This walk-through will show you how to build a sensor to monitor your plant's environment and use Stats in Sound's ERC-20 app to turn this data into music, allowing you to listen to your plant's reaction to it's environment. For more information on this project, please visit www.statsinsound.org.uk. Below is a sample recording of the music generated by the ERC-20, monitoring sensor attched to a happy healthy chilli plant.
You will need some basic experience with soldering, breadboarding and using the Arduino platform for this tutorial.
This particular instructable is for a sensor that will upload it's data via a WIFI connection. If you house it correctly, you can keep it outside. If this seems a bit adventurous for you, check out the ethernet version here.
To build a plant sensor, you will need the following:
] 1 x Arduino Uno
] 1 x WIfly shield + headers
] 1 x USB A>B cable
] 1 x 5v Relay
] 1 x ZTX605 -type transisitor
] 1 x DHT22 Temperature + Humidity sensor
] 1 x LDR (Light dependent resistor)
] 4 x 10Kohm resistors
] 2 x Nails (Any nails will do for now)
] Plenty of hook up wire (single core wire)
] A Soldering iron & plenty of solder
] A Mac or windows computer
Once you think you have everything, you can continue to the next step to get started!
Step 1: Prepare the WIFLY Shield
The WIFLY shield is a WIFI card that you can use to let your arduino talk to the internet with relative ease. It comes without any headers on it so the first thing you'll want to do it solder those on, as in the picture below.
We will need to enable the Arduino to turn the WIFLY on and off so that it can be reset via the software. This prevents having to manually rest the device if there are any problems. In order to do this, we need to bend out or cut off the ' Vin' pin of the shield so that it is not attached to the Arduino. Instead we will use a relay / transistor circuit to use a digital pin on the arduino to turn it on and off.
The next few steps will describe the major components before we look at the circuit diagram.