing machines and dryers.
  • Washing clothes is not a difficult task now owing to embedded systems.
  • You just have to add clothes and leave them to the machine. Rest operations are done by your machine itself.
  • Machines have a Microcontroller for controlling all the tasks.
  • Sensors and actuators in this case are level sensors, valves, motors and also a display and keypad to input information.
  • Once you load clothes in machine, the whole process consists of three cycles. Washing, rinsing and spinning.
  • All three cycles are initiated by the machine itself. You just have to enter information for hot or cold water and press the start button.
  • During washing and rinsing cycle, water is added to the drum by pipes.
  • Closing and opening of valves for adding water is checked through level sensors by microcontroller like PIC Microcontroller.
  • Then the rotation of drum starts for pre-set time. After that water is drained out through pipes.
  • During spinning cycle, water is not added and drum rotates for a set time.
  • All the processes are controlled by microcontroller program.
  • The timings for each cycle can be changed through the keypad.
  • So this was another embedded systems examples. Now let’s move towards the next one.

Embedded Operating System

  • Personal digital assistant (PDA) is the next example on my list. It’s an embedded operating system designed for personal use.
  • You can find a lot of personal embedded operating system examples i.e. Mobile Phones, data organizers, PDA etc.
  • Personal Digital Assistant is just like a personal computer in hand. It was used before smartphones came out.
  • This embedded operating system is used as an information manager and has the ability to connect to internet.
  • This embedded operating system has a display mostly touchscreen for the user to interact with the device.
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  • The display is used for entering data, memory card is used for storing data and it is provided with Bluetooth or WiFi for connectivity.
  • Some of the personal digital assistants use keypads instead of touchscreen to input information.
  • This device is very handy in managing and sorting personal information. It is very light in weight and serves multiple functions.
  • Small Embedded computers i.e. Rapberry Pi, Beagle Bone etc. have also been introduced in the market.
  • The next example of Embedded Systems that I am going to tell you is Industrial Robots.

Embedded Systems Applications in Industrial Robots

  • Embedded systems have a lot of applications in industries.
  • Today, every process is being taken towards automation.
  • So industrial robots are very important to mention with embedded systems examples.
  • An industrial robot is an embedded system that comes in a variety of forms and each performs a number of different tasks.
  • Some industrial robots are used for moving parts, tools, materials etc.
  • Some are used in assembly operations while some of them are used in manufacturing.
  • These robots have increased the productivity.
  • They are widely used where precise operations are required or at the places which are difficult to access for humans.
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  • To understand the working of industrial robot as example of embedded systems, I am going to tell you about automated painting robots.
  • Painting robots have a wide application area.
  • They are replacing humans as they require less time for the whole operation and ensure best result.
  • All of the activities are controlled through the program.
  • Timing for the whole process and amount of paint is preset.
  • Assembly robot is another example of industrial robots.
  • The task of such robot is to create an assembly from all the parts.
  • All parts are collected and assembled in correct sequence to form final product.
  • There are a lot of examples of industrial robots.
  • All are good embedded systems examples.
  • Now let’s talk about another type.

Embedded Product: Automated Teller Machine

  • An automated teller machine (ATM) is also an embedded system.
  • It is a computerized device used in banking.
  • You all are already familiar with its operation and use.
  • A customer can access and perform his transactions without going to the bank and meeting some assistant.
  • This machine consists of a card reader for detecting card and accessing information of the person.
  • Also it has a keypad so the user can enter his commands and password.
  • A screen displays information. A printer prints the receipts and cash is received from cash dispenser.
  • A network is present between the bank computer and ATM machine through a host computer.
  • All the data is verified with the bank computer and all transactions are stored in it.
  • All these input and output operations are carried with the help of microcontroller.
  • So this makes a one of the best examples of Embedded Systems.

Embedded Calculator

  • Calculator is also one of the examples of embedded systems.
  • Actually it is one of very earlier embedded system that is used widely.
  • In this example, the function is to take input from the keypad, perform the required operation and show the results on LCD.
  • Embedded Scientific Calculator has a high performance processor.
  • A number of mathematical complex calculations can be performed by these calculators.
  • You can also program such scientific calculators.
  • With such kind of functionality, these calculators are very advance as compared to simple calculators, all because of embedded systems.

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Examples of embedded systems are numerous and it is hard to discuss all of them here. Embedded Systems are used in different fields like:

  • Automobiles
  • Aerospace
  • Telecommunication
  • Consumer Electronics
  • Banking
  • Homes
  • Offices
  • Security Control
  • Academia

Some other examples include:

  • Anti-lock brakes.
  • Auto-focus camera.
  • Teller machines.
  • Automatic toll systems.
  • Automatic transmission.
  • Elevators
  • Power Suppliers
  • Avionic systems etc.
I have just mentioned few of Embedded Products & Applications. Here, I have compiled few examples of Embedded Systems in a single image below and you can see in this image that we are literally slaves of Embedded Systems. :)

That was all from my side, I hope you will enjoy reading these Examples of Embedded Systems and if you don't find any Embedded Systems Examples in above list then you can share it in comments below and I will add it up. So, stay blessed and have fun. Take Care !!! :)