hen house lighting controller with digital timer and light detector

Pictured below is a new hen house lighting controller we recently made.

hen house lighting controller with programmable digital timer and light detector overrideThis device is designed to controller artificial lighting in hen and other poultry housing to trick the birds into thinking it is summer even during the winter so that their egg yield is kept high throughout the year. It is based around our REUK Poultry Lighting System but with a few modifications.

This particular version makes use of both a light detector and a programmable digital timer. The user sets the timer to turn ON before dawn and turn OFF after dusk. During the hours of darkness between the timer turning ON and dawn, and then between dusk and timer turning OFF, the artificial lights are turned on. The output from this device passes through a low-drop 12V regulator to protect LED bulbs from excessive voltage.

With the timer turned ON for 15 hours per day (e.g. from 4am to 7pm), the level of light in the hen house will be optimised for the birds’ laying; and the light detector prevents the artificial lighting being on when not necessary (due to ambient lighting) which reduces the cost and size of the solar panel and battery used to power the system.

If you need any type of automatic poultry lighting or door opening controller, email neil@reuk.co.uk with details of your exact requirements.

Poultry Lighting Controller with LVD and Display

We have been selling a selection of poultry lighting controllers for many years now – devices designed to stimulate egg production in the winter months using artificial light at dusk and/or before dawn to trick the birds.

Pictured below is a bespoke lighting controller we recently made for a more advanced poultry lighting controller including a double voltage regulator so that more LED bulbs can be used in a large poultry house, an automatic low voltage disconnect, and an LCD display to show system status and for use in setting up the system.

Poultry lighting controller with low voltage disconnect and display

This device will automatically detect dusk and turn on the lights in the poultry house for a user-programmable number of hours (including zero). The lights then turn off (if they had been on) and remain off for 9 hours to give the birds a 9 hour sleep and a 15 hour day for maximum egg production. The lights then turn on in the early morning and remain on until dawn when natural light is bright enough to take over.

display for poultry lighting controller with lvd

Dawn and dusk are detected using a light dependent resistor, and the user can calibrate the exact light level which they consider to be at the threshold between day and dusk, and between night and dawn.

To protect the battery from being run too low of charge and being damaged, the user can programme into the device three trigger voltages: a voltage below which the on board red LED will turn on as an early warning, a voltage below which the output (to the lights if on) will be turned off, and a voltage above which the low voltage disconnect will be cancelled restoring the outputs automatically when the battery is recharged.

manual override active on poultry lighting controller

There is also a manual override option which enables the lights to be turned on manually at any time (low voltage disconnect permitting) when the poultry house needs to be cleaned or the eggs to be collected etc.

At all times the backlit LCD display shows the status of the system including the currently measured battery voltage, whether the LVD is engaged, whether the outputs are on or off, the current position in the cycle DAY, DUSK, SLEEP, PREDAWN, DAWN (or MANUAL when the override is active), and the currently measured light level relative to the user set threshold.

If you need any kind of poultry lighting solution, please email neil@reuk.co.uk with details of your exact requirements and we should be able to put something suitable together for you.

Poultry Lighting Controller with Low Voltage Warning

We have been selling poultry lighting controllers for the last eight years designed to increase egg production during the long nights of winter. See here for details: Poultry Lighting Controllers.

Pictured below is a modified version of our standard Mark 3 lighting controller (sold here: REUK Super Poultry Lighting Controller) to which we have added a low battery voltage warning LED.

poultry lighting controller with built in low voltage warningThis modified version is designed primarily for use in lighting set ups where a solar panel is not used, and so the battery has to be charged by the user. When the battery voltage powering the controller and connected lighting falls below 12.0V, the red LED turns on to show the user that they need to recharge the battery as soon as possible to ensure reliable operation and battery longevity.

Contact neil@reuk.co.uk if you need any kind of poultry lighting controller with details of your exact requirements.

