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Microcontroller Based Dot Matrix Display

Dot matrix display using microcontroller AT89C51

ROLL NO. 9582
Bachelor of Engineering in Telecommunication Engineering
National University of Modern Languages (NUML)
H-9, Islamabad, Pakistan

Abstract— Now days microcontroller is used every where

we can control different hardware with microcontroller
in this project I used [1] microcontroller of ATMEL
whose name is AT89C51 for display any text data it can
either alphabets or number on Dot Matrix display.
Output of microcontroller is not enough to drive the Dot
Matrix display so that I use Transistors NEC 772 for
rows drivers and ULN 2803 for column drivers.
[2]Microcontroller just sends 7-bits data after specific
time and sending data like burst on first column of
display I use Serial In Parallel Out (SIPO) shift register
SN74HC164N which is synchronized by microcontroller
shifts data from first row to second then second to third Figure No. 1: Integrated circuit (AT89C51)
and so on to the last fortieth column then jumps back to
the first one. First I describe the functionality of all II. INTERNAL ARCHITECTURE OF AT89C51
components then I pasted block diagram as well as
circuit diagram in this report. You can found all
information about this [4] project as after reading this [6]The internal architecture of AT89C51 consists of
report you will completely understood the function and following parts:
purpose of this project. • It provides many functions (CPU, RAM, ROM,
I/O, interrupt logic, timer, etc.) in a single package.
• 8-bit ALU, Accumulator and Registers; hence it is
I. INTRODUCTION (AT89C51) an 8-bit microcontroller.
• 8-bit data bus can access 8 bits of data in one
The AT89C51 is a low-power, high- operation.
performance CMOS 8-bit microcomputer with 4K bytes of • 16-bit address bus can access 216 memory
Flash programmable and erasable read only memory locations, 64 KB (65536 locations) each of RAM
(PEROM). [3]The device is manufactured using ATMEL and ROM.
high-density nonvolatile memory technology and is • On-chip RAM, 128 bytes (data memory).
compatible with the industry-standard MCS-51 instruction • On-chip ROM 4 KB which is program memory.
set and pin out. The on-chip Flash allows the program • Four byte bi-directional input/output port.
memory to be reprogrammed in-system or by a conventional • UART (serial port).
nonvolatile memory programmer. By combining a versatile • Two 16-bit Counter/timers.
8-bit CPU with Flash on a monolithic chip, the ATMEL
• Two-level interrupt priority.
AT89C51 is a powerful microcomputer which provides a
highly-flexible and cost-effective solution to many
embedded control applications. [5]There are 40 pins of
microcontroller AT89C51, Each pin have it own function.

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• Size Range: 0.7", 1", 1.2"1.5", 1.8", 2", and 4".
• Colors available: Red, Green, Yellow, Blue, White
and Duel color (red & green).

B. Display board

• Display board size = 14.4’’ x 1.8”

• No. of pixel in board = 280
• No. of LED’s in a board = 40 x 7 = 280
• Display color = single color (Red)
• Input voltage = AC 220V
• Frequency = 50/ 60 HZ
• Viewing angle = 60-80degree
Figure No. 2: Microcontroller AT89C51 (Internal


Special Function Registers (SFRs) are given in the figure

given below. Each of these registers as well as each bit they
include, has its name, address in the scope of RAM and
precisely defined purpose such as timer control, interrupt
control, serial communication control etc. Even though Figure No. 4: Front side of display board
there are 128 memory locations intended to be occupied by
them, the basic core, shared by all types of AT89C51 V. SHIFT REGISTER SN74HC164N
microcontrollers, has only 21 such registers. Rest of
locations is intentionally left unoccupied in order to enable
the manufacturers to further develop microcontrollers [8]The MC54/74HC164 is an 8–bit, serial–input to parallel–
keeping them compatible with the previous versions. It also output shift register. Two serial data inputs, A1 and A2, are
enables programs written a long time ago for provided so that one input may be used as a data enable.
microcontrollers which are out of production now to be used Data is entered on each rising edge of the clock.
• Outputs Directly Interface to CMOS, NMOS, and
IV. DISPLAY OF PROJECT • Operating Voltage Range: 2 to 6 V
• Low Input Current: 1 mA
[7]The Rolling display is prepared using 5 X 7 Matrix LEDs • Chip Complexity: 244 FETs or 61 Equivalent
which means LEDs are arranged in a pattern consisting of 5 Gates
columns and 7 rows. Here we have used 8 characters which
mean 8 matrices. Total numbers of columns are 40 and rows
are 7. The actual physical dimension of single matrix is 3.5
inch by 1.8 inch, so dimension of complete display is 3.5
inch by 14.4 inch

Figure No. 3: Dot Matrix display (7 x 5)

