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Looking for good ~2w pointer for a cool project

mkronberg

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Hi Guys,

First time on the forums. Forgive me if that was already addressed, given I couldn't find another similar thread.

I am an engineering geek and was working on some computer vision stuff. (essentially a sentry gun) just for the fun of it.

I wanted to attach to it a fairly powerful laser, to burn simple things like paper, cardboard and thin black plastic (something like this fantastic video: 2W 445nm Blue Laser versus 11 CD cases - YouTube)

According to the video, it's a 2W 445nm Blue Laser.

Where's a good place to buy such a thing, as cheap as possible? I live in Brazil so international shipping is a must (bonus if it's free)

My early project can be seen here: Automated Sentry Gun - Valve Portal // Arduino + Python W.I.P. - YouTube


thanks a bunch
 

midias

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Do you have any idea how dangerous a 2w laser is?

last thing we need is an automated 2W laser blinding random people
 
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jimdt7

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You need to buy safety goggles first !
2W is a lot of power, you should go with 1W !

Jim
 

mkronberg

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Hi Guys,

I do not intend to target people with this thing, only small objects for the fun of it, on my garage or another closed/safe space. I plan to operate by myself and film the results to youtube them.

I'm a pretty responsible guy, and i'm sure I wont blind anyone for fun. Not a kid for a few years already.

I was researching for protection goggles on ebay but I also have no idea what are actual good ones and what are the fake ones. Any recommendations?

People who PMd me: Will reply when i'm home. Thanks.
 

mkronberg

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Thanks jimdt7,

So i understand that different goggles protect different wavelengths correct?
So this one protects this range: 190-540nm, right? Regardless of power? (say, between 50mw to 2w or something)
 

bobhaha

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They are rated on an OD scale. The higher the OD the more they block. OD 4 or more is recommended for use with 1W+. But I personally have a pair from laser glow which are OD 7, which I feel safer to use than an OD 4 pair. But that's just me.

Also, as a side note, I see you are using an arduino... this is just for the pan and tilt function I assume?

What programming language/software did you use to make the webcam output on your computer screen. Believe it or not, I was going to do the exact same thing as a university assignment, but instead of tracking and firing... it would save the the XY position on a wall, of any point which I shoot my laser pointer on.
 

mkronberg

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Hi bobhaha,

The setup on the video is one arduino uno to control both servos (pan and tilt), and to light that very low power red laser dot. Even using only that, the USB power was not nearly enough so I connected an external power supply to the arduino.

The software part on the PC is all in Python (the one inside arduino is obviously Processing), using the very interesting OpenCV library for Python (Welcome - OpenCV Wiki). It has a very complete set of tools to program computer vision on your application. It's also very complex to program with it, IMHO, even if you got python experience. It's through this library that I display the cam output on the screen.

On the video you can see that I ouput a few different screens from the camera, each one displaying something a bit different. As I was trying to target green stuff with a specific shade of the color, regargless of diferences in lighting, this helped me improve my accuracy. Painstaking work, I dare say. In your case, just trying to find a very bright spot might just work.

Your project seems a bit more simple than what I wrote. I remember seeing some code on the web using python and Open CV to specifically find a green laser point on the wall, and I even used some of that code on my project. I'll try to find it for you.
 

bobhaha

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Well you inspired me to start work on the assignment...



I'm using JMyron and a HD webcam... getting pretty good results so far :D
 

mkronberg

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Awesome! You're getting very nice results indeed. I wonder how your camera/code works with different lighting conditions. I had a few problems with my setup when i move from a place with incandescent light (yellow) to fluorescent (white).

At least this thread was worth something. :beer:
 

bobhaha

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I had a similar problem... but the way I overcame that problem was with a few factors.

Firstly I made use of similarity detection and secondly keeping manual control over auto exposure. Next step is to work out how to code auto exposure controls into the program and tweak some things. Also would like to take a screen shot, use that as a reference to ignore and then anything in the foreground which changes will go through the detection program. Might work out much more sensitive that way. Which is what I will need, running this camera in 640x480 resolution... :/
 




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