Lesson 27 – ADXL345 Three Axis Acceleration Module


  1. Before you start working with any of the tutorials in this series please make sure you have completed the following tasks –
    1. Downloaded and installed the Arduino IDE.
    2. Are able to connect to the Arduino IDE from your computer
    3. Have been successful in uploading a simple (e.g. Blink LED’s) example programs (that comes with the Arduino IDE) onto your Arduino UNO board
  2. If you haven’t installed the Arduino IDE please head back to the first tutorial and make sure you’ve gone through each of the steps involved.
  3. Once you’ve sorted all of the above you are ready to move onto the next tutorial.


In this experiment, we use an Arduino to drive a common anode, 4-digit, 7-segment LED display. For LED display, current-limiting resistors are indispensable. There are two wiring method for Current-limiting resistor. One is to connect one resistor for each anode, 4 in total for d1-d4 anode. An advantage for this method is that it requires fewer resistors, only 4. But it cannot maintain consistent brightness, 1 the brightest, 8, the least bright.

Here’s the hardware you will need for the tutorials –

  1. Arduino Board x 1
  2. 1 x ADXL345 sensor
  3. 1 x breadboard
  4. Breadboard jumper wire x 10

You will find fritzing diagrams below outlining circuit connections for both the Arduino Uno and the Arduino Mega 2560.


Let’s have a look at the code for the tutorial.

Please Note – The line of code that reads #include is incomplete. It should read –

#include <Wire.h>

The circuit:
 VCC: 5V
 GND: ground
 This example code is in the public domain.
// Registers for ADXL345
#define ADXL345_ADDRESS (0xA6 >> 1)  // address for device is 8 bit but shift to the
                                     // right by 1 bit to make it 7 bit because the
                                     // wire library only takes in 7 bit addresses
#define ADXL345_REGISTER_XLSB (0x32)
int accelerometer_data[3];
// void because this only tells the cip to send data to its output register
// writes data to the slave's buffer
void i2c_write(int address, byte reg, byte data) {
  // Send output register address
  // Connect to device
  // Send data
  Wire.write(data); //low byte
// void because using pointers
// microcontroller reads data from the sensor's input register
void i2c_read(int address, byte reg, int count, byte* data) {
  // Used to read the number of data received
  int i = 0;
  // Send input register address
  // Connect to device
  // Connect to device
  // Request data from slave
  // Count stands for number of bytes to request
  Wire.requestFrom(address, count);
  while(Wire.available()) // slave may send less than requested
    char c = Wire.read(); // receive a byte as character
    data[i] = c;
void init_adxl345() {
  byte data = 0;
  i2c_write(ADXL345_ADDRESS, 0x31, 0x0B);   // 13-bit mode  +_ 16g
  i2c_write(ADXL345_ADDRESS, 0x2D, 0x08);   // Power register
  i2c_write(ADXL345_ADDRESS, 0x1E, 0x00);   // x
  i2c_write(ADXL345_ADDRESS, 0x1F, 0x00);   // Y
  i2c_write(ADXL345_ADDRESS, 0x20, 0x05);   // Z
  // Check to see if it worked!
  i2c_read(ADXL345_ADDRESS, 0X00, 1, &data);
    Serial.println("it work Success");
    Serial.println("it work Fail");
void read_adxl345() {
  byte bytes[6];
  // Read 6 bytes from the ADXL345
  i2c_read(ADXL345_ADDRESS, ADXL345_REGISTER_XLSB, 6, bytes);
  // Unpack data
  for (int i=0;i<3;++i) {
    accelerometer_data[i] = (int)bytes[2*i] + (((int)bytes[2*i + 1]) << 8);
// initialise and start everything
void setup() {
  for(int i=0; i<3; ++i) {
    accelerometer_data[i]  = 0;
void loop() {
  Serial.print("ACCEL: ");
  Serial.print(float(accelerometer_data[0])*3.9/1000);//3.9mg/LSB scale factor in 13-bit mode

Download the above code to the controller board and see the result. Open the serial monitor to display the triaxial acceleration of sensor and its status, as the graph shown below.


