Qwiic Accelerometer (MMA8452Q) Hookup Guide

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Contributors: Englandsaurus
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Introduction

Freescale's MMA8452Q is a smart, low-power, three-axis, capacitive micro-machined accelerometer with 12 bits of resolution. It's perfect for any project that needs to sense orientation or motion. We've taken that accelerometer and stuck it on a Qwiic-Enabled breakout board, in order to make interfacing with the tiny, QFN package a bit easier. It's part of SparkFun's Qwiic system, so you won't have to do any soldering to figure out how things are oriented.

SparkFun Triple Axis Accelerometer Breakout - MMA8452Q (Qwiic)

SparkFun Triple Axis Accelerometer Breakout - MMA8452Q (Qwiic)

SEN-14587
$12.50
1

The MMA8452Q is a rock-solid, feature rich, 3-axis accelerometer. It supports three, selectable sensing ranges: ± 2g, 4g, or 8g. It also sports features like orientation detection, single and double-tap sensing, and low power modes. It's a digital sensor -- communicating over a Qwiic enabled I2C interface -- so you'll get reliable, noise-free data over a Qwiic enabled I2C port.

In this hookup guide, we'll connect our sensor up to our microcontroller of choice and read the X, Y, and Z accelerometer channels to figure out how we are accelerating in those directions. Then, we'll figure out how to use orientation detection to figure out what orientation the sensor is in.

Required Materials

To get started, you'll need a microcontroller to, well, control everything.

SparkFun RedBoard - Programmed with Arduino

SparkFun RedBoard - Programmed with Arduino

DEV-13975
$19.95
47
SparkFun ESP32 Thing

SparkFun ESP32 Thing

DEV-13907
$21.95
68
Particle Photon (Headers)

Particle Photon (Headers)

WRL-13774
$19.00
32

Raspberry Pi 3

DEV-13825
92 Retired

Now to get into the Qwiic ecosystem, the key will be one of the following Qwiic shields to match your preference of microcontroller:

SparkFun Qwiic HAT for Raspberry Pi

SparkFun Qwiic HAT for Raspberry Pi

DEV-14459
$6.50
4
SparkFun Qwiic Shield for Arduino

SparkFun Qwiic Shield for Arduino

DEV-14352
$6.95
6
SparkFun Qwiic Shield for Photon

SparkFun Qwiic Shield for Photon

DEV-14477
$6.50

You will also need a Qwiic cable to connect the shield to your accelerometer, choose a length that suits your needs.

Qwiic Cable - 100mm

Qwiic Cable - 100mm

PRT-14427
$1.50
Qwiic Cable - 500mm

Qwiic Cable - 500mm

PRT-14429
$1.95
1
Qwiic Cable - 50mm

Qwiic Cable - 50mm

PRT-14426
$0.95

Qwiic Cable - 200mm

PRT-14428

Suggested Reading

If you aren't familiar with the Qwiic system, we recommend reading here for an overview.

Qwiic Connect System
Qwiic Connect System

We would also recommend taking a look at the following tutorials if you aren't familiar with them.

I2C

An introduction to I2C, one of the main embedded communications protocols in use today.

Qwiic Shield for Arduino & Photon Hookup Guide

Get started with our Qwiic ecosystem with the Qwiic shield for Arduino or Photon.