Figure No. 5: Logic Diagram of SN74HC164N
A. Dot matrix display

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It has ground on pin number 9 and positive volts on pin [11]The LM78XX series of three terminal positive
number 10 remaining 8 are inputs and 8 outputs it just invert regulators are available in the TO-220 package and with
the input and amplifies the current of input to drive the several fixed output voltages, making them useful in a wide
outputs. range of applications. Each type employs internal current
limiting, thermal shut down and safe operating area
[9]It has just inverters and diodes inside it to invert the protection, making it essentially indestructible. If adequate
input. I use it at outputs of shift registers those have not an heat sinking is provided, they can deliver over 1A output
ability to drive the display board and I also want invert current. Although designed primarily as fixed voltage
output so that this was the best choice to use in between regulators, these devices can be used with external
shift register and display board. components to obtain adjustable voltages and currents.

Figure No. 8: Regulator IC LM-7805


Figure No. 6: Pin Configuration of ULN 2803
[12]The Rolling display is prepared using 5 X 7 Matrix
VII. TRANSISTOR NEC 772 LED which means LED are arranged in a pattern consisting
of 5 columns and 7 rows. Here we have used 8 characters
which mean 8 matrices. Total numbers of columns are 40
[10]These transistors are used as a switch in cutoff mode if and rows are 7. The actual physical dimension of single
its base is low emitter to collector junction become short matrix is 3.5 inch by 1.8 inch, so dimension of complete
and vice versa. display is 3.5 inch by 14.4 inch. Transistors NEC 772 for
rows drivers and ULN 2803 for column drivers.
I take output from collector and give positive volts at
emitter if its base is low emitter to collector junction
become short and positive volts shifted to collector as like
close switch. If its base is high emitter to collector junction
become open and positive volts does not shifted to collector
as like open switch.

Figure No. 7: Transistor NEC 772 Figure No. 9: Block diagram

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X. WORKING Figure No. 11: Circuit Diagram

Microcontroller send 7-bit data using port 2 from pin 21 to CONCLUSIONS

27, these bits are inverted and given to transistors 772 which
again invert them also amplifies to drive rows of dot matrix
display. It is concluded that from this project I shall gain lot of
knowledge about microcontroller and our mind will going to
On the other hand when 7-bit data comes on first column of set for final project and we must gain knowledge about
display it moved to next column then next data comes, rows different components related to electronics were used in this
and columns are synchronized with each other if they are project. I shall be very thanking full to our respected teacher
not synchronized output is not correct and misplaced after who helped us in this project.
some times and we see undefined output.

Serial-In Parallel-Out (SIPO) shift register is used to shift

the data from column to column for which I used
MC54/74HC164 which is an 8–bit, serial–input to parallel–
output shift register. Next to this ULN 2803 is used which
invert the output of shift register and amplifies to drive
columns of display.

A. Control unit

This unit sifts data serial to parallel, select the matrices

sequentially, control unit gets input from Microcontroller
and then gives output to individual column of matrix. Only
one column is selected at a time then shifted to the next one
so as to display an output.

B. Control circuit diagram

Some other connections in diagram one is crystal oscillator

across pin number 18 and 19 with 30pf capacitors shown in
diagram. Reset pin 9 is active low because to set the
controller if it is logic high microcontroller will reset. Pin
number 31 is enable pin to enable the internal memory of
microcontroller if it is low microcontroller take data from
external memory but if it is active high then it takes data
from internal memory.

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[1] Muhammad Ali Mazidi and Janice Gillispie Mazidi, The 8051 microcontroller and embedded systems.

[2] Myke Predko,Michael Predko, Programming and customizing the 8051 microcontroller, ISBN 0-07-134192-7,

ISBN 0-07-134195-1.

[3] Kenneth J. Ayala, 3rd Edition, The 8051 microcontroller.

[4] Dogan Ibrahim, Microcontroller projects in C for the 8051, ISBN 0-7506-4640-3.

[5] Internal Architecture of Microcontroller, www.mikroe.com/en/books/8051book/ch2/images/01.gif.

[6] Pin configuration of microcontoller 89c51, http://www.datasheetdir.com/89C51+8051-Microcontrollers.

[7] Dot Matrix display, http://leddisplay.hisupplier.com/product-259086-5x7-led-dot-matrix-display.html.

[8] Serial In Parallel Out shift register, MC54/74HC164, http://www.seeedstudio.com/depot/74hc164-8bit-parallelout-


[9] ULN 2803, http://www.8051projects.net/forum-t9382-post.html.

[10] Transistor NEC 772, used as a switch in cutoff mode, http://upteks.en.alibaba.com/product/258113208-


[11] Voltage Regulator 7805, http://www.tipidpc.com/viewtopic.php?tid=147525.

[12] Block diagram, Rolling display using matrix LEDs, www.projectsof8051.com/projects/06-rolling-display.

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