Dual Core Processor, Bluetooth enabled, Steampunk Christmas tree.

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Well maybe dual core processor is pushing it a bit, but under the snow in the bucket are two Arduino boards, one Uno and one Nano. The Uno looks after flashing 34 high brightness LEDs and the Nano with a bluetooth board uses a OLED display. Connected to an Android phone the time is set and the display shows a mixture of an Analog and a digital clock. This display is almost exactly the same size as the display on a Baird mechanical TV.

In fact the whole point of this project was to produce a science oriented tree and this tree has that in bucket loads. The electronics, a stabilised power supply board and a DC motor driving a worm drive are packed into the flower pot. The motor drives a shaft half a metre long, through a glass tube to the moon at the top of the tree. The small solar system is viewed as if the moon were at the centre and so the earth and sun rotate around it. This is the view that the astronauts onboard Apollo missions saw.

There are almost fifty ‘Inventor Tags’ hanging from the tree and these show inventors and their inventions, ranging from tinned food, the vacuum flask and the x box to the great discoveries of Sir Isaac Newton (born on Christmas Day), Robert Hooke and Marie Curie. The Voyager missions are shown and there are nine inventors whose initials make up the word Christmas.

The branches and leaves are built using metals mined in Britain over 2000 years ago, Copper and Tin from Cornwall and Gold from Wales. Over 20 metres of fine Copper wire was used to wire everything up. There are travel labels from the early 20th century on the plant pot and even pop music has a place, with Ziggy Stardust hanging as Major Tom from the earth and the Travelling Wilburys – Handle with care – on the plant pot. Great Nobel Prize winners along with some dubious scientists hang from the branches.

The power supply consists of two six volt lantern batteries wrapped up to look like a steam engine, the tag reads To Master James Watt, from Santa Christmas 1746.

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