Computer-Controlled Light-Up Water Fountain using pic-microcontroller

System Overview

La Fontaine Du Campus Est (The Fountain of East Campus) is a computer-controlled, servo-actuated, LED and halogen-lit, sump-pump powered water fountain. It features five streams of water that can each be individually controlled (on/off) as well as pivoted (90 degrees of freedom). Each stream of water is lit by a halogen light. The perimeter of the fountain has RGB triplets that can perform various animations. The fountain and water are also illuminated by eight Luxeon LEDs. The entire system is controlled by a PC that sequences through a choreographed file called a ShowFile. Three circuit boards act as an interface between the fountain and the computer: a valve control board, an LED control board, and a servo control board. All but the last were custom built for La Fontaine Du Campus Est.

Computer-Controlled Light-Up Water Fountain

The above diagram shows the connections between the three circuit boards that run the fountain devices, the Fountain Director PC, and the fountain hardware itself.

The underside of the fountain. Blue objects with attached hoses are the washing machine solenoids used to switch each nozzle on and off.

Fountain-side electronics are mounted in a sealed box under the fountain surface.

Valve/Halogen Controller

The valves to turn the nozzles on or off are activated by relays. The halogen lamps that point up the water streams are also activated by relays. The valve/halogen controller board is a custom circuit that interfaces via USB and activates these inductive loads on demand. There is also built-in logic that ensures a relief valve is always in the proper state of operation. The circuit is based around a PIC 18-series microcontroller and an FTDI USB-UART converter.

READ  Microchip PIC Microcontrollers

Downloadable valve/halogen controller source code:

Valve/Halogen Controller Source

Computer-Controlled Light-Up Water Fountain

LED Controller

The LED controller is designed to serve as a general purpose lighting controller. It controls the 24 fountain-mounted LEDs as well as the eight Luxeons. All lighting animations are built into the onboard memory. A computer interfaces with the board and tells it which animation to play, and with what color(s).


For more detail: Computer-Controlled Light-Up Water Fountain

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  • Microcontroller program for Digital water fountain

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