Simple Electrical/Timing Switch

Complete newbie to electronic controls. I would like to convert a mechanical switchingy process into an electriconically controlled process including the ability to adjust switch open/close timing. I am using standard AC. Is this possible using the Arduino starter Uno kit.


Some sort of interface will be needed to switch the AC. There are several approaches, this is an easy and relatively safe one:

Thank you for your response. Again being a complete idiot when it comes to electricity and circuits, here is in essence what i am doing and what I would like to do. Currently I am using a spring lever style micro-switch to activate an actuator. The actuator needs to remain "on" for a specific "time". I am currently using 120v AC power source. I would like to use a similar process but replace the mechanical switch with one that can be controlled elecronically so the timing of the "switch" can me precisely controlled. So... are you recommending that I use the tail to convert to DC control the "switching" with the Arduino and then reconvert to AC. Sorry about my electrical ignorance, I am very new to this. Thank you!

Arduino digital outputs are 5V (when on) and can only supply about 20mA. But the Power Switch Tail will accept one of those as input, and uses it as the control signal to switch the 120VAC. It also keeps the Arduino isolated from the 120VAC with an optical isolator, which is a very nice safety feature.

You say “precise” control – just how precise is “precise”? The resonator in an Uno that provides the system clock should be accurate to about ±0.5%. Is that precise enough?

Yes that would be precise enough. Thank you for all your help. I believe I can now move forward with the Arduino purchase as well as the tail purchase. Great Help!

Great! Enjoy!