Automated Lighting?

Hi there, I am renting a place for my new office for 3D animation and I wanted to make an automatic lighting system to turn on lights when I'm in a room and off when I move to another room. How easy/hard is it to do that? And what do I need to make my light switch on and off slowly? Cheers, Shawin.

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Goodhart10 years ago
Although this may be more complex then you need, if you are using incandescent lights, a ramp circuit would gradually turn them on, depending on how steep you set the ramp: Ramp circuit idea link
beatoven (author)  Goodhart10 years ago
Yes, I'm using incandescent lights... The ramp circuit idea seems great, but the example you gave me is quite confusing for me. I don't know much about complex circuits. It would be great to know what parts I need and a circuit diagram :(
Goodhart beatoven10 years ago
Yeah, that circuit I linked to was just for the idea. To eliminate :ringing, a triac should probably be employed also.
beatoven (author)  Goodhart10 years ago
Is it possible to use a simple circuit using capacitors and resistors to make the soft-on/off? Or is it much more complex for a/c?
Here's an example for a hard disk activity LED:
simple soft On circuit (link)
Goodhart beatoven10 years ago
Because of the way a cap works (charge/discharge, with dc), any capacitor can be used to help filter or smooth sine waves or eliminate a portion of them (to ground). AC passes through a capacitor much like it wasn't there. You many be able to use inductors, but that is getting a little outside my area of knowledge I am afraid.
beatoven (author)  Goodhart10 years ago
Hmm, I hate AC! I'll look up inductors then. Ramp circuits seem too complex for the mere mortal that be me. Aren't there commercial switches that do this? I'm pretty sure I saw a soft on switch in a hotel once.
Goodhart beatoven10 years ago
Here is one, but they don't ship outside th|UK or Irish Republic a: Auto fade dimmer... and they do not appear to "fade on" but am not sure.

And another link for information Understand, I do not know anything about these locations and their reputability.

Oh wait, here is a USA distributor: Link to Lutron Maestro auto dimmers

Some patent info if you are interested: Patented dimmer switch auto on/off

I hope this helps...
beatoven (author)  Goodhart10 years ago
Thanks a lot Goodhart. The one from the UK site is really expensive. I'll try to mail the US distributor and see if they ship to Mauritius. I have to find my college physics teacher and ask if he can help me with making that ramp circuit.
Lftndbt10 years ago
I'd suggest going to your local wal-mart/lighting store and picking up a sensor pwr point socket... run your lights through it .... Soft start on the lights maybe more of a problem... perhaps have a look at fluorescet globes.. I know some of the one's I sell take about a min to warm up to full power..
beatoven (author)  Lftndbt10 years ago
There's no wal-mart or lighting stores here in Mauritius. Only basic hardware stores with nails and wires and stuff. I found a pir sensor. Now I need something for the soft-on/off. Do your fluorescent globes take some time to turn off as well? Anyway I won't get them here though.
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