Pulsar: Smart, Wireless, Wearable LED Pixels

Design and control colorful pixels wirelessly to create amazing accent lights, wearables, and more!

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The original Pulsar has been redesigned, for more details visit:
The Pulsar is a wearable electronic device that allows you to wirelessly control bright, colorful LEDs from any computer or mobile! It includes a rechargeable, long-lasting, pocket-sized battery, a tiny microcontroller with Bluetooth LE, a real-time clock, and 24 smart, multi-colored (RGB) LEDs.

To be honest, we didn't design the Pulsar with a specific use in mind. We simply wanted a way to include multi-colored lights in our projects without too much hassle, and be able to control them wirelessly.

To give you a taste for what we've built so far, here are a few examples:

Iron Man Costume

From Comic-Con to Maker Faire, the Pulsar allows us to build costumes of varying degrees of complexity. An Iron Man t-shirt works great when you're in a pinch for a costume party!

The Pulsar also makes a great addition to our 3d-printed repulsor arm! Check out the CAD model files courtesy of our neighbors at @Deezmaker!

International Space Station (ISS) Monitor

In collaboration with the creator of ISS Above (@Liam Kennedy), we developed custom firmware so that the Pulsar would display a countdown until the next pass of the ISS using beautiful LED animations!

The data are loaded wirelessly onto the Pulsar from a Raspberry Pi equipped with a USB Bluetooth LED adapter!

3D-Printed Night Lamp

In collaboration with our awesome neighbors over at @Deezmaker 3D-Printers we developed a 3d-printed night lamp that can be programmed as a soundless alarm clock from any bluetooth-capable device!

We're excited to see what you'll create using this neat little device!

  • 1 × RFduino BLE Module (NRF51822)
  • 1 × 5V USB Rechargeable Battery
  • 24 × WS2812B RGB LED (NeoPixels)
  • 1 × DS1307 RTC Module
  • 1 × 32.768KHZ Crystal

View all 8 components

  • Soundless Alarm Clock

    ACROBOTIC Industries08/22/2015 at 22:51 0 comments

    We love being surrounded by awesome people here in Pasadena. A few days ago we stopped by @Deezmaker to brainstorm on a few projects using the Pulsar. Given the built-in RTC, we decided to go for an LED-based Clock using translucent 3d-printed filament.

    We figured it'd be a nice feature to have a "Soundless Alarm" feature, so we're developing a simple smartphone app that allows you to synchronize your alarms with this device!

  • Pulsar-Powered Iron Man!

    ACROBOTIC Industries08/10/2015 at 01:09 0 comments

    We also had a bit of fun recording segments of our video. In this bit, we had the Pulsar sewn to an undershirt so that it aligned with the Iron Man t-shirt. Not a bad idea for a quick-n-easy halloween costume!

  • Product Photography Setup

    ACROBOTIC Industries08/10/2015 at 01:06 0 comments

    Had a bit of fun on Sunday afternoon working on some product photography and videos that will be included in our documentation for the project.

    To give you a sample of what's involved, here's a view of our tabletop setup:

    And these are some of the results we get:

    Not too shabby :)

  • One board to rule them all!

    ACROBOTIC Industries08/08/2015 at 07:06 0 comments

    Our original plan for the Pulsar was a 2-part board, one carrying the LEDs and another carrying the RFduino and all other electronic components. This would allow us to have more control over the size of each (e.g., we could have a huge ring of LEDs controlled by the same tiny-sized controller board).

    Photo credit: MakerBro; prepared for ISS Above HD+ Kickstarter campaign.

    After a few use cases, and feedback from potential users we discovered that the one-size fits most approach wasn't out of the question. After considering assembly costs it as a clear choice for us that we wanted one board to rule them all...

  • Halloween Costume Debacle

    ACROBOTIC Industries08/07/2015 at 01:50 0 comments

    I was thinking of doing something related to Fury Road this year for halloween, but now that I've made progress in developing the Pulsar I'm tempted to go as IronMan!

    Photo credit: MakerBro

View all 5 project logs

  • 1
    Step 1

    Getting started with the Pulsar is straight forward. We developed it so that it works right out-of-the-box without any programming. Simply plug in the power, and start loading up Light Patterns from our mobile and desktop Apps!

  • 2
    Step 2

  • 3
    Step 3

View all 4 instructions

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Steve Michel wrote 04/22/2017 at 01:56 point

great...maybe APA107 LED source is better choice

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ACROBOTIC Industries wrote 02/26/2018 at 01:03 point

Thanks for the suggestion!

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Joseph Prosnitz wrote 08/16/2015 at 20:35 point

Reminds me of my hackaday  prize project last year.

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ACROBOTIC Industries wrote 02/26/2018 at 01:03 point


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