This development track requires an investment a bit of hardware. See below for details –

  1. Arduino IDE –
    1. You will need to download and install the Arduino development IDE.
    2. The approach to installation, configuration, setup of the Arduino IDE is covered in our tutorials.
  2. Arduino Uno, Sensors, etc. –
    1. You will need to purchase the Super Learning Kit for Arduino from OzToyLib.
    2. The Arduino Advent kit has all the sensors you need to perform the tutorials covered in this development track.
    3. If you do not have an Arduino Uno or Arduino Mega 2560 you might want to head over to Arduino boards and pick one up now.

The Super Learning Kit for the Arduino kit has all the sensors you need to perform the tutorials covered in this development track.

About the Super Learning Kit for Arduino

The Super Learning Starter Kit for Arduino comes packed with ~35+ different electronic bits (Sensors, LEDs, switches, LCD, servo, etc.) and can be purchased with either the Keyestudio UNO R3 or the Keyestudio Mega 2560 board. The Keyestudio Arduino boards can be used to interface with the different electronic bits i.e. sensors, LED’s, switches, servos, etc. included in the starter kit. The starter kit for the Keyestudio Uno R3 offers a great opportunity to explore the world of electronics using the Arduino Development Platform. Interact with the real world through the various sensors, create innovative projects, learn how to program the micro:bit to read data from the sensors and perform certain actions. The starter kit for the Arduino is a great way to dive into the awesome world of electronics and get started with your own STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Math) learning journey.

The Arduino advanced study kit walks you through the basics of using the Arduino in a hands-on way. You’ll learn the fundamentals of electronics and working on the Arduino through building several creative projects. The kit includes a selection of the most common and useful electronic components with a book of 32 projects. Starting the basics of electronics, to more complex projects, the kit will get you interacting with the physical world using sensor and actuators. Along with the kit you get access to detailed tutorials and wiring diagrams.

You can purchase the Super Learning Kit for Arduino from OzToyLib.

About the Arduino UNO

The Arduino UNO is the most used and documented board of the whole Arduino family and very easy to setup, play with. The Arduino UNO is a microcontroller board based on the ATmega328 . The Arduino UNO has 14 digital input/output pins (of which 6 can be used as PWM outputs), 6 analog inputs, a 16 MHz ceramic resonator, a USB connection, a power jack, an ICSP header, and a reset button. Here’s a listing of the some of the features of the Arduino UNO –

  1. Microcontroller: ATmega328
  2. Operating Voltage: 5V
  3. Input Voltage (recommended): 7-12V
  4. Input Voltage (limits): 6-20V
  5. Digital I/O Pins: 14 (of which 6 provide PWM output)
  6. Analog Input Pins: 6
  7. DC Current per I/O Pin: 40 mA
  8. DC Current for 3.3V Pin: 50 mA
  9. Flash Memory: 32 KB of which 0.5 KB used by bootloader
  10. SRAM: 2 KB (ATmega328)
  11. EEPROM: 1 KB (ATmega328)
  12. Clock Speed: 16 MHz

Arduino is an open-source, prototyping platform and its simplicity makes it ideal for hobbyists to use as well as professionals. The Arduino UNO contains everything needed to support the microcontroller; simply connect it to a computer with a USB cable or power it with a AC-to-DC adapter or battery to get started. The Arduino UNO differs from all preceding boards in that it does not use the FTDI USB-to-serial driver chip. Instead, it features the Atmega8U2 microcontroller chip programmed as a USB-to-serial converter. “Uno” means one in Italian and is named to mark the upcoming release of Arduino 1.0. The Arduino Uno and version 1.0 will be the reference versions of Arduno, moving forward. The Uno is the latest in a series of USB Arduino boards, and the reference model for the Arduino platform.

You can read more about the Arduino here – www.arduino.cc.