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2011 Co-op Design Challenge: LaunchPad

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Texas Instruments 2011 Co-Op Design Challenge

The Texas Instruments Co-Op Design Challenge is a program that offers TI Summer Co-Ops a fun outlet for creativity, a great opportunity to boost networking amongst other TI-ers, and to generate cool new projects & applications.

Each participant will receive a free MSP430 LaunchPad (MSP-EXP430G2) and Capacitive Touch BoosterPack (430BOOST-SENSE1). In addition, participants will have the chance to win awesome prizes such as cash and iPads. Last but not least, the content generated here will benefit all MSP430 users in the future!

I would recommend that your project is in a plug-in board form factor for the LaunchPad (similar to the Capacitive Touch BoosterPack).

Check out submissions from last year's design contest, which was based on the MSP430 eZ430 Chronos watch.

How do I participate?

All you have to do is create and submit a project based on the MSP430 LaunchPad development kit, and post it online by July 28th, 2011 @ 11:59pm CST. The winners will be selected by online voting by TI-ers from all around the world, so make sure your design and submission is as appealing as possible. Video demos, pictures & clean documentation go a long way!

There are no restrictions on the kind of design you create/submit. However, each submission should include source code and any design files needed such as schematics or PCB layouts.

There will be an info session @ June 6th (Dallas site) and June 7th (Houston/Stafford site) to kick off the event. However, you do not have to be present to participate!

To participate, either stop by the info session, or send a message to University Relations ( to get your free development kits.

What are the Rules?

  1. Participants must be an active Co-Op at TI in the US during Summer of 2011
  2. Designs must be based on the MSP430 LaunchPad (MSP-EXP430G2)
    1. Your design must have an MSP430G2xx Value Line microcontroller in it.
    2. Using the Capacitive Touch BoosterPack (430BOOST-SENSE1) is optional.
    3. We suggest that your final project has a "BoosterPack" form-factor. Ideally, something that plugs into the LaunchPad.
  3. If external components are necessary, use TI components where possible.
  4. Entries must be posted in the "Projects" tab @
    1. Must include all design files and source code
    2. Video preferred (not required)
    3. Presentation and completeness is key! Check out the #How_do_I_submit_my_design.3F section for more info!
  5. Teams of 3 or smaller
  6. Designs must be posted in the "Projects" tab @ by July 28, 2011 @ 11:59pm CST.
  7. Judging will be TI-wide and based on 'Best Design' (similar to People's Choice)

How do I submit my design?

All projects should be submitted in the "Projects" tab @

Instructions on how to submit your project are provided here. Also provided is a template for your project submission. Remember, the more complete your solution is, the higher your chances of being noticed during the TI-wide voting period!

Once your project is properly loaded in the "Projects" tab @, please provide a link to your project in the #Project_Submissions section. Simply edit this wiki page. If possible, provide an image along with your Project name.


  • June 1  – Push Invite to co-ops via email. Also post Infolink story inviting co-ops
  • June 6  @ 4-5 PM CST – Information/kickoff meeting with the co-ops - tools will be available @ Dallas site
  • June 7  @ 3-4 PM CST (CONF2 @ ST-Bldg 2) – Information/kickoff meeting with the co-ops - tools will be available @ Stafford/Houstoon site
  • If you're unable to attend the info sessions, send a message to University Relations ( for your kit and info on how to get started.
  • July 27 – Infolink article-push email on voting
  • July 28 11:59pm CST – Last day to upload projects
  • July 29 – Voting Start
  • Aug 1   – Voting end
  • Aug 2   – Awards ceremony @ 11AM (CST) in the Forest Lane Auditorium
  • Aug 8   – Infolink Article on contest/announcing the winners

LaunchPad Design Resources

LaunchPad Documentation


Capacitive Touch BoosterPack Documentation

  • Quick Start Guide for Capacitive Touch BoosterPack | Download Now
  • Capacitive Touch BoosterPack demo source code, GUI & Design Files | Download Now
  • Capacitive Touch Software Library | Learn More
Boost solo.jpg

MSP430G2xx Value Line Microcontroller Documentation

MSP430G solo.JPG

GUI creation tools

Creating a GUI for your project could be another cool way of showing of your designs!

Processing is an easy-to-use, open source tool for creating great-looking Graphical User Interfaces. Processing was used to create the GUI for the Capacitive Touch BoosterPack and the LaunchPad demo. Checkout their website to download Processing. They also have a lot of great tutorials and example code.

Find more information @

The source code and executable for the Launchpad and Capacitive Touch BoosterPack GUIs are linked above.

Grace Graphical User Interface for configuring MSP430 peripherals Grace is a Graphical User Interface for enabling and configuring the various peripherals that are integrated into MSP430F2xx and G2xx Value Line microcontrollers! Users are invited to interact with buttons, drop-down menus and text fields and are guided with useful tips and hover-overs, which are based on MSP430 device datasheet and user guides. This means users can become familiar with the MSP430 device without having to flip through hundreds of pages of documentation.

