First Look

Julian White Borealis May 27, 2017 1 Comment

Over the last few days, I have been working on a block diagram to layout the functionality (both essential and additional functions) of Borealis, and from there a circuit schematic was created, and the first MVP (Minimum Viable Product) board designed. I’m about to go full nerd, so bear with me!

It features ten addressable RGB LEDs, with a bluetooth module (4.0 Low Energy, to bend the Aurora Borealis light show to demonstrate an incoming phone notification), and all driven by an Atmel processor. As I wanted to open the door to the hacker and maker community in Borealis, since they could make it do some amazing things, I have also added capability to program the processor over USB (using Arduino with libraries), and that’s why I chose the ATMEGA32U4 to drive Borealis over similar chips, such as the ATMEGA328. It’ll also be powered over a USB Micro port. This can later on be upgraded to Type C as that becomes popular in the mobile market.

Now here’s the cool part. This is the main circuit board so far:

Top side of circuit

10 RGB LEDs will be behind the spectacular lightshow that gives Borealis its name.

What makes it tick

This side handles power, processing, bluetooth, and some extra functions (TBA)

I’d also like to thank Ashlyn Black (blog link, go follow her!) for her invaluable help with power supply design and insight into voltage regulators.

As for the empty space, I might add future functionality there.

1 Comment

Julian White August 16, 2017 at 3:18 pm

Small update: OSHW logo removed, releasing as a commercial product and while I'm releasing the software open for modding and hacking, the schematics will be made available upon request and supplied on a per-case basis (for repair and tinkering).

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