TFMini - Micro LiDAR Module Hookup Guide

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Contributors: bboyho
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Introduction

Heads up! This tutorial is for the TFMini that outputs serial data via UART. If you are using the Qwiic enabled TFMini that outputs serial data via I2C [ SEN-14786 ], please refer to the TFMini - Micro LiDAR Module (Qwiic) Hookup Guide.

The TFMini is a ToF (Time of Flight) LiDAR sensor capable of measuring the distance to an object as close as 30 cm and as far as 12 meters! The TFMini allows you to integrate LiDAR into applications traditionally reserved for smaller sensors such as the SHARP GP-series infrared rangefinders. In this tutorial, you will learn how to connect to the TFMini using an Arduino microcontroller.

TFMini - Micro LiDAR Module

SEN-14588
6 Retired

Required Materials

To follow along with this tutorial, you will need the following materials. You may not need everything though depending on what you have. Add it to your cart, read through the guide, and adjust the cart as necessary.

SparkFun Logic Level Converter - Bi-Directional

SparkFun Logic Level Converter - Bi-Directional

BOB-12009
$2.95
111
SparkFun RedBoard - Programmed with Arduino

SparkFun RedBoard - Programmed with Arduino

DEV-13975
$19.95
47
Breadboard - Self-Adhesive (White)

Breadboard - Self-Adhesive (White)

PRT-12002
$4.95
42
Break Away Headers - Straight

Break Away Headers - Straight

PRT-00116
$1.50
20
Jumper Wires Standard 7" M/M - 30 AWG (30 Pack)

Jumper Wires Standard 7" M/M - 30 AWG (30 Pack)

PRT-11026
$2.25
20
SparkFun USB Mini-B Cable - 6 Foot

SparkFun USB Mini-B Cable - 6 Foot

CAB-11301
$3.95
3

Tools

You will need a soldering iron, solder, and general soldering accessories.

Solder Lead Free - 100-gram Spool

Solder Lead Free - 100-gram Spool

TOL-09325
$8.95
7
Weller WLC100 Soldering Station

Weller WLC100 Soldering Station

TOL-14228
$67.95
2

Suggested Reading

If you aren't familiar with the following concepts, we recommend checking out these tutorials before continuing.

Serial Communication

Asynchronous serial communication concepts: packets, signal levels, baud rates, UARTs and more!

Installing an Arduino Library

How do I install a custom Arduino library? It's easy! This tutorial will go over how to install an Arduino library using the Arduino Library Manager. For libraries not linked with the Arduino IDE, we will also go over manually installing an Arduino library.

Logic Levels

Learn the difference between 3.3V and 5V devices and logic levels.