how to control a ceiling fan with ac motor (using arduino)?

hey y’all,

first post here. not a total noob tho. i don’t have much experience with ac power and i’m a little nervous about shocking myself to death (but that’s a different post altogether). any help is appreciated.

soooo i’m working on this art project. simply put, i need to control a ceiling fan with some arduino business. the fan obviously uses an AC motor. i do NOT need to be able to set the fan to any particular steady speed.

to explain in more detail, i am looking for a way to turn the fan ON for a specific duration of time so that it will begin ramping up to maximum speed. as it is ramping up in speed, i hope to be able to turn the fan OFF, so that the fan begins to slow down as it loses momentum. as the fan slows down in its off state, i hope to turn it back on again so that it speeds up, and then i hope to turn it off again so it slows down, etc, etc, repeat ad nauseum. basically, i just hope to turn the fan on and off for somewhat random durations. you get the idea, right?

i am not really sure what the circuit for something like this would look like. i think this is what AC relays are for, but i’m not sure.

is this as simple as hooking up one of the digital outs of the arduino to the input on an AC relay with a fan on the output of the relay? what kind of relay, if any, do i want? what exactly does that circuit look like? is this a good relay for that task? http://www.vetco.net/catalog/product_info.php?products_id=12844&gclid=CJbeluGzx8MCFYeBfgod0UkAjw

any and all help is appreciated.

I'm pretty sure that if you try to continually turn on/off an AC (induction) motor like in a ceiling fan that you'll overheat its windings.

When you're planning on using a relay for repeated on/off cycles of AC current you should use a solid state relay (SSR). An electromechanical relay like you have linked is probably capable of hundreds of thousands of actuations but there is still a limit and the continual clicking would drive you nutty.