Count Down Timer Relay with 555

Posted on Sep 11, 2012

The 555 is configured in the standard astable oscillator circuit designed to give a square wave cycle at a period of around 1 cycle/sec. A potentiometer is included in the design so the period can be set to exactly 1 second by timing the LED flashesc. A jumper connection is provided so the LED can be turned off. As soon as power is applied to the circuit counting begins. We have not reviewed the operation of the 555 IC here. Most electronic magazines review it in detail once every few years. And it is a standard feature in most intoductory electronic text books.

Count Down Timer Relay with 555
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The output pulse from pin 3 of the 555 is fed to a the clock input pin 10 of the 14-stage binary ripple counter, the 4020 (or sometimes 14020.) You can see from the schematic that the LED input is taken directly from this connection. Ripple Counter: The counter output wanted is set by a jumper. Eleven counter outputs are available: 8 counts, 16 32 64 128 256 512 1024 4096 and 8192 counts. If the 555 is set to oscillate at exactly 1.0Hz by the on-board trimpot then the maximum timer interval which can be set is 8192 seconds (just over 2 hours.) At the end of the counting period a pulse is output on the pin with the jumper on it. The 14020 ripple counter advances its count on each negative transistion of the clock pulse from the 555. So for each output cycle of low-high-low-high the count is advanced by two. It can be set to an zero state (all outputs low) by a logic high applied to pin 11. In this circuit C3, R4 and D1 are arranged as a power-on reset. When power is applied to the circuit C3 is in a discharged state so pin 11 will be pulled high. C3 will quickly charge via R4 and the level at pin 11 falls thus enabling the counter. The 14020 then counts clock pulses until the selected counter output goes high. D1 provides a discharge path for C3 when the power is disconnected.

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