Here’s an interesting Bitcoin mining rig consisting of both a Raspberry Pi and an Altera DE0-Nano FPGA board. The guys over at Design Spark decided to give this Bitcoin mining thing a try, and their project page details their efforts. You’ll find the links below for those who would be interested to give it a go with the setup depicted in the project, or with a similar setup.
Here’s what’s in the rig:
- Altera DE0-Nano FPGA board
- Raspberry Pi
- DE0-Nano port of the Open-Source FPGA Bitcoin Miner – (by Kramble)
- Altera Quartus II software – (Verilog compiler – the free Web Edition version will work)
With a performance of only 0.2 million hashes per second (MH/s) a Raspberry Pi alone is a non-starter for Bitcoin mining. However, the low cost and low energy consumption computer makes the perfect platform for coordinating mining across more capable hardware.
In the mining rig described here an FPGA does all the hard work (SHA-256 hashing) and communicates over a serial link with a Raspberry Pi. The latter requesting new work from, and submitting proof of work done to, a Bitcoin mining pool.
Head on over to Design Spark to check out the full article, and find out more about their approach to mining Bitcoins for the first time!