As a Hackster reader, you’ve certainly come across the amazing abilities of stroboscopes in your Internet or real life travels. If you do need an introduction, GreatScott! explains in the video below how it can cause a rotating mass to appear still or move slowly due to the RPM and light frequency alignment. But how does one build a stroboscope, and besides scientific experiments and automotive tune-ups, what are they good for?
To answer the first question, the YouTuber notes that while a siren is good for scaring off intruders, accompanying it with a flashing blue strobe light can be even better, visually disorienting evildoers (and those who forgot to properly disarm the system). To make one, you’ll need a high-powered LED, as well as a signal generator, microcontroller, or simply a 555 timer. Naturally, GreatScott! felt that the 555 timer was the appropriate solution, and got to work cutting out squares of aluminum to absorb heat from his trial LEDs.
20W, 30W, and 100W lights were tried for his system, and while each is annoying (even on video), he chose the 100W unit for it’s amplified effect. While the light is functioning properly, he still has more to do on his garage security system, so it will be interesting to see what he eventually comes up with!