Archive for category peter
Long time since an update, so I might as well talk about two recent laser upgrades. First I converted an unused exit sign box into a big hey-don’t-forget-laser-station-is-on indicator light. A couple of times we (/I) have forgotten to turn it off and have left the computer + pump + vent fan running. Not horrible, except that the pump runs quite warm and that ain’t good. Plus, I’d been thinking of ways of making turning on the laser more awesome, so this was a good opportunity. Read on after the break!
So from time to time bad things can happen with the laser, usually in the form of things burning and/or breaking. These past couple of weeks I’ve been building a box to monitor various status conditions of the laser. Initially this will be coolant flow rate and temperature, but could eventually include an air flow sensor, tube temperature, power consumption, etc. Basically this box will be an independent system for checking the overall health of the laser system, and signal to the user when things look wonky. Possible actions include audible alarm, triggering an estop, or praying to a preprogrammed god of your choice.
Anyhow, here are some progress photos:
The box is laser cut hardboard (designed in Inkscape). The charring gives a smart border. Inside is an Arduino, Nokia 3310 LCD screen and some connectors for interfacing with sensors. The temperature sensor is a simple thermistor, and the flow sensor is a FS-4400H. I’ll be posting source code, schematics and designs when I’m closer to finishing.