Can You Program Arduino With Python?

Can You Program Arduino With Python?

Python is a versatile language that can be used for a variety of purposes. It can be used for scripting, developing web applications, or even creating desktop applications. But did you know that you can also use Python to program Arduino? In this article, we will explore the possibility of programming Arduino with Python and provide some useful tips along the way!

What is the Arduino Platform

The Arduino platform is an open-source electronics prototyping platform based on easy-to-use hardware and software. It’s intended for artists, designers, hobbyists, and anyone interested in creating interactive objects or environments.

The Arduino platform includes both hardware and software products. The hardware consists of an open-source hardware board designed around an ATmega328 microcontroller, with a wide range of input and output pins. The software consists of a development environment that runs on your computer, used to write and upload code to the microcontroller board.

Electron Bot Quote

In my opinion, the Arduino platform is a fantastic tool for creative individuals, whether you’re an artist, designer, or just a curious hobbyist. Its combination of user-friendly hardware and software empowers you to build interactive projects by easily interfacing with sensors and actuators. Programming Arduino opens up a world of possibilities for innovation and experimentation.

Richard Clark, Audio Engineer, Boston

Arduino senses the environment by receiving inputs from many sensors, and affects its surroundings by controlling lights, motors, and other actuators. You can tell your Arduino what to do by sending a set of instructions to the microcontroller on the board. This is when programming comes in.

What is the Arduino Platform

An Arduino can also be compared to a simple computer that can run one program at a time. Microcontrollers are used in everyday objects such as cars, toasters, and remote controls. They’re also utilized in industrial applications and scientific experiments. [1]

What Software Does Arduino Use

There are several ways you can program an Arduino using Python. You can use a stand alone Python interpreter, or you can use a Python IDE. The programming language used for Arduino is called Processing, which is based on Java. It’s designed to be easy to learn for artists and designers, with minimal syntax and an intuitive interface. Processing is similar to C++ in many ways, but it’s simpler and easier to learn.

You can, however, use other languages with Arduino by using what are called “wrappers”. A wrapper is basically a layer that translates one language into another.

There are several wrappers available for programming Arduino with Python. The most popular ones seem to be pyFirmata and pymata-aio. Installing a wrapper is usually as simple as installing the corresponding Python module using pip. [2]

Programing Arduino With Python

Now that we know a little more about the Arduino platform and what software it uses, let’s get into how you can program Arduino with Python. Luckily, you don’t need to be an experienced programmer to do this. Just knowing the basics of Python is enough.

Install Python on your computer

If you still don’t have Python installed on your computer, now is the time to do it.

To install it, head to the Python website, click on the download button for your operating system and follow the instructions. That’s it! You’ve now installed Python on your computer.

We recommend you to install the latest version of Python, however, any version of Python from 3.0 onwards will work fine.

If you’re not sure whether you have Python installed or not, open your terminal (Mac/Linux) or command prompt (Windows) and type “python”. If it returns something like this “Python IDLE”, it means that you do have it installed.

Assemble Arduino circuit

Next, you will need to assemble an Arduino circuit. The circuit will depend on what project you’re working on.

Assemble Arduino circuit

For example, if you’re making an LED blink, you’ll need to connect an LED and a resistor to one of the Arduino’s digital output pins. If you’re reading data from a sensor, you’ll need to connect the sensor to one of the Arduino’s analog input pins.

Install Arduino IDE

The next thing you need to do is install the Arduino IDE. The Arduino IDE is a cross-platform application (for Windows, macOS, and Linux) that allows you to write code and upload it to the board. It also includes a library of functions for working with the various inputs and outputs on the board.

Connect Arduino to Your PC

Once your circuit is assembled, you will need to connect your Arduino to your computer. To do this, use a USB cable. The USB cable will provide both power and data transfer between the Arduino and your computer. Most Arduino boards are compatible with USB Type-A cables. In some cases you can use a USB mini or micro cable.

Configure the board

Now that your Arduino is connected to your computer, it’s time to configure the board.

This step is important because it allows you to select the right board and port so that your computer can communicate with the Arduino.

First, you will need to determine the COM port that your Arduino is using. To do this, open the Device Manager. In Windows, you can access it by going to Control Panel > System and Security > System > Device Manager.

In the Device Manager, expand the Ports (COM & LPT) section. You should see a COM port called “USB Serial Port (COMxx)”, where xx is a number. This is the COM port that your Arduino is using. Make a note of it for later use. Keep in mind that number can change if you connect your Arduino to a different USB port.

Next, open Arduino IDE and go to the Tools menu. In the Board submenu, select the board that you’re using. For most Arduino boards, this will be “Arduino Uno”.

In the Port submenu, select the COM port that you noted down earlier.

Upload the Blink example sketch

Now that you’ve set up your board, it’s time to upload a sketch. A sketch is a program that runs on the Arduino. There are many example sketches available in the Arduino IDE. For our purposes, we will use the Blink example.

To access it, go to File > Examples > Basics > Blink.

This will open the Blink example in a new window.

Upload the Blink example sketch

To upload it to your Arduino, click on the Upload button in the toolbar (it looks like an arrow pointing to the right).

If everything goes well, you should see the LED on your Arduino board blink once every second!

This example shows the programming basics: how to turn an LED on and off. But of course, you can do much more with Arduino and Python.

