loading
Picture of 555 timer based light seeking robot
I have always been fascinated by robots especially one with the wheels because they are cheap, easy and fun to make and play around with. Recently I came across a circuit in one of the books. It was a light sensitive led circuit based on 555 timer ic. I modified the circuit just a little to make a cheap light seeking robot. Let's see how i did it.
 
Remove these adsRemove these ads by Signing Up

Step 1: Materials

Picture of Materials
To build the bot you will need the below mentioned components.
1. 2x 555 timer ics
2. 4x 10k resistors
3. 2x LDRs (Light Dependent Resistors)
4. A breadboard if necessary
5. Some wires
6. 2x motors (with wheels)
7. 2x 0.01n capacitor
8. 9v portable power supply

And you may also need a messy workbench.

Step 2: The Schemetics

Picture of The Schemetics
The schematic diagram of this robot is very simple to understand. As I had mentioned earlier I just modified a circuit from on of the books to create this one. Make sure that the motor you use DOES NOT draw a lot of current. 

Step 3: Chips On The Board!

Picture of Chips On The Board!
Insert the ICs as shown in the figure. There will be a small notch or dot on every 555 timer ic. Make sure that the dots on both the chips should face upwards if you are going to build the robot as per the breadboard layout given in this instructables. Connect pins 8 and 4 together. Then connect pins 6 and 2 together.

Step 4: Power Source Layout

Picture of Power Source Layout
Connect pin1 to the negative rail on the breadboard. Connect pin8 to the positive rail on the breadboard. Do the same with the second chip.

Step 5: Resistors!

Picture of Resistors!
Now the most important part. Connect a 10k(brown, black and orange)resistor between the pins 8 and 6. Connect one more 10k resistor between the pins 7 and 6. Do the same with the next chip.

Step 6: Capacitors

Picture of Capacitors
Now connect a 0.01uf capacitor between the pins 1 and 5 of both the chips.

Step 7: Sensors

Picture of Sensors
The sensors used in this robot are nothing but simple LDRs. LDR is a kind of resistor whose  resistance varies according to the intensity of the light falling on it. Connect the LDRs between pins 1 and 2 of both the chips. You can connect LDR either way as it does not have polarity.

Step 8: Conclusion

Picture of Conclusion
instructables 025.JPG
Now,  last but not the least. Connect your motor between pin3 of the chip and negative rail of your breaboard. Do the same with the second chip. Its all done! You have built a light seeking robot yourself! Connect a 9v battery and shine a torch over the LDRs. You will notice that the motors run! Place the motors in such a way that the LDR controlling it is in the opposite side. The LDR controlling the right motor must placed to the left

Step 9: Troubleshooting

Picture of Troubleshooting
If this project is your first electronics project then you may have some problems. Here are some tips to ensure that your robot works best.
1. Make sure that your connections are correct before applying power. (Use the schematic diagram because as this is my first instructables I was very excited and took the photos in a hurry and there might be some errors in the connection.)
2. Confirm whether your components are working properly before using them.
3. Use a low power consuming motor.

Enjoy!
1-40 of 52Next »
ZenilM3 days ago

i am a new starter at the robotics and i am really confused between which capacitor to buy because there are a lot of capacitors with different voltage values so plz can anyone send me a link of required the capacitors for this project on ebay.you can mail me the link on the below given id

zenilmehta@gmail.com

ynze2 months ago

Can you post a video of the robot in action? It would improve your I'ble and besides that, I' curious to see how it reacts to light... :-)

C.V.Hariharan (author)  ynze2 months ago
Sorry! I have already used the parts in this robot to build others. I will try my best.
george.wilson.9615 made it!6 months ago
this was a very fun and educational project but I did it..thanks!
temp_202521202.jpgtemp_750314011.jpgtemp_1058334461.jpg
C.V.Hariharan (author)  george.wilson.96156 months ago
I am happy to know that you have completed the project!

Hi, could u plz tell us how how did you get the values of the capacitors and why did you connect them in that why and plz show any calculations u did.

Thanks alot

There was not much math involved in this build as I used an existing circuit with some very little modifications. It was a light activated led circuit where in place of led I attached the motors. The motors that I used needed very little power. If not then I would have added a transistor.

thanks for your reply .

may i know why did you use 2 10k resistor. and is your 555 timer acting in an astable mode?

