Introduction: PSI Science Lamp

The PSI Science Lamp (old Telephone to God (TTG)) circuit provides several fertile areas of cutting edge research for readers to dabble in; from influencing the probability of decaying radioactive particles (quantum mechanics), aka mind's influence on nature and machines to precognition and telepathy.

The circuit can be used for testing PSI; precognition, telepathy and psychokinesis (PK). In a pinch, it can even be used as home radioactive bomb/fallout detector. And when not used in any of the above applications it's a truly random mood light with a very high coolness factor.

History of the PSI Lamp

When I designed this circuit I had thought it original to me. My company has turned this circuit into a small commercial product. A series of events cause me to look to see if a RNG had ever been connect to four different color lights to test for PSI and PK. Searching through the Internet I found that connecting a "Geiger counter" RNG, to a modulo four selector to four different color lights for the expressed purpose of testing PSI and PK had been done in the 1960's by Helmut Schmidt.

Journal of Applied Physics, Feb 1970 pg 462-468, ISSN: 0021-8979

Not only had my circuit been created before, but in almost the exact same manner.

Helmut Schmidt had made many RNG devices, this was only one of them.

PSI Science Lamp Disclaimer:

When used as a fortune telling device, ie, "PSI Science Lamp I make the following disclaimer. The PSI Science Lamp, is based upon the randomness of radioactivity, the user's interpretation of these random events is their own responsibility. The PSI Science Lamp is offered as an entertainment device ONLY! I do not accept any responsible for any results consequential or inconsequential from the use or misuse of this device.

Einstein is quoted as saying God does not play dice with the universe.To which Neils Bohr replied, Einstein, stop telling God what to do with his dice."

Our PSI Science Lamp relies on the randomness of radioactivity. The built in miniature Geiger counter detects background radiation. Background radiation consists of three sources: cosmic, terrestrial, and internal. Cosmic radiation comes from the sun and stars. Terrestrial radiation comes from low levels of uranium, thorium, and their decay products in the soil, air and water. Internal radiation comes from radioactive potassium-40, carbon-14, lead-210, and other isotopes found inside our bodies.

Connected to the built in Geiger counter is a PIC microcontroller that uses the random time interval between the detection of radioactive particles to trigger the selection of a random number between 1 and 4. The random numbers generated by our PSI circuit are truly random. The Random Number Generator (RNG) will produce approximately one to two random numbers every minute.

As stated, the PSI Science Lamp generates a random number one through four. Each number is assigned to a color LED that is displayed in our lamp unit attached to the phone. Number one is assigned the color (1 =) Red, two is assigned the color (2= ) Green, three is assigned the color (3 =) Blue and four is assigned the color (4 =) Yellow. Feel free to mix up and/or change the LED colors, as you desire.

Fortune Telling - To use this device as a fortune telling device, assign answer values to the LED colors; for instance red = No, green = Yes, Blue = maybe, and Yellow ask again later. Something like a color light magic 8 ball. Ask the universae a question and wait for the color light reply. Is this any better than a magic eight ball? That's for you to decide?

Other fun and useful applications:

PSI Testing

The PSI circuit can be used in the same manner as Helmut Schmidt's RNG device to test for precognition and psychokinesis.

Precognition Test - The PSI Science Lamp, displays one of four colored LED light in a truly random sequence. Here the experimenter tries to guess the next color that will be lite. By correctly guessing the next color to be displayed, statistically greater than chance (one in four) alone would account for then experimenters show precognition.

Psychokinesis (PK) - Influence of the Mind Over Machine: Helmut Schmidt PK experiments in the 1960's followed this procedure. The subject tries to make one color come out greater than what would be allowed by chance. If that color id outputted by the device statistically greater than chance would account for that the experimenter can show PK.

PEAR is an acronym for the Princeton Engineering Anomalies Research. This interpret group of people led by Robert G. Jahn studied the mind influencing the behavior of machines, and proved a statistically correlation.

Random Number Generator (RNG) - Our PSI circuit can generate truly random numbers. You may question the need for random numbers. True random numbers are useful for data encryption (cryptography), statistical mechanics, probability, gaming, neural networks and disorder systems, to name a few.

Mood Light: The randomly changing colors from the lamp are a soothing. You may consider the randomly changing colors as an example of the Universe talking even if no one is listening.

"Radioactivity Detector" The PSI circuit may be also be used as a nuclear bomb/fallout radioactivity detector. If the Led's start flashing at a greater rate of two changes per minute for any length of time, you may be experiencing higher than normal radioactivity in the area.

How Random Numbers are Generated:

The way the random number generator operates is simple to understand. However, its fundamental function is best described using a mechanical analogy. Imagine if you will a sequence of numbers painted on a revolving wheel. A pointer is fixed on the outside of the wheel pointing to the number at the top of the wheel. The wheel is set into motion, spinning very rapidly. Then at any given random moment the wheel is instantly stopped. The number under the pointer becomes our random number. Once read, the wheel is set back into motion.

