Python & CircuitPython

It's easy to use the LSM9DS0 sensor with Python or CircuitPython, and the Adafruit CircuitPython LSM9DS0 module.  This module allows you to easily write Python code that reads the accelerometer, magnetometer, and gyroscope from the sensor.

You can use this sensor with any CircuitPython microcontroller board or with a computer that has GPIO and Python thanks to Adafruit_Blinka, our CircuitPython-for-Python compatibility library.

CircuitPython Microcontroller Wiring

First wire up a LSM9DS0 to your board exactly as shown on the previous pages for Arduino. You can use either I2C or SPI wiring, although it's recommended to use I2C for simplicity. Here's an example of wiring a Feather M0 to the sensor with an I2C connection:

  • Board 3V to sensor VIN
  • Board GND to sensor GND
  • Board SCL to sensor SCL
  • Board SDA to sensor SDA

And an example of a Feather M0 wired with hardware SPI:

  • Board 3V to sensor VIN
  • Board GND to sensor GND
  • Board SCK to sensor SCL
  • Board MOSI to sensor SDA
  • Board MISO to sensor SDOG AND sensor SDOXM
  • Board D5 to sensor CSG
  • Board D6 to sensor CSXM

Python Computer Wiring

Since there's dozens of Linux computers/boards you can use we will show wiring for Raspberry Pi. For other platforms, please visit the guide for CircuitPython on Linux to see whether your platform is supported

Here's the Raspberry Pi wired with I2C:

  • Pi 3V3 to sensor VIN
  • Pi GND to sensor GND
  • Pi SCL to sensor SCL
  • Pi SDA to sensor SDA

Here's the Raspberry Pi wired with SPI:

  • Pi 3V3 to sensor VIN
  • Pi GND to sensor GND
  • Pi SCLK to sensor SCL
  • Pi MOSI to sensor SDA
  • Pi MISO to sensor SDOG AND sensor SDOXM
  • Pi GPIO5 to sensor CSG
  • Pi GPIO6 to sensor CSXM

CircuitPython Installation of LSM9DS0 Library

You'll need to install the Adafruit CircuitPython LSM9DS0 library on your CircuitPython board.  

First make sure you are running the latest version of Adafruit CircuitPython for your board.

Next you'll need to install the necessary libraries to use the hardware--carefully follow the steps to find and install these libraries from Adafruit's CircuitPython library bundle.  Our introduction guide has a great page on how to install the library bundle for both express and non-express boards.

Remember for non-express boards like the, you'll need to manually install the necessary libraries from the bundle:

  • adafruit_lsm9ds0.mpy
  • adafruit_bus_device

Before continuing make sure your board's lib folder or root filesystem has the adafruit_lsm9ds0.mpy, and adafruit_bus_device files and folders copied over.

Next connect to the board's serial REPL so you are at the CircuitPython >>> prompt.

Python Installation of LSM9DS0 Library

You'll need to install the Adafruit_Blinka library that provides the CircuitPython support in Python. This may also require enabling I2C on your platform and verifying you are running Python 3. Since each platform is a little different, and Linux changes often, please visit the CircuitPython on Linux guide to get your computer ready!

Once that's done, from your command line run the following command:

  • sudo pip3 install adafruit-circuitpython-lsm9ds0

If your default Python is version 3 you may need to run 'pip' instead. Just make sure you aren't trying to use CircuitPython on Python 2.x, it isn't supported!

CircuitPython & Python Usage

To demonstrate the usage of the sensor we'll initialize it and read the accelerometer, magnetometer, and more from the board's Python REPL.

Run the following code to import the necessary modules and initialize the I2C connection with the sensor:

Download: file
import board
import busio
import adafruit_lsm9ds0
i2c = busio.I2C(board.SCL, board.SDA)
sensor = adafruit_lsm9ds0.LSM9DS0_I2C(i2c)

If you're connected using SPI, run the following code to initialise the SPI connection with the sensor:

Download: file
import board
import busio
from digitalio import DigitalInOut, Direction
spi = busio.SPI(board.SCK, board.MOSI, board.MISO)
gcs = DigitalInOut(board.D5)
xmcs = DigitalInOut(board.D6)
sensor = adafruit_lsm9ds0.LSM9DS0_SPI(spi, xmcs, gcs)

