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Old 02-24-2015, 02:55 PM   #1
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Cheap aquarium controller

I am working on my new project - aquarium controller for my 126l freshwater aquarium. Aquarium has LED lighting: white, red and blue LEDs. All aquarium maitenance can be done manually but there are boring jobs, like every day dose liquid fertilizers, turn on/off the lights etc. Of course the devices which requires only on/off actions can be controlled by timers, but then i will need several of them... So i decided to automate my aquarium. I made a list of functions which can be automated:
  • LED lighting control. This means that controller must have the ability to turn on/off the lights when i want. And of course LED dimming from X% to X% - for example from 10% to 20%.
  • Aquarium equipment control: filter, CO2 valve, air pump turn on/off actions.
  • Aquarium water temperature control. For this purpose digital temperature sensor will measure the temperature. Aquarium hood will have the fan installed. Controller will read aquarium temperature and will control heater and fan when required.
  • Automatic dosing of liquid fertilizers with dosing pumps. There are many cheap pumps in Ebay, I have used them before. They are quite reliable but a little noisy.
Additional features: time can be read from real time clock chip. Controller has battery installed, so controller will not lose time and settings during the power-offs. There are alarms system can be set. User will know that fertilizers are running out or aquarium temperature is too high/low.
I made controller description in www.mysimpleautomation.com (this is my page). There are wo images which allows you to see complete project:

As you can see controller has two boards: main board and buttons board. The heart of controller is PIC18F series microcontroller (not Arduino like everybody does).
There are two ways to control controller: via button keypad and bluetooth (PC needed).
The controller is not finished yet but project's PCBs are made. Now I am working on software improvement. So my question is: do you have any suggestions/ or maybe other fuctions can be implemented, like PH measurement?

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Old 02-26-2015, 04:40 PM   #2
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wow, brilliant! Very interested to see this in action. i have have been looking to do this myself, just dont quite have the skill set......yet

Sent from King Neptune's Cell Phone, (Yes, its water proof, he's a baller)
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Old 03-01-2015, 03:34 PM   #3
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Thanks, i will post video about controller as soon as i will finish controller firmware and software works. The biggest part of a job is done, now catching bugs and improving code. And some testing works are left to do. I hope i will finish project's 1st version completely after one month. Now i am thinking about adding several functions in the second version, like ph testing, graphic LCD, but before this the first version must be completed.
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