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Digital Control Unit (VR113392)



The Digital Control Unit (DCU), combined with features in Logger Pro, makes control of electrical devices, such as buzzers, lights, motors, pumps, and relays, both straightforward and flexible. The DCU is a great way to introduce hands-on STEM and engineering projects.

Including a DCU with your standard Vernier sensors provides a perfect way to implement Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS) in the classroom. The engaging quality of DCU projects will appeal to students who may not necessarily be drawn to engineering or computer programming. In addition, DCU projects can be simple and fast enough to easily integrate into your sensor-based science curriculum. For those students wanting more, the DCU can be used to create fun, sensor-based projects such as a motion-controlled drinking fountain or an automated blood pressure cuff.

Controlling an electrical device is easy with the DCU and Logger Pro software. The DCU connects to a Vernier interface the same way a digital sensor does; just connect it to a digital port (an LED on the DCU will provide feedback that it is properly connected). There are two easy ways to connect your electrical device to the DCU; connect your electrical device to the DCU header pins or screw the electrical device’s wires into the DCU’s screw terminal. Once the electrical device is attached to the DCU, an external power supply, such as the LabQuest or LabPro power supply (not included), is required to power the device. Start Logger Pro and start using your DCU to run a low-cost STEM activity from simple DC electronic components.

The DCU can also be controlled using National Instruments LabVIEW for Education software. In addition, the DCU can be connected to an Arduino or NI myDAQ.

There are several ways you can use your DCU as a teaching tool.

  • DCU projects are a great way to teach electronics, sensors, feedback and control, and other engineering concepts.
  • DCU projects are a great way to teach programming. The DCU manual provides sample programs that can provide a good place to start. We hope you will take our programs, add to them, and make your own.

Teaching the basics of digital and analog output and control can be accomplished without introducing programming by using the Digital Control Unit with Logger Pro software.

Logger Pro is a general-purpose data-collection program, but it also supports setting up the DCU to turn on or off digital devices when a sensor reading reaches a specified limit. You can set the six digital lines to come on at specified times (Logger Pro software allows independent control of the first 3 lines) or use Logger Pro to control the LabPro analog output line.



  • Output lines: 6 (Logger Pro software allows independent control of the first 3 lines)
  • Maximum current on each line: 600 mA
  • Allowable power supply and output voltage: 5 to 12 volts

Click here to Download User Guide


Sensor Requirements

The Digital Control Unit may require a compatible interface and software. Choose a platform below to see compatible interface and software options.

The Digital Control Unit is fully supported withLabQuest 2, a standalone data logger with built-in graphing and analysis software.

Learn more about LabQuest 2 »

Interface Logger Pro
LabQuest Mini Full support
LabQuest 2 Full support
LabQuest Stream Full support1
Original LabQuest
Full support
Full support


  1. Connect LabQuest Stream via USB. Future software updates will support connection via Bluetooth®technology