The microcontroller program follows pretty close to the mechanically analog. The microcontroller spins the sequence of numbers; one thought four internally, in a for-next loop. The random point in time when the sequence of numbers is instantly stopped is generated by the detection of a radioactive particle by the tiny built-in geiger counter. The number is read, displayed via LEDs and sent out serially on the TTL port , if one wishes to perform other random number generator (RNG) experiments.

Please note: this video shows the PSI Science Lamp with radioactive element nearby to induce faster random number generation. When used under normal conditions, the PSI circuit will generally produce about 1 to 2 random numbers (color changes) a minute.

Step 1: Circuit

The PSI Lamp Circuit may be build on a prototyping breadboard. Or a PSI Lamp Circuit KIT may be purchased from Images SI Inc. This shows the construction of the kit pcb.



Component / Modifier Qty Reference IDs


(1) 0.0047µF 12V C1

(1) 0.01µF 1 2V C2

(3) 0.01µF 1KV C3 C4 C6

(2) 0.1µF C5 C9

(1) 1000µF 16V C10

(1) 10µF 16V C11

(2) 22pF C7 C8

(4) RGBLED D3 D4 D9 D10

(2) 1N4007 Diode D2 D5

(2) 1N5281B ZENER D6 D7

(1) 1N914 Diode D1

(1) 5.1V ZENER Diode D8


(1) DC Power Jack P1

(4) 2N3904 NPN Q2 Q3 Q4 Q5

(1) IRF830 Q1

(1) 10K ¼W R10

(12) 150 ¼W R3 R4 R5 R7 R8 R9 R15 R16 R17 R18 R19 R20

(1) 15K ¼W 1 R1

(1) 1K ¼W R13

(1) 3.3M ¼W R12

(1) 330K ¼W R11

(1) 4.3K ¼W R6

(3) 4.7K ¼W R14 R21 R22

(1) 5.6K ¼W R2

(3) Switch SPDT S1 S2 S3

(1) GM Tube T2

(1) Mini Step-Up Trans T1

(1) 4049 U1a-f

(1) 7805 U4

(1) Rectifier U3

(1) PIC16F84 U2

(1) 16MHz XTAL X1

Step1: Building the PSI Science Lamp Circuit.

There are a few unique components to the electrical circuit. The first component is a miniature Geiger counter tube. The second is a mini-step up transformer. In addition a pre-programed 16F84 microcontroller is also available for this project. These components may be purchased from Images Scientific Instruments,

The hex file for the microcontroller is available for those you can program the 16F84 themselves.

The circuit schematic is shown in the illustrations. The 4049 Hex Inverting Buffer is set up as a square wave generator. The power MOSFET IRF830 switches the current on and off to the primary windings of the mini step up transformer. The output of the transformer is fed to a voltage-doubler consisting of two high voltage diodes D2 and D3 and two high voltage capacitors C4 and C5.
The high voltage output from this stage is regulated to 400 volts by using two zener diodes in series (D10 and D11).
The 400 volts regulated output connects to the anode of the miniature GM tube through a 4.7 mega-ohm current limiting resistor.
The cathode of the GM tube is the side with a wire attached to the inside wall of the glass tube. A 470K-ohm resistor is soldered to this end GM tube. A 5.1V zener diode is placed across the 470K-ohm resistor to limit the pulse output to 5.1 V. The output pulse is fed to the base of the 2N3904 transistor to buffer the pulse. The pulse from the 2N3904 passes through two inverting gates to the interrupt pin on the 16F84 microcontroller.
The microcontroller generates a random number between 1 and 4 each time it receives a pulse from the Geiger counter. That number is used to light one of the four LED colors. In the even that the same random number repeats, for instances the random number generator produces 2 then 2 again. The LED light will momentarily blink off before the second number is displayed.

Step 2: Enclosure

After you've finished the circuit, you need to house the circuit in an enclosure. You can use any enclosure large enough to house the circuit. I would recommend an enclosure with a transparent or translucent side(s) so that the color of the LEDs will be visible.

Images sells a small cube style enclosure with white translucent sides.

Step 3: Finishing Up

We finish the project up by attaching power wires from a 9V DC wall transformer to our main circuit.

Upon power up the 16F84 microcontroller lights each LED color in sequence for about 1/2 second. Then all LEDs are turned off. When the first radioactive particle is detected one LED color will light depending upon which random number is generated. Radioactive particle detection on average occurs approximately one to two times a minute. One can increase the random number generation by placing a radioactive material close to the PSI Science circuit. The mini-geiger counter picks up the additional radioactivity and will begin generating hundreds of random numbers a minute.

A decal is available for the case.

Going Further:

There is a tremendous amount of information online relating to many PSI experiments one can carry out using a real Random Number Generator (RNG) used in the PSI Science Lamp circuit search terms: PEAR, Robert Jahn, Dean Radin, Global Consciousness Project.

This was my first Instructables, it was a bit rushed so please forgive any mistakes.

The serial port also requires a TTL Serial/USB cable to connect to a PC. I have written a few PC program for reading the random numbers from the circuit. The programs available are Random Walk, Tally, Ramblings, Color Screen. These programs are freely downloadable from Images SI Inc.

I will continue to develop this hardware and write supporting software.

I have just attached the Microcontroller source code for the Random Number Generation, for anyone who wishes to see it.

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