31 October 2014

The Eyes - A Last Minute Halloween Effect

Introduction
Halloween is a rather new tradition in our part of the world, but my family is very enthusiastic about it. Tombstones are built, bones are scattered in our front garden and a fog machine is kept in the basement for just this one day of the year. This time I thought that I could contribute a little LED effect. My idea was to use a couple of red LEDs to create a red-glowing eye effect, like some evil little monsters lurking in the dark.

6 February 2014

The Morse Thermometer - Part 3

Putting it all together
In part 1 and part 2 of this posts I investigated and designed the components for a solar-powered Morse thermometer. In part 3 everything gets connected.

In order to get the most out of the collected sunlight it is important to use as little power as possible. A red LED is a good choice here, because it only has a forward voltage of 1.7 Volts. So it will consume only about half the power of a white LED with a forward voltage of about 3.3 Volts.

Perhaps you remember that I had found out that even when the LED is not lit, the boost circuit from the solar lamp draws about 7mA. So it was important to switch it off during the time the thermometer is in stand-by.

Let's have a look at the original lamp circuit again.

24 May 2013

How to Do ISP Programming – Part 4: Fuses and Troubleshooting


Setting Fuses
 
As mentioned before, fuses are used to set a couple of things that might need to be set before the actual software starts to run. As a beginner you should not tinker with most of those settings, because it is possible to lock yourself out of in-system programming.