Laser Alarm

Posted on Feb 5, 2014

This circuit is a laser alarm system like the one we see in various movies. It uses a laser pointer beam to secure your valuables and property. Essentially, when the beam gets interrupted by a person, animal or object, the resistance of a photodiode will increase and an alarm will be activated. The laser and the receiver can be fitted in same box,

Laser Alarm
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sharing a common power supply. As the receiver draws less than 10 mA on average, you`ll soon find that the laser is the most current hungry device! Mirrors are used to direct the beam in whatever setup you require. Examples of a passage and an area protected by the alarm are shown in the diagram. In the circuit diagram we find a TL072 op-amp (IC1. A) configured as voltage comparator between the voltage reference provided by the adjustable voltage divider P1/R4 and the light-dependent voltage provided by the voltage divider consisting of photodiode D1 and fixed resistor R3. When the laser beam is interrupted, the voltage on comparator pin 2 drops below that at pin 3, causing the output to swing to (almost) the positive supply voltage and indicating an alarm condition. This signal can drive a siren, a computer or a light that hopefully will deter the intruder. Alternatively it can be used to silently` trigger a more sophisticated alarm. Resistor R2 provides some hysteresis to prevent oscillation when the two comparator input voltages are almost equal. Capacitor C1 makes the circuit immune to short, accidental interruptions of the beam, e. g. , by flying insects. If you want your circuit to have faster responses you can reduce its value to 1 µF. The operation of the circuit is illustrated by the waveform diagram, which also proves the hysteresis action that sets an upper and a lower threshold on the input voltage. You can...

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