Making Harry Potter Wand turn on Lights with IR Sensors

I'm building a circuit for a friend of mine. He's a huge Harry Potter fan so the idea is that he can use an interactive wand from the wizarding world of Harry Potter in Orlando to turn on LED tape. It's a pretty simple circuit that will have an IR emitter and an IR receiver that measure intensity of light at those wavelengths, and use the information to turn on or off LED tape. The LED tape will be powered by external power source and controlled by a MOSFET.

The wand is an IR reflector so this is where I need help. I need help in writing a program that will measure IR intensities for establishing what the minimum level of IR light that the wand will bounce back (so that only the wand is changing anything and not somebody walking by or something like that) and then using that level to trigger the MOSFET.

Any and all help would be greatly appreciated!

Phoenixlord21:
The wand is an IR reflector so this is where I need help.

Yes, because nearly everything is an IR reflector.

At the Wizarding World they use IR cameras with IR LEDs next to the lens. They can use that to track the motion of the IR reflectors.

The original Wii remote had a ‘camera’ that tracks and reports the position of bright IR spots in the field of view. It was used to calculate the position of the remote with respect to the two IR LEDs in the “light bar” you put by the TV screen.

If you put an IR LED near a Wii camera like that it might let you detect motion of the wand. Google ‘wiimote ir tracking’ to find more details.

1 Like

Wouldn't it be a whole lot easier to put an emitter into the wand?

aarg:
Wouldn't it be a whole lot easier to put an emitter into the wand?

That would mean hacking on a $45 wand.

johnwasser:
That would mean hacking on a $45 wand.

Well, magic doesn't come cheap... :slight_smile:

I'm curious if this project ever went anywhere, did it? I'm really interested in doing something similar.

They actually sell a remote that does what you are looking to do. It's a TV remote and more wand.