Sensory Blinds

Autonomous Blinds is an experiment that I created to help me understand and explore the use of the electronic and programming world.  The project serves as a demonstrative exercise of what I’d like to do in future projects regarding the use of sensors to control an adaptive environment.

The Autonomous Blinds project employs an Arduino Uno micro-processor and electronic control circuitry, a step-servo motor, a photo resistor and a temperature sensor.  The blinds are designed to self-configured based on the intensity of incoming light and can also respond to changes in ambient temperature (or temperature of the glass).   By regulating the amount of light allowed into the interior of a home the associated heat can be controlled in an environmentally and eco-friendly manner.  The programming code is written in C++ using a formula designed to monitor the environment and respond  in a predictable and consistent fashion.

After a couple days of coding the project was up and running.  View test video HERE:  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IzzZ7vl0SVU

In this video, the blinds run through a test mode, fully opening and closing to establish servo drive limits.  Once the test is complete the program calculates servo positional data based on the temperature and light in a given space and then transmits a corresponding voltage to the servo motor to open or close the blinds.

After venturing into the coding world, I decided to recreate the project in a more familiar environment.  Using the Arduino Uno, Rhinoceros, Grasshopper, and Firefly I was able to devise a similar set of rules to control the blinds.

It is currently a work in progress, so the script written is a small portion of a potential larger project.  If you wish to discuss this project further, feel free to contact me at dbutera@siu.edu.  I am currently unsure if the project will be developed any further, as I initially set out to bridge the knowledge gap between my major, architecture, and the electronic world.  If interested in taking this further, I’d be happy to assist.

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