Now you're ready to read values from the sensor using any of these properties:

  • acceleromter - A 3-tuple of X, Y, Z axis accelerometer values in meters/second squared.
  • magnetometer - A 3-tuple of X, Y, Z axis magnetometer values in gauss.
  • gyroscope - A 3-tuple of X, Y, Z axis gyroscope values in degrees/second.
  • temperature - The sensor temperature in degrees Celsius.
Download: file
print('Acceleration (m/s^2): ({0:0.3f},{1:0.3f},{2:0.3f})'.format(*sensor.accelerometer))
print('Magnetometer (gauss): ({0:0.3f},{1:0.3f},{2:0.3f})'.format(*sensor.magnetometer))
print('Gyroscope (degrees/sec): ({0:0.3f},{1:0.3f},{2:0.3f})'.format(*sensor.gyroscope))
print('Temperature: {0:0.3f}C'.format(sensor.temperature))

In addition you can adjust some properties by getting and setting their values:

  • accel_range - The range of the accelerometer, should be a value of ACCELRANGE_2G, ACCELRANGE_4G, ACCELRANGE_6G, ACCELRANGE_8G, or ACCELRANGE_16G from the adafruit_lsm9ds0 module.  The default is 2G.
  • mag_gain - The gain of the magnetometer, should be a value of MAGGAIN_2GAUSS, MAGGAIN_4GAUSS, MAGGAIN_8GAUSS, or MAGGAIN_12GAUSS from the adafruit_lsm9ds0 module.  The default is 2 gauss.
  • gyro_scale - The scale of the gyroscope, should be a value of GYROSCALE_245DPS, GYROSCALE_500DPS, or GYROSCALE_2000DPS from the adafruit_lsm9ds0 module.  The default is 245 DPS.
Download: file
sensor.accel_range = adafruit_lsm9ds0.ACCELRANGE_4G
sensor.mag_gain = adafruit_lsm9ds0.MAGGAIN_8GAUSS
sensor.gyro_scale = adafruit_lsm9ds0.GYROSCALE_500DPS

See the simpletest.py example for a complete demo of printing the accelerometer, magnetometer, gyroscope every second.  Save this as main.py on the board and examine the REPL output to see the range printed every second.

That's all there is to using the LSM9DS0 with CircuitPython!

Full Example Code

# Simple demo of the LSM9DS0 accelerometer, magnetometer, gyroscope.
# Will print the acceleration, magnetometer, and gyroscope values every second.
import time

import board
import busio
# import digitalio # Used with SPI

import adafruit_lsm9ds0

# I2C connection:
i2c = busio.I2C(board.SCL, board.SDA)
sensor = adafruit_lsm9ds0.LSM9DS0_I2C(i2c)

#SPI connection:
# from digitalio import DigitalInOut, Direction
# spi = busio.SPI(board.SCK, board.MOSI, board.MISO)
# gcs = DigitalInOut(board.D5)
# xmcs = DigitalInOut(board.D6)
# sensor = adafruit_lsm9ds0.LSM9DS0_SPI(spi, xmcs, gcs)

# Main loop will read the acceleration, magnetometer, gyroscope, Temperature
# values every second and print them out.
while True:
    # Read acceleration, magnetometer, gyroscope, temperature.
    accel_x, accel_y, accel_z = sensor.acceleration
    mag_x, mag_y, mag_z = sensor.magnetic
    gyro_x, gyro_y, gyro_z = sensor.gyro
    temp = sensor.temperature
    # Print values.
    print('Acceleration (m/s^2): ({0:0.3f},{1:0.3f},{2:0.3f})'.format(accel_x, accel_y, accel_z))
    print('Magnetometer (gauss): ({0:0.3f},{1:0.3f},{2:0.3f})'.format(mag_x, mag_y, mag_z))
    print('Gyroscope (degrees/sec): ({0:0.3f},{1:0.3f},{2:0.3f})'.format(gyro_x, gyro_y, gyro_z))
    print('Temperature: {0:0.3f}C'.format(temp))
    # Delay for a second.
    time.sleep(1.0)
This guide was first published on Aug 04, 2014. It was last updated on Aug 04, 2014. This page (Python & CircuitPython) was last updated on Sep 18, 2019.