Learn more @


Design Inspiration

For cool ideas and existing projects, check out the websites below:


  • Q: I don't want to share my iPad, does everyone on the winning team get a prize?
    • A: Yes. There's no need to share your prizes. Everyone will get the same prize.
  • Q: Do I have to be on a team?
    • A: No, individual entries are ok.
  • Q: I couldn't make it to the workshop session, can I still get a free LaunchPad and Capacitive Touch BoosterPack?
    • A: Sure. Just email University Relations ( and ask for one.
  • Q: Where can I get a full, licensed version of CCS or IAR?
    • A: CCS will automatically unlock the full version if you're on the TI network. There's a free, code size limited version of IAR, but you'd have to pay for the full version (so use CCS).
  • Q: I'm stuck and need technical help. Where can I ask a question?
    • A: Post technical question on the E2E Forum for support.
  • Q: I don't have very much programming experience but want to participate. How can I find team members to join up with?
    • A: Show up to the first info session and build your team or contact University Relations for suggestions on teams that may need additional members. 
  • Q: Can any TI Co-Op or intern participate in the design challenge?
    • A: Absolutely! The more the merrier!
  • Q: Where can I find free samples of MSP430G2xx microcontroller devices?
    • MSP430 samples can be found in the Sample Room - Login with your Employee ID and password

Project Submissions

Once your project is uploaded to the "Projects" tab @, link to your project page in the table below! Also provide a short description of your design as well as a picture. 

Vote.jpg Vote for your favorite design here. Voting is for TI employees only. One vote per employee.

Project Name:

Link to your project page


Provide a short description of your MSP430 LaunchPad-based design!


Include a picture of your design!


The goal of this project was to provide users with the capability to play music wherever they go. This product uses two microcontrollers MSP430G2452, the capacitive touch sensor for the MSP430 family and the TI TLC5615. The product works by sensing where there was a touch on the capacitive touch wheel. This location is then translated into one of 15 musical notes of a musical scale and played back to a speaker.

LED Matrix Interactive Periodic Table

The LED Matrix Interactive Periodic Table is a great learning tool for both user and developer. What can be more fun that 118 LEDs controlled by all TI products!? This project demonstrates the Launchpad in two ways. The system is controlled by the launchpad and a capacitive touch booster pack, and the primary microcontroller, the MSP430F5310, has been programmed and debugged exclusively using the Launchpad's Spy-Bi-Wire functionality.

New - Detailed Features Video Capacitive Input Demo Video Fun Soldering Time-Lapse


LaunchPad Learner

The LaunchPad Learner is a low cost, solar powered device designed to be used as an educational tool in impoverished areas of the world.

Video Demonstration of the LaunchPad Learner!

LaunchPad Learner


LightPad lights up a room to the creativity of its user and the rhythm of the music. It is an Android hardware accessory that communicates wirelessly to the phone.                                                        

                                                Check out Video here! 

Mobile Light Effects Controller!  Start a party with your android phone and the LightPad.  

Lightpad screenshot.jpg

 TouchLock is an Launchpad based touch-enabled locking mechanism. Touch away and unlock the future!

Check out the video!

                              Touchlock front2.jpg
Audio Input/Output Switchbox  Audio switchbox capable of switching between four RCA inputs and four RCA outputs. 
Audio switchbox.jpg

LaunchPad Bluetooth Light Controller  Turn on your lights wirelessly! 
BT LaunchPad Light.JPG

RGB LED Coffee Table   Live audio visualizations in your living room!  Table thumbnail.jpg
CardioDroid: Connecting TI and Android  CardioDroid is a TI-powered solution to low-power and low-cost wireless Android communication and interfacing with any TI processor.

We have created a universal way for any TI processor to communicate and interface with Android OS and a framework (both TI side and and Android side) for customers to expand development to endless application.


Office Automator   Using infrared detectors, the power in you office/cube can be switched on and the amount of people in your cube/office can be determined which will then set off an alarm if too many people are present.  

MSP43-oTouch   MSP430 Launchpad touch screen interface! 


 Check out our video! 

 SensorBlast combines the low power MSP430 microcontroller and IR technology to implement a   touch-less electronic keyboard.


  Ultimate security at your fingertips!

Emergency notifications via text message and email
Autonomously responds to threats
Easy to use system tray application
Full source and schematics available

Demo video

Pythagoras A drawing delta robot. Video!
Pythagoras, the Drawing Delta Robot
Fun with LEDs and MSP430 and Cap Touch BoosterPack This project has three sub projects. Each one builds on the other. They are cheap and easy to implement.


1. CountUp.c counts from 0 to 9 repeatability by using leds to display the count

2. LEDdriver.c receives UART commands from the Capacitive Touch BoosterPack demo code. When it receives, it mimics the led display on the Capacitive Touch BoosterPack.

3. CircleGame.c receives UART commands from the Capacitive Touch BoosterPack demo code. The leds turn on one at a time and in such a way that the looks like it is going around in a circle. When the center button on the Capacitive Touch BoosterPack is pushed, the light stops moving. If the light stops on the center led, then you have "won" and all the outside leds flash on then off. If the light stops on one of the other leds, then you have "lost" and the leds turn on in a counter clockwise sequence. The game resets when the Capacitive Touch BoosterPack goes to sleep or an outside button is pressed.