LED’s are fun. They are easily seen, not to hard to hook up, and produce a nice glow that can be gazed at for hours. Kids love them, so when [Jens] daughter was born, he knew that he wanted to create a device that would alternate colors depending on the object’s movement.
He utilized a mpu6050 accelerometer to detect changes in position, and wired together an Arduino Nano, a 9V battery, and a 12 LED neopixel ring from adafruit. Design requirements were jotted down beforehand ensuring that any child playing with the Hypno-Jellyfish would not be injured in any way. For example, anything that fits in a child’s mouth, will go in that child’s mouth; meaning that any materials used must be non-toxic, big enough not to be swallowed, and drool proof/water proof. The kids will pull, and throw, and drop the toy as well, so everything has to be of sturdy quality too. Epilepsy is also a concern when dealing with LED’s. But, [Jens] project hit the mark, making something that is kid-friendly while at the same time enjoyable for anyone else who likes color-changing lights.
The steps involved started by stripping the wires and inserting them into strands of paracord. Next, the electronics were rigged in place; followed by the making of the jellyfish from Polymorph plastic which was heated up above 60° C, transforming it into a soft and translucent material that can be crafted by hand. The end results looks something like this photo.
Now, if you don’t have kids, you can always develop this project for painting light. An example of what is possible can be seen below as letters are spelled out with the Hypno-Jellyfish that floats gracefully through the air.
A demo video is embedded below: