Measure time like an egyptian with an Arduino hourglass

2015-11-18 14:53:18 views

Measure time like an egyptian with an Arduino hourglass

Zoe RomanoJuly 27th, 2015


     Todo is the italian design consultancy and creative agency taking care of Arduino and Genuino brand identity and interviewed in this previous blogpost.

      Last year, among other projects, they worked on an unconventional communication campaign to narrate the re-opening of the well-known Turin’s Egyptian Museum, displaying a collection of over 30,000 ancient pieces.

The campaign’s goal was to hold people’s attention over six months  before the official opening of the Museum and be able to speak to a  broad national and international audience.

      TODO created an open air installation composed by an  almost-4-meter-tall hourglass (with a hidden mechanism running on  Arduino) that had to work day and night, for six months and over the  winter. According to Wikipedia, this hourglass could be the 4th biggest  of its kind in the world!

       The main challenge was that they had to make sure that the very last  grain inside the hourglass would fall on the day of the Museum’s  inauguration.

       The installation was created thanks to many collaborators among which  Gabriele Gambotto who developed the electronic part based on the  Arduino Yún on which they added a custom shield ( See pic below),  connected to various sensors and a precision scale. The sand-like  material passed through a valve and a long screw conveyor controlled by a  mot