Archive for the ‘Development: Hardware’ Category

Kit sketches

The basic kit for beginners to learn about circuits has a databus with gaps and is connected to a power source. As the circuit is not closed the actuator patch (here an LED) won’t work.

Now the learners can close the gap and make the led light up by using various textile techniques (in the example sewing and glueing).

Or by adding switches to the circuit.

The circuit then can be attached to a piece of cloth or bag or anything else.

The more advanced learners will program a microcontroller that is connected to the bus in order to use more advanced sensor e.g. the stretch sensor.

The learner can either attach the sensor and actuators directly to the patch or put them somewhere else on a piece of close by e.g. using conductive yarn in between.

Schematics

Before I leave next week for a 3 weeks holiday I made some Eagle schematics board layouts that I will etch when I am back.

One is a little board for external power supplies e.g. for powering the thermochromic material.


Another one is a basic board layout in case we decide to use the ATmega8 directly with an ISP programmer instead of using the bootloader.

Attaching controllers to fabric

Still we have to attach controllers to fabric in a reliable and nice-looking connection. A very nice technique by Leah Buechley (http://www.cs.colorado.edu/~buechley/engineering/fabric_PCB.html) who irons laser-cut fabric pcbs on fabric exists. Unfortunately we do not have a laser cutter. As we will stick (for this time) to regular etched pcbs we only have to connect the output pins to fabric so we can use a very quick and dirty variation. I partly cut out stripes stick the pins through from the other side and glue them together. Now I can sew to the textile databus.