circuit

DSLR Lightning Trigger 3

DSC_0539

Finally Some Lightning … IT WORKS!

Tonight, I was finally able to deploy the prototype of my lightning trigger.  The storm wasn’t particularly photogenic, but it at least helped prove the concept.  Lightning was slim and no bolts were in the best area for my camera, but the camera did capture the image to the right.  Not very good I know, but if it will work for such a poor example of lightning, I think during a real storm it will perform splendidly.  My next steps are to research moving to a wired trigger (replacing an MC-DC2 ) instead of the IR LED, add a potentiometer to adjust the sensitivity in the field, and installing the circuit into a project box.

Lessons Learned / Observations

Perhaps this won’t be a problem during a storm with a lot of lightning, but one problem that I encountered was that the camera would exit the “Quick-response remote” release mode and return to my prior setting in the absence of regular input.  I guess this was due to the camera entering a suspended state.  I will have to see if I can modify this setting, if not I may attempt to keep the camera awake.

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Posted by Chad Dotson in Arduino, Hobbies, Photography, Programming, Software Engineering, 1 comment

DSLR Lightning Trigger 2

Lightning Drought

Back in September, I created a simple Arduino-based lightning trigger (original article).  I’ve been waiting since then for the chance to test the circuit in the field.  Yesterday provided the first real chance to test the circuit; unfortunately, I missed it.

Improving the Program

Even though I missed the event, I did decide to improve the program a little.  The major change, if it can be called major, addresses a weakness in the original program.  Originally, every event would attempt to trigger the shutter twice (once when the lightning occured and again when the brightness returned to normal).  To fix this I am removing the absolute value function from the brightness test.  Now, it will only trigger if the new brightness is brighter than the previous.

Resources:

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Posted by Chad Dotson in Arduino, Hobbies, Photography, Programming, Software Engineering, Technology, 5 comments
My First Raspberry Pi Project

My First Raspberry Pi Project

View of the whole setup

View of the whole setup

Almost every year, I try to select a fun project to do while off for Christmas. This year the project I selected was based on Raspberry Pi.  Specifically I decided to build a device that would, when motion is detected, find the range to the motion using an ultrasonic rangefinder, take a picture using the camera module, and finally email me the results.

After just a few hours of work, I had separate proofs of concept working for each sensor written in Python.  A short time after, I started combining all the proofs of concept into a consolidated script which I got working.  Right now I am perfecting the classes for interfacing with the range finder and the motion detector and I am currently using picamera 0.8 for interfacing with the camera module.  I’ve included a link to the git repository I’m using for source control below.

Equipment:

  • Raspberry Pi Model B
  • Raspberry Pi 5MP Camera Board Module
  • HC-SR501 Human Sensor Module Pyroelectric Infrared
  • SainSmart HC-SR04 Ranging Detector Mod Distance Sensor
  • 5 180 ohm resistors
  • Breadboard and miscellaneous connectors

Source Code: https://github.com/chaddotson/PiPy

 

Posted by Chad Dotson in Featured, Hobbies, Neat Stuff, Raspberry Pi, 0 comments