Selkirk Marine Museum Piano

From Squirrel's Lair
Project: Selkirk Marine Museum Piano (I)
Description: Museum display that will play audio when it detects the presence of visitors.
Skillset(s) :

3D Modelling 3D Printing Electronics Programming Woodworking

Project Type(s) :

Museum Display

The project sits on top of a piano in the museum as part of a bigger display on music during the travels of the ship. When it detects the presence of visitors it plays some music.

How we did it

We initially planned on housing the electronics right inside the piano, without making alterations to it to sense visitor presence or for the sound to get out. So, we used an integrated microwave doppler board (an RCWL-0516) to detect movement, and a surface mount speaker to play the music. This means the entire interaction with the museum environment can be hidden inside a display case completely. A Raspberry Pi Pico monitors the RCWL-0516 and when movement is detected, it chooses a random track and sends serial commands to the DFPlayer Mini to start playing. Additional triggers while playing do not have any effect.

The RCWL-0516 is more sensitive in when facing certain directions so it is mounted on a small mast that allows it to be turned 360 degrees for a simple way to adjust sensitivity.

It was then decided that we would use a separate display after all, so we built the case out of baltic birch plywood. This worked even better for the surface mount speaker and made no difference to the electronics.

The device is powered by a 5VDC supply.

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