WaterLamp is a lamp that was designer to interact with users. Its brightness can be controlled by adjusting water level and its design can be changed, to fit pouring action or the user's preference, by replacing a laser cut acrylic sheet.


What have you made?

WaterLamp is an experimental project I created at Bit Studio, a company I am working for. It made of glass, an Arduino UNO, an LED strip, and an ultrasonic sensor. The brightness of the LED is controlled through the Arduino which gets a signal from the ultrasonic sensor.

What gave you the initial inspiration?

I got this project idea when I noticed water level in a fish tank as it depleted and left stains behind. That made me wanted to control things with water level. And my first thought was controlling brightness of a lamp.

What is the original idea behind this project?

This project was designed and developed from my daily life experiences, observing our behaviors while we use ordinary objects; lamp, kettle, electric fan, etc. Then I mixed something irrelevant in to create a new object which creates a new experience. As for this project, I combined pouring water with brightness of a lamp.

How does it work?

Water quantity in the tank is a significant variation here. The lamp brightness comes from the Arduino and the ultrasonic sensor which was installed at the top of the water tank. When the user pours water in, the sensor will measure increase of water level and send the data to the Arduino, which will control the LED brightness. To dim the lamp, turn on a valve at the back of the tank to decrease water level, therefore, turning off the lamp can be done by draining all the water.

How long did it take to make it real?

Two weeks, from the design to the finished prototype.

How did you build it?

1. The tank was built from clear glass sheets seald together with waterproof silicone sealant. A valve was installed at its bottom.
2. Installed an Arduino UNO and an ultrasonic sensor at the top of the tank. The sensor was carefully placed in parallel with the inner bottom surface of the tank.
3. Assembled an acrylic base. Left a gap between the base and the tank in order to install an LED strip. Then placed the tank on the base after the LED was installed.
4. Laser cut a designed shape (a lamp, for example) out of a black acrylic sheet. Attached magnetic strips, both on the tank surface and the laser cut sheet, to make replacing the lamp silhouette easy.