Wiring

To summarize the general framework for our approach, we:

  1. Acquired and put together a relay kit that would make it possible to link two 120-Volt fluorescent bulbs to an Arduino board that only supports 5 Volts. (It took lots of soldering prowess to put together!)
  2. Spliced an extension chord so that we’d only need one cable for both bulbs, and connected power and ground through each socket.
  3. Connected the relays to the Arduino board using the 5V power pin, ground pin, and digital pins for each of the bulbs.
  4. Connected 4 LEDs to the Arduino via a breadboard to create a visual affordance for how long each session lasts and progress in time. 

Here are a few articles that we used for reference:

Circuit schematic

Relay board

Soldering away!

Connecting the circuitry

 

Construction

Here are the steps we took to create its zenny look and feel:

  1. Planned, measured and cut the main pieces of out medium-density fiberboard (MDF) 
  2. Mitered the joints to bevel them together for a smooth fit
  3. Cut out the frame and the acryllic sheet with a laser printer
  4. Attached the pieces together with wood glue
  5. Secured the wiring to the bottom triangle, making sure that the bottoms of each relay did not make contact with anything conductive 
  6. Sanded the acrylic sheet for a soft, muted feel
  7. Traced a zenny vector image in Adobe Illustrator
  8. Cut out the image out of vinyl with a laser printer
  9. Applied the image to the acrylic sheet
  10. Fit the acrylic sheet inside the frame window