Yes the chips are in astable mode to provide pwm for the motors.
Sir i am using a 12V dc motor at 300 rpm. Problem is that there is not enough torque to push the robot. Can i use a transistor(til31c) to amplify the voltage
C.V.Hariharan (author)  hydrake.logistix6 months ago
Try using a lower power consuming motor. If you want to use a high power motor, check the datasheet of the transistor that you want before using it or simply use a motor driver.
sabbir.emon8 months ago

SIR, thanks a lot. Will you please give me a working PCB layout for me ?? I have done it for my midterm project, and For final term, it is required to implement the robot with pcb. thanks :)

C.V.Hariharan (author)  sabbir.emon8 months ago
I never designed a PCB for this robot. It will take some time. I will try my best and contact you soon.

Sir, have you done it? my project submission date is almost getting over :(

C.V.Hariharan (author)  sabbir.emon8 months ago
When is the submission day? I am out of access to computers right now. Why don't you read some online sources and try till I can start designing?
kkhanna21 year ago

how to connect the battery.....pls tell asap

C.V.Hariharan (author)  kkhanna21 year ago

sorry ,can you explain it further?

thanks but problem solved but giving rise to new problem that the motors are making a very low noise.....but wheels not moving can this be an issue of battery cuz battery is 5v

C.V.Hariharan (author)  kkhanna21 year ago

how many volts does the motor need? be sure to check the value of components as well.

I have used the same values of component that you mentioned....

between 9-12 v.....and.....I tried a new battery too...but still motor sounds when I flash light but it doesn't move.....pls help

this is the motor am using but with gear

temp_-1774671833.jpg
C.V.Hariharan (author)  kkhanna21 year ago

try attaching a 100 nano farads capacitor between the poles of the motor and I think 9 volts battery will be good for the motors

am using 0.01 micro farad .....should I switch to 0.1 micro farad

C.V.Hariharan (author)  kkhanna21 year ago

when you here that noise try twisting the motor manually no need of changing the capacitor.

I did try to twist the wheels...but still the wheels move by manual external force only and that too a little bit...

C.V.Hariharan (author)  kkhanna21 year ago

can you upload a photo of the circuit that you have made so that I can analyse it?

see..this...if need any more info am ready to give...but pls solve....it...thanks

temp_-1774671833.jpgtemp_-1249299752.jpg
C.V.Hariharan (author)  kkhanna21 year ago

First we need to figure out whether it's the problem of the motor or the circuit. Try repaying the motor with an led each. Attach a 150 ohms resistor to the led. If the circuit is fine the led should respond to light. Then try changing the motor.

ohk I will implement this......but I did one more thing ....that I used multimeter to measure voltage at motor while flashing light it only showed 0.12 v.....and I don't think that will help it run.....anyway....going ahead with your suggestion......and...implementing it.....will sent the result......thank you

C.V.Hariharan (author)  kkhanna21 year ago

From the photos you have uploaded, I think the resistors might have been not wired correctly. I might be wrong as photos don't focus just on the resistors. Try checking them and make sure all the components work. Connect one pole of the motor to pin 3 and other to the ground.

Hey can you please recommend me a DC motor which doesn't draw a lot of current or the motor you used or any link.......cuz I when I replaced motor with led circuit worked fine....... Thanks in advance
C.V.Hariharan (author)  kkhanna21 year ago

Check these. These are the motors that I use.

and capacitor you used is 0.01 uF or 0.01nF......will the robot work with either of these capacitors........thanks in advance
Hey can you please recommend me a DC motor which doesn't draw a lot of current or the motor you used or any link.......cuz I when I replaced motor with led circuit worked fine....... Thanks in advance
Hey can you please recommend me a DC motor which doesn't draw a lot of current or the motor you used or any link.......cuz I when I replaced motor with led circuit worked fine....... Thanks in advance
Hey can you please recommend me a DC motor which doesn't draw a lot of current or the motor you used or any link.......cuz I when I replaced motor with led circuit worked fine....... Thanks in advance
Hey can you please recommend me a DC motor which doesn't draw a lot of current or the motor you used or any link.......cuz I when I replaced motor with led circuit worked fine....... Thanks in advance
ajoshi221 year ago
hey my second ic heat up but i sused crct correctly......
C.V.Hariharan (author)  ajoshi221 year ago
Can you just tell me the precise name of the chip? Along with all the other things written on the chip.
1-40 of 52Next »