Welcome to this rather minimalistic webpage. It has one purpose:
I like electronics and sometimes in my spare time I finally complete an electronics project. When I have, I'd like to share it.
In a world where my spare time and spare energy are both infinite, this webpage will also be. And I'll be the best electronics design engineer the world has ever seen. Until then, I hope this page will be updated every now and then with bigger or smaller projects.
Just a small note before you read about a project. As this is a hobbyist webpage I prioritize actually publishing the projects rather than making the documentation perfect with complete production specifications :)
There may be errors and such, see the projects as inspiration!
When you find an error or an improvement, drop me an e-mail and I'll be happy to correct it!
The DIY Prime Wake Up Light
BackgroundThis is a definite rip-off from Philips Wake Up Light (which might very well be a rip-off from another companys design).
I really enjoy waking up in the summer when the sun is shining in through the windows. But the winter mornings when it is pitch black are less appealing. So the concept of the Wake Up Light seems perfect. You enter an alarm time and approximately half an hour before that time the clock will start to increase the brightness of the lamp. So when you wake up your body has already experienced "sunrise" and the room is filled with light.
Short description of the Prime Wake Up LightAs I have limited experience of working with mains voltages I bought a COTS power controller (PAC2 from United Automation). It simply uses a 0-5 VDC signal to control the voltage to the load (in this case the lamp). The power controller needs 9VAC for its integrated control circuitry. The 230VAC to 9VAC transformer powers both the power controller and the rest of the electronics.
The microcontroller used is an Atmel ATMEGA16 I had laying around.
I figured that it's evil to give the microcontroller nothing less challenging than running around in while-loops and displaying time (and waiting for the alarm time). So I let the microcontroller calculate prime numbers while it waits for something to happen. If you're troubled by insomnia you can always lay there and look at the clock and think "one-million-eight-hundred-seventy-nine-thousand-eight-hundred-forty-nine, is that really a prime?". Once you have verified that it truly was a prime the clock has most likely come up with a new one to verify.
The main functions are
- Adjustable time (!)
- Adjustable alarm time (!)
- Alarm on/off (!)
- Lamp on/off
- Change from hh:mm to mm:ss display by pressing a button
- Prime calculation.
The currently largest prime is displayed in groups of three digits at even intervals when displaying time.
What I would like to update the design with:
- A radio or another audio source that will be triggered when the alarm time is reached. The light alone is not always enough to wake me up.
- Optimize the code for faster prime calculation (of course I could increase the clock frequency to 8MHz instead of 1MHz but that's cheating).
- Build a nice lamp shade.
- Find a suitable LED lamp.
- Build the power controller myself with discrete components.
Ongoing project: The Leach Amp
Current statusThis is a very slow project for me. I started to build this amplifier to increase my experience of analog electronics.
The amplifier design is made by Marshall Leach who sadly now has passed away. The complete project description can still be found at http://users.ece.gatech.edu/mleach/lowtim/.
It is an amplifier which has recieved very good reviews.
I have most of the components but have lacked the time to finish the project. Most of the electronics are done and I have all parts for the power supply but finding a suitable case is left to do.
The design is explained in great detail on Leachs webpage with complete listings of all neccessary components. Even though I'm not sure I'll finish the project I would highly recommend it!