System Board 6562

MAXREFDES1150: Smart Pill Bottle

 Download Full Reference Design

The MAXREFDES1150 is Maxim’s smart pill bottle design for medical and broad IoT applications. This design uses an accurate weight scale and modern IoT communications to provide a complete system for patients and doctors to accurately and safely monitor their medicine intake. Furthermore, users can extend this concept to any consumable requiring refill and/or replenishment. The MAXREFDES1150 accepts an initial load of pills or tablets. The application then prompts the user for the quantity of pills and the frequency and amount of each dose. Automatic measurements validate that medicine is taken at the right time, or notifications are sent if medicine has not been taken. The design also includes an audible buzzer if the smart pill bottle is left on its side or upside down.

The 16-bit ADC MAX11213 lies at the heart of MAXREFDES1150, providing accurate measurement of the pill bottle load cell. The design conveniently works with Arduino and Arm® Mbed Enabled™ platforms and Bluetooth low energy (BLE)-enabled modules. The MAXREFDES1150 is suitable for a wide variety of IoT measurement applications requiring accurate analog-signal measurement and communication. It can be powered with a USB port to an Mbed® platform and then to the MAXREFDES1150 board, which is powered by the MAX6071 reference chip, so it can enhance the system accuracy. The reference design also includes an Android APK with HMI technology. The APK can be used to configure the pills parameter and be updated, if needed.

The MAXREFDES1150 reference design block diagram demonstrates how it works. When the pill bottle is placed on the MAXREFDES1150 board’s load-cell sensor, it captures and measures the results, then updates them to the APK. The MAXREFDES1150 includes microcontroller source files to enable developers to quickly evaluate and customize the design for their specific applications with minimal firmware or hardware changes. The board is designed in a compact form factor for rapid evaluation or installation.

Key Features

  • Low Power
  • High Accuracy
  • Bluetooth Module
  • Mbed Platform
MAXREFDES1150 Hardware Enlarge+

This board is not available for purchase.

Designed, Built, Tested

This document describes the hardware shown in Figure 1. It provides a detailed systematictechnical guide to design a smart pill box system, includingload cell, signal conditioner, ADC and related firmware, APP. The system can measure less than 50mg pills with repeat accuracy. The system has been built and tested, details of which follow later in this document.

Note: The MAXREFDES1150 replaces the MAXREFDES141.

Design Resources


16-Bit, Single-Channel, Ultra-Low Power, Delta-Sigma ADC with Programmable Gain and GPIO

  • Minimize Power Consumption with Ultra-Low Power Dissipation
  • Improve Measurement Quality with Excellent DC/AC Accuracy
  • Lower System Cost with Integrated Functionality