Another LED fixture but with a twist - The Planted Tank Forum
 
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post #1 of 7 (permalink) Old 03-31-2010, 02:18 AM Thread Starter
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Another LED fixture but with a twist

So this is an continuation of an earlier thread using an Arduino board (microprocessor) and a TLC5941 dimmable LED driver, and 5 RGB LEDS.
https://www.plantedtank.net/forums/di...component.html

After prototyping on the bread board, I soldered the pieces together.


underside (sloppy sodering )


Here it is attached to the arduino board


Now onto the LEDs (pre-trimming)


After trimming


And the metal box is the power supply (5 volts, 5amps) that will feed the LEDs. It was salvaged out of a computer, I believe.

Here's the underside of the LED platform


the leds are glued onto a piece of aluminum roofing thing I have laying around with heat resistant epoxy. It serves as a reflector and heat sink. The aluminum piece is glued on to a 1/4" plywood.


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post #2 of 7 (permalink) Old 03-31-2010, 02:23 AM Thread Starter
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I built the hood out of 1x4 aspen. Pretty cool wood to work with. It's light and easy to cut and carve.



And on the end, I chiseled wholes for a port for the power and USB/serial connection to the arduino. How many fixtures are made for usb input?



This 10G tank sits under a shelf where I will screw the fixture to.


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post #3 of 7 (permalink) Old 03-31-2010, 02:27 AM Thread Starter
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After testing the fixture out for a day, I ran into a problem. The tlc5941 fried!
So, I assumed at some point, it was drawing too much current from the power supply that was feeding the LEDs. So, a safe route was to add resistors (40 - 60 ohms) onto the board to protect the tlc5941 and added a new tlc5941.



So, I'm testing again. Feeling all the components to see if anything is too hot.
This is a picture of my 'night light'


A close up


I'm not sure I like the colors... Maybe it should be gray/blue instead. I'll have to change the coding. Will update further with pictures and coding. I'm still working out some bugs. The color transitions are too fast. It changes in a matter of seconds while I coded it to change over hours. So, not sure what's going on.


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post #4 of 7 (permalink) Old 03-31-2010, 05:02 AM
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awesome

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post #5 of 7 (permalink) Old 03-31-2010, 06:47 AM
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neat! A shortcut to this might be to look at hot tub LED lights, but these normally do like a rainbow effect though. My parents cal spa one has multiple setting, like picking a soild color, fast and slow changing, and fast and slow fading.
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post #6 of 7 (permalink) Old 03-31-2010, 06:57 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mistergreen View Post
the leds are glued onto a piece of aluminum roofing thing I have laying around with heat resistant epoxy. It serves as a reflector and heat sink.
Cool idea.

But why are you using heat resistant epoxy? You want to be using thermal paste to allow the heat from the back of the LED's to go into the aluminum. Especially since you aren't using an actual heat sink. It shoudl work just fine. but I would bet that instead of a 14 year LED life you might get something like 5-8 years.
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post #7 of 7 (permalink) Old 03-31-2010, 10:07 PM Thread Starter
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'Heat resistant', meaning it it won't fall apart. It's call welding epoxy, I had it laying around. I felt the aluminum and it does feel warm so it's doing its job.

Ok, more pictures...
Here are the different color stages.. The arduino is running a clock and will trigger these events.

I'm treating this tank like a stage and these are stage lights, making this dramatic and such.

Morning lights
it gets triggered at 08:30:00

sorry for the blurriness.

a close up

it's cool to see red shadows.

Day lights
on at 10:30:00

I don't think it's all that bright but it's a low tech tank. Also the power supply isn't supplying enough amps but it's safer this way.

Night lights
on at 18:32:00



I didn't wait around all day to take these pictures.
I wrote a program in Processing, a java lite type application. As you can see from the screen, I use this to sync my computer's time to the arduino. And I made switches (buttons on the screen) to turn on the lighting events so I don't have to wait around. When there's a power outage or if I unplug the arduino, the time is wiped out. All communication is through a usb connection.



Overall, I'm digging this RGB LED. The colors on the fish are enhanced. I have some chili boraras in the tank and they pop out like fire! or red hot chili peppers.


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