Introduction: The Plant Box
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i am the plant box. I am currently in beta testing stage. I am stable but I need upgrades. I display and keep plants healthy...
what is a plant box? plant box is a controlled environment for indoor horticulture. with the help of a microcontroller and sensors, the plant box alerts the user about the plant's condition. it is connected to the cloud, so the user can control the plant box remotely from any browsing capable device.
why? Plants are the building blocks of planet earth yet most people know very little about them. Or maybe you may be scared of not succeeding. some may just not have the time to always make sure their plants are healthy. Plants clean the air. They also naturally absorb negative energy in the air, giving off positive. So for a healthier planet, the plant box is here to assure no plant fails.
how? plant box is an open source non-profit product. unlike mainstream electronics/products (needing constant yearly model changes), the capabilities of plant box is assured to be always at the highest possible level by the end users. the end user can either collect my parts him/herself and put together the plant box on their own or make a donation to the plant box team and get one shipped to them worldwide (either as DIY kit or finished product).
Plant Box is happy to be here on planet earth, let's build !
*make sure to check out the attached .pdf presentation for more info (not fully completed yet - please refer to the plant doctor for a more updated presentation)
Step 1: Frame
I can be made from many different materials. V1.0 is currently made out of a used cardboard box. My current dimensions are 28x30x52cm. My outside is cover is foam board. My planned upgrade is a laser cut frame preferably out of 6.2mm thick MDF board.
Plant box can be laser cut using;
plastic (*3D print)
I breathe from the front opening and refresh the air. The details about this system can be read here. The user can interact with the plant by opening the touch sensitive magnetic door. The user can also enter my electronics part by the touch sensitive magnetic upper latch. all of my access areas are finger scan secured (here is a design we can implement for this feature by nodcah - Fingerprint Scanning Garage Door Opener)
Even though I can weigh as little as 2kgs my hidden 360 degree wheels and hidden handles make moving me very easy.
Step 2: Heart
The user can easily open the top latch and access the electronics. All I need to operate is a single AC plug.
From here I can control the lights, the sensors, the watering system. End user can always interact with me remotely over wi-fi, manually overriding the system.
I am equipped with a solder free breadboard. almost no tools are required to work on me.
Step 3: Lights
I am currently equipped with
16x 1W high power LEDs (ask me specific questions please)
2x DC fans (only 1 visible)
To see detailed wiring of lights that I can be equipped with, please read here.
My planned upgrade is
1x 700ma LED driver
23x 1W high power LEDs
1x DC fans (non visible)
*details of this upgrade will soon be added here*
Step 4: Built in Plant Doctor
Green light means every condition is as needed for the current plant/strain automatically through our online database. the end user simply enters the plant type and age on the webpage
Yellow means plant is sleeping (no light) or fault in the lighting system, if the light is off during ON stage.
Red means the plant is too cold or hot depending on the season.
Blue means the plant is thirsty.
Once either of the sensors are triggered I can send an e-mail, sms or even voice call a phone number. The user can turn on the webcam and see live footage of the plant and read my sensor data on the cloud.
Just attach the sensor to the soil and I'm ready to collect data. your plant is secured by the plant doctor. Plant Doctor is a project based off "plant health monitor"
In my heart I am equipped with;
pro mini microcontroller + mini breadboard
NTC , LDR, soil probes
9V battery + battery clip + switch
2x 10K + 1x 10 + 4x 220 ohm resistors
my planned parts upgrade is a wireless module with SD card.
Step 5: Conclusion
plant box is made by "The Plant Doctor" an open source non-profit company. please comment or private message if you want to become a beta tester with us.
please ask me any questions that you may have in the comments section. all of my plans and parts are freely available only through instructables.
Plant Box - made on earth . 2014
*this post will be updated weekly. subscribe for immediate updates. the updates will also be posted in the comments section below.
[ things needed to be done; 9/3/2014
we need an online life box forum, with minimum 2 topics - design and technical capabilities. what do users want, what do users need. never lacking fun, simplicity and the artsy side of the whole project. - if anyone has time to start a simple forum and operate it, please do so. your help is kindly appreciated, remember that our goal is to make the life box eco-friendly and technically unbeatable at all times and in all fields. this is the purpose of our open source company. you may lack the technical knowledge but are more of an artist and a designer. please help in any way you can. and let's build the best life box together.!]
love & peace
Step 6: New Body Upgrade
i'm working on a body upgrade for the plant box (12/09/2014). i will upload the dimensions and the laser cut out when I get finished with it.
the glass will eventually be smart glass technology. it will stay cloudy (can't see through, only light glow) when locked and secured. finger scan will unlock the box and immediately become clear glass (see through) - view here
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