Instructables
Picture of Pressure Activated Light-Up Umbrella
claire.JPG
IMG_2934.jpg
***********************VIDEO: ******************************

Once upon a time, 2 girls greatly enjoyed walking in the rain with umbrellas. 
They decided the enjoyment of this experience could be maximized by building their own pressure-activated web of LEDs to install under their umbrella. 
Thus, with the help of an Arduino, some 4051 multiplexers, a lot of wire and a lot of solder, they set off on their path to success. 

Step 1: Materials List

Just based on size, we decided to use 24 LEDs to light our umbrella, with 8 strands of 3 LEDs each emanating out from the central hub. 

We used the following materials:

1 umbrella
1 Arduino Uno R3 microcontroller
1 9 V Battery
24 yellow LEDs (we advise that you use one with diffused light and a wide viewing angle, otherwise the size and color is up to you)
8 piezo sensor disks (we specifically ordered these from sparkfun: http://www.sparkfun.com/products/10293, though they are a bit fragile. You might want to look for something different.)
2 4051 multiplexers/demultiplexers
8 1 MΩ resistors (to be in parallel with the piezo sensors)
8 10 Ω resistors (to be in series with the LED strings)
LOTS of wire
LOTS of solder 
Hot glue/hot glue gun
Electrical tape
Duct tape


 
Remove these adsRemove these ads by Signing Up
alexmac1318 months ago
flora and their rgb flora would work well, random positions and colours with reduced wires
nechaus10 months ago
What a clever idea, I am thinking now i might make something similar.
Since it is such a low current application, you could get away with the smallest wiring, like tiny ribbon cable, it could be fed down the main pole of the umbrella, a small plastic 3d printed box could be used to waterproof the main electronics and act as a handle.

just cool idea, well done
alexmac1311 year ago
Now think of this in reverse, the sensors on a car wind shield and you get the bug hit count when driving in the country. :) I have been looking for a means to record the data - now I know :)
what if I want to put more LEDS per strand ?
xmacex1 year ago
Beautiful idea, this is what Arduino was made for!
LadyTron1 year ago
This is so cool!!! Where does someone go to learn how to do all this stuff? Engineering school?
snl017 (author)  LadyTron1 year ago
Not quite. We attend Pomona College. It's a liberal arts school in Southern California, and students are lucky enough to have classes and resources like this!
I am a student (15 years old) and I'm making one of these for my computing project! :D How would I go about printing a circuit board?
snl017 (author)  dionneobrien1 year ago
Hi there!

It's actually a pretty complicated process, and we are lucky enough to have the facilities to do that on campus. You might want to contact any local universities or engineering companies? Or google it? Sorry I can't be more help! Good luck!
Justdoofus2 years ago
Good Instructable! Really good idea!

A question though for anyone: Can I buy an identical chip to fit into the slot in the arduino mini and just program it, then remove it, and then plug it into a pcb or breadboard so that I can program many chips and still keep the arduino? For programming..
mimicotton2 years ago
good idea, will you please upload the image when the LED lights on?
rainbow-umbrella1.gif
yalin2 years ago
wow! nice one. would be better with conductive thread, smt leds and lilypad arduino.
FJMSoft2 years ago
Nice project, but I think you dont need an arduino for that.
Congratulations!
You are featured on Hack-a-Day!
http://hackaday.com/2012/05/20/rain-activated-light-show-in-an-umbrella/

Clipart-Congratulations.jpg
yadoo862 years ago
Great project. We really love it.

We also want to inform you that your instructable has been published on our arduino facebook page (http://www.facebook.com/faceuino). Feel free to join us and answer community questions.

Sincerely,
Faceuino team
Thats awesome! I could have used one of those today!
That is very awesome! Great idea and great job making it!
Kiteman2 years ago
Brilliant project!

(You do know you can embed the YouTube video into your Instructable, don't you? Just remember to use the "old code".)