I’m creating an interactive electronic terrarium. When people touches the terrarium, the lights start to breath and a leaf appears in the sand.
Normally, people put plants or plastic plants in terrariums to create a small concentrated nature environment. I think the interesting point of a terrarium is the glass vase isolates the ordinary objects from the real world and frames the objects for people to take a close look. My idea is to include electronic components into a terrarium for people to appreciate the aesthetic aspects of technology. Also, I also want to express technology is alive in another way.
I used an Attiny as micro-controller, flexinol as heating element and thermochromic sand as output.
Things you need:
Attiny45, Arduino(to load the code to Attiny)
Resistors(100 ohm x 1, 100k ohm x 1, 1Mohm x 10)
Coin battery (holder), 9V battery
Sand, Thermochromic Ink, Regular paint
Flexinol, A piece of fabric, crimp beads
Vase, copper tape
Step 1: Dye the Sand
Mix thermochromic dye with regular paint. Add the mixture to the sand and let dry. The color of trermochromic dye will fade when heated.
Step 2: Sew the Flexinol
Draw a shape as your choice on a piece of fabric. Sew the flexinol onto the fabric. Seal the two end with crimp beads. Test the result use a 9v battery.
Step 3: Tape the Vase
Use copper tape to outline your desire touching point.
Step 4: Code
Use Arduino to load the code to the Attiny. Here is a tutorial about how to work with Attiny.
Step 5: Solder Everything
Step 6: Put Everything In
Arrange the parts as you like. Glue some parts on the vase if you want to. At last, add the sand in and leave a thin layer on the heating part.