Low Voltage Disconnect with Dual Regulated Outputs

Pictured below is a low voltage disconnect circuit with two individually switchable 12V regulated outputs ideally suited for use with voltage sensitive LED spotlights and similar in battery powered systems.

Low voltage disconnect with two regulated outputsThis device is effectively a dual output version of the 12V Regulator with Low Voltage Disconnect which we sell in the REUK Shop. Each output has its own low dropout 12 Volt regulator (LM2940) and can supply up to 1 Amp.

This particular dual unit is most suited to LED lighting scenarios in which there are two strings of bulbs which you need to be able to switch on or off individually – i.e. String 1 on, String 2 on, or both String 1&2 on.

Should the battery voltage fall below 11.9 Volts then the low voltage disconnect will cut the power supply to the outputs until the battery voltage has gone back above 12.5 Volts.

We sell a huge range of low voltage disconnects, 12V regulators, and mixtures of the two, so please contact neil@reuk.co.uk with details of your exact requirements if you cannot find what you need in the REUK Shop.

Dawn Dusk Lighting Controller with Regulated Output

Pictured below is a modification of our standard Mini REUK Dawn/Dusk Lighting Controller which has the addition of a regulator on the output so that it can be connected directly to LED lighting, and connections to enable a PV solar panel to be connected to the battery via the board.

REUK Dawn Dusk Lighting Controller with Regulated 12V OutputWe used an LM2940CT-12 regulator on the output side which will supply up to 10 Watts of 12.0V output to protect sensitive LED lighting from excessive voltage from the solar charged battery. (If the battery voltage falls below around 12.3V, the output voltage will fall to around 0.3-0.5V below the battery voltage).

We added a Schottky Diode to solar panel input so that the battery will not drain charge through the solar panel at night. A Schottky type diode was chosen as only around 0.3V of solar voltage is dropped through it compared to the 0.6V+ typically dropped through a standard silicon type diode.

Playhouse Lighting Controller with LVD

Pictured below is the connection diagram for a controller we have built to be used in a child’s playhouse. The playhouse will have a solar charged battery which will be used to supply power to three LED spotlights with a light switch, a small fan to circulate air and prevent the playhouse getting damp or too hot, and a dual cigar lighter socket with USB sockets which will be used to charge battery powered gadgets.

Connections for low voltage disconnect with twin outputs - regulated for LED lighting and to power a fan for ventilationAs the playhouse will be used by children, safeguards have been fitted to prevent the battery from becoming excessively depleted and permanently damaged.

In order to prevent the lights being left on and forgotten, when the light switch is turned on, a timer starts and if after one hour the light switch has not been turned off, the lights turn off automatically and will not turn back on until the light switch is toggled.

The output from the controller to the LED lighting is regulated to 12.0V so that excessive voltage (particularly when the batteries are being charged) does not damage the voltage sensitive bulbs.

To reduce power consumption, the fan which is used to ventilate the playhouse is turned on for just one hour every six hours automatically by the controller. The output to the fan is not regulated as the fan is rated for use with up to 18V, and if the battery voltage is high it is because there is or has been a lot of sunshine. Therefore the faster fan speed will prevent the playhouse getting too hot and stuffy.

In order to prevent the battery from running too low on charge, an automatic low voltage disconnect is incorporated. When the battery voltage falls below 11.9V, the outputs to the fan and lighting turn off, and only turn back on again when the measured battery voltage exceeds 12.4V.

The cigar lighter / USB socket is connected directly to the battery as the gadgets being charged by it will not draw much current for long if left connected since their batteries will get full and charging will stop automatically.

If you need a controller such as this, or with any of the features it has, email neil@reuk.co.uk with details of your exact requirements.

Simple Low Voltage Disconnect with Two Outputs

Pictured below is a low voltage disconnect circuit with two outputs.

low voltage disconnect (LVD) with two outputs to share the loadWe make a basic low voltage disconnect (LVD) designed specifically for use with low voltage LED lighting which incorporates a low-dropout 