I think the hardest part about this instructable is spelling the word, "phosphorescent".  Thankfully the word GITD works just as well.  GITD is an acronym that stands for Glow In The Dark, and if you're familiar with anything Glow-In-The-Dark, then you know what phosphorescence is all about.  Basically there are certain materials which can absorb light, and then re-emit light slowly. 

Typically the re-emitted light is not the same color as the absorbed light, and Step 6 has some pictures, and explanation, of how that works.  But it doesn't matter if you slept through Quantum Mechanics, or even if you never had to take that class in the first place.  For this 'ible, it is enough to know the color of the absorbed light is blue, provided by a blue LED, and the color of the re-emitted light from the GITD material is green.  Visually the effect is very pretty.  Especially if you like the colors blue and green.

Aside from the underlying physics, and using big words like "phosphorescent", the next hardest part is actually finding phosphorescent (aka GITD) material, in the form of a flat sheet big enough to doodle on.  The best thing I found was this:  glow-in-the-dark printer paper.  Yes, they actually make GITD printer paper.  However there's no monger who sells it near where I live, so I had to buy it from an online retailer.  There's more about sources for GITD paper in Step 4.

Another trick is fitting a blue LED into the tip of the body of what used to be a ballpoint pen.  As an added complication I want the LED to turn on only when it is pressed against the pad.  That way it "marks" in the same manner as a pen or pencil, which marks only when pressed against the paper. If the LED is always on, I get an effect that is more like spray-paint, and that isn't the effect I want.

Another feature I want is for this contraption to be powered from a single AA battery.  To facilitate this,  I hack apart a cheap single-cell LED flashlight, and pull out its little magic LED-driver module, and then insert said module into my circuit.  See Steps 8, 10 and 11, for more on the magic LED-driver module.

When I put all these elements together:  GITD sheet, plus clipboard, plus page protector,plus blue LED, plus hacked LED driver module, plus pressure actuated switch...  the result is the Phosphorescent Notepad

It's a toy that I can use to draw doodles in the dark.  And it's great fun at parties! Particularly those parties that happen at night.

The last feature/flaw:  Drawings on the Phosphorescent Notepad erase themselves!

Given a few minutes the GITD material fades back into equilibrium with the ambient light/darkness.  The drawings don't last, unless I take a picture of them, and that is somewhat tricky because it must be done in low light.  A picture of a few "saved" doodles are attached to this Intro, and Step 13 which explains the trick to taking these pictures.   (Note:  If the camera flash goes off, the resulting flood of white light obliterates the drawing.  Thus, pictures of phosphorescent doodles must be taken with the camera's flash function turned off.)

Step 1: Prior Art

The Phosphorescent Notepad presented in this 'ible is not a new idea, and commercial versions of this toy do exist.  Many of them are lame and/or overpriced.  As usual, the benefit of doing things the SEDIFY way (Somebody Else Does It For You), is that way takes less effort. 

Some commercial versions of this product include, the Crayola(r) Glow Station(r), and the Uncle Milton(r) Shadow Magic(r). Some promotional pictures of these culled from the web are attached to this Step.  Coincidentally the words "Shadow Magic" are the title of not just one, but two, completely different, trashy romance novels.  It's just funny the things that turn up in the search results sometimes.

Also worth mentioning:   If there exists, near where you live, an institution calling itself a,  "Science Museum", you might have an opportunity to experience a room-sized version of the Phosphorescent Notepad.  Science Museums love to paint at least one room with phosphorescent paint.  For example, the Exploratorium has such an exhibit.
Link: http://exs.exploratorium.edu/exhibits/shadow-box-lightroom-painting/
That's the Exploratorium of San Francisco, in the Former United States.

Anyway, I just wanted you to be aware of some of what's out there,and that's the last I'll mention of SEDIFY  in this instructable.  So if you think you'd enjoy a little DIY, then please proceed to the next Step.

Images for this Step are just promo images, found on the web.

If it were TRUE UV you would not be able to see it. It is more likely VH Violet (aka Black-light). Actual Ultraviolet is energetic enough to break carbon bonds, thus sunburn. Black-light is energetic enough to stimulate secondary emissions, but not energetic enough to cause wide-scale damage. That and 15 mWatts of power isn't going to cause anywhere near a dangerous level of damage to you eyes. You eyes receive orders of magnitudes more damage just by stepping out side, from reflected UV in sunlight. On average over 1400 watts/meter of sunlight bounce off the ground, and your eyes can handle the damage from that, so I think you're safe.
IF you check NurdRage on YouTube, she shows how you can make the paper yourself. (Ok, not the paper, but the dye used to make the paper)
I thought of this and painted a small plywood board with glow in the dark paint, and I have a blue laser. I was going to make an ible, but you beat me too it! :-) Anyways, a blue laser is concentrated UV (blacklight) light, so it does glow very bright. I put a tiny foam circle on the end of my laser so I can directly touch it to the fairly delicate board when drawing. It's fun! Also, I haven't tried it yet, but you can take a shadow picture of yourself with a camera flash. Seriously, get a $6.00 blue laser off ebay, they're cool!
Very creative and original idea. This project required a decent amount of technical knowledge and re-engineering.<br><br>Hope to see more
Very cool!<br><br>Did you know if you use a blue laser the phosphorus will glow 10X brighter, and you can draw from a distance?
I don't have a blue laser, but that would be something fun to try! Although, I think I've seen it done, not IRL, but in this 'ible:<br> <a href="https://www.instructables.com/id/DIY-glow-in-the-dark-frame/">https://www.instructables.com/id/DIY-glow-in-the-dark-frame/</a>

About This Instructable




Bio: I've built some weird stuff over the years, but most of that stuff has remained unseen by the world outside of me and a ... More »
More by Jack A Lopez:Piezo Pen Pulsed Power Source Phosphorescent Notepad Convert a bar of soap into fatty acids 
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