Mini stroboscope

Posted on Feb 4, 2014

A strobe light passes a brief, intense pulse of electric current through a gas, which then emits a brilliant burst of light. The gas is usually one of two inert gases, xenon or krypton, that emit relatively white light when they`re struck by the fast moving electrons in the electric current. Because krypton and xenon atoms have a great many electr

Mini stroboscope
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ons and their electronic structures are very complicated, they emit light over a broad range of wavelengths. Thus the strobe emits a rich, white light during the moments while current is passing through the gas. Supplying the enormous current needed to maintain the brief arc in the strobe`s gas is done with the help of a capacitor. A high voltage power supply pumps charge to the cpacitor (usually to 200-600V range). You can often hear a whistling sound as this power supply does its work. The capacitor plates are connected to one another through the gas-filled flashlamp that will eventually produce the light. However, current can`t pass through the gas in the flashlamp until some electric charges are injected into the gas. These initial charges are usually produced by a high voltage pulse applied to a wire that wraps around the middle of the flashlamp or to the metal reflector near the flashlamp. A cascade of collisions quickly leads to a violent arc of charged particles flowing through the flashlamp and colliding with the gas atoms. The flashlamp emits its brilliant burst of light that terminates only when the capacitor`s separated electric charges and stored energy are exhausted. I build this mini strobosocope using compotents mostly taken from an old pocket camera flash unit and some cheap components I already had. On the picture below you can see the picture of the flash unit I used in my circuit (quite similar camera...

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