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autonomous playing flute listening to light impulses

As our first project Whistleblower is part of an autonomously playing orchestra which reacts to light impulses given by an old, converted record player acting as conductor. As part of this big picture, our first semester saw the creation of our autonomous flute.


The biggest part of this project was to get an idea of how we could produce noices. Our initial idea was to create an digital rain maker by shaking the instrument with servo motors but soon we realized, that the servo motors weren't strong enough.
Later on we thought about groggers made of an piece of wood and an star shaped object which we wanted to spin with the help of a cordless screwdriver.


Nevertheless we were fascinated by our third idea – flutes. So we started ideating, how we could use this concept for us. Our initial idea was to use a wooden spoon to push a bellow which which should then make noises under this pressure.


It didn't take us long to realize that neither our servo motor was strong enough, nor was the bellow big enough to produce sounds so we started tp think bigger and to produce our own, larger bellow, which we equipped with a real flute.
During the process of prototyping we realized that we had to tape some of the wholes in the flute so that the sound was endurable. Also we had to increase the end of the flute a little so that the air that was pressed out of the bellow would meet the mouthpiece of the flute.

Code & Interaction

Listening to light impulses from an old, converted record player we needed to implement a light sensor that was used to detect those impulses.
With each impulse, the bellow should then be actuated once and the flute played once.

Ideation & Prototyping
Project Info
Supervised by
Prof. Michael Schuster

Technical fundamentals

Semester 1

WS 2016/2017

My Part

Concept Ideation

Hardware prototyping

Arduino programming