In the next section, we’ll show you how to use the Arduino IDE’s Serial Monitor to control an LED using Python. [3], [4], [5]

Install PySerial

Now that you’ve seen how to upload a sketch to your Arduino, it’s time to learn how to control it using Python. One popular option is to use the PySerial library. This library allows you to communicate with Arduino over a serial connection.

You can install PySerial by following the instructions on its website, keep the settings as default.

To see if the installation was successful, open your Python interpreter and type “import serial”. If it doesn’t return an error, it means that PySerial was installed correctly.

Write a Python Script to turn the LED on and off

Now that you’ve installed PySerial, it’s time to write your first Python script. You will need to use REPL for that. REPL stands for “read eval print loop”. It allows you to type in commands and see the results immediately.

To open REPL, enter >python at the Anaconda Prompt.

Now, it’s time to write the script. First, we need to import the PySerial library. We will also need to import a time library so that we can add delays in our code.

import serial

import time

Now, we need to create a Serial object. This object will be used to communicate with Arduino. We need to specify the COM port and the baud rate. The COM port is the port where your Arduino is connected.

>>> ser = serial.Serial(‘COM4’, 9600)  # open serial port

>>> time.sleep(2)                      # wait 2 seconds


‘COM4′ # again change it to match your case

>>> ser.write(b’H’)

# LED turns on

>>> ser.write(b’L’)

# LED turns off

>>> ser.write(b’H’)

# LED turns on

>>> ser.write(b’L’)

# LED turns off

>>> ser.close()

>>> exit()

After you are done, be sure to enter ser.close() command.

Now we can run the following Python code to make the LED blink 10 times.

ser = serial.Serial(‘COM4′, 9800, timeout=1)


for i in range(10):

ser.writelines(b’H’)   # send a byte

time.sleep(0.5)        # wait 0.5 seconds

ser.writelines(b’L’)   # send a byte



We set the baud rate to 9800 bits per second for the sake of explanation, but you can change it to a different value if you want.

In the fourth line, we add a delay of two seconds. This is to give the Arduino time to reset before we start sending it commands.

In the fifth line, we use the write() method to send a byte to the Arduino. The byte we’re sending is ‘H’.

This will turn on the LED connected to pin 13 on the Arduino board.

In the sixth line, we again use the write()method but this time we’re sending a byte ‘L’. This will turn off the LED connected to pin 13 on the Arduino board. You should see the LED stop blinking now.

Finally, in the seventh line, we close the Serial port using the close() method. [3]

Use a Firmata sketch

Another option is to use the Firmata protocol with pyFirmata. This approach requires you to upload a sketch (program) to your Arduino that sets it up to communicate with Firmata. You can then write Python code on your computer that talks to the sketch running on your Arduino.

Use a Firmata sketch

This is a great option if you want to use sensors attached to your Arduino in a Python program or if you want to control an actuator connected to your Arduino from a Python program.

To use Firmata with your Arduino, you need to upload the StandardFirmata sketch to your Arduino. You can find this sketch in the Arduino IDE under File > Examples > Firmata > StandardFirmata.

Electron Bot Quote

I find using the Firmata protocol with pyFirmata to be a convenient and versatile method for Arduino interaction. Uploading the StandardFirmata sketch to the Arduino and using Python via pyFirmata opens up possibilities to integrate sensors and actuators seamlessly. It simplifies communication between the Arduino and Python, making projects like LED blinking straightforward.

Thomas Martinez, Circuit Designer, Seattle

Once you’ve uploaded the StandardFirmata sketch to your Arduino, you need to install the pyFirmata Python module. You can do this using pip:

pip install pyfirmata

With pyFirmata installed, you can now write a Python program that talks to your Arduino over a USB serial connection. The following code will cause a LED connected to pin 13 on your Arduino to blink.

from time import sleep

board = Arduino(‘COM4’) # Insert your own port here

print(“Start blinking D13”)

while True:[13].write(1)





Can Python interact with Arduino?

Yes, Python can interact with Arduino using a standard USB cable. The connection between the two is typically made through a serial port, although other options are available.

Python can be used to write simple programs that control the movement of servo motors or turn on/off LEDs. It can also be used to create more complex applications that read sensors and perform data logging or even create graphical user interfaces (GUI).

What programming language does Arduino use?

Arduino uses a variation of C++ called Processing. However, you can program Arduino using other high-level programming languages such as Python.

There are many benefits to programming Arduino with Python. For example, Python is a very versatile language that can be used for everything from web development to scientific computing. Additionally, Python has a large and active community which can offer support and guidance.

How do I transfer data from Arduino to Python?

The first step is to open the Serial Monitor in the Arduino IDE. Then, set your baud rate to match the baud rate you’ve specified in your Python code. Once the Serial Monitor is open, you can type in any data you want and hit “Send.” The data will be sent to your Python program!

If you want to send data from Python to Arduino, simply use the serial.write() function. This will take any string or number and send it over the serial connection! Just make sure that your Arduino is expecting this data – if it’s not, strange things might happen.

Useful Video: Control Arduino with Python using Firmata / PyFirmata


As you can see Arduino and Python can work very well together. This is great news for those of us who want to use the Arduino platform but don’t want to be bogged down by the C programming language. So, if you’re considering using Python with Arduino, go for it! It’s a great way to get started with both hardware and software development. You can either use Pyfirmata to communicate with your Arduino or go with a more direct approach and use the PySerial library. Thanks for reading! We hope this article has helped answer your question and given you some useful information. So, what are you waiting for? Give it a try and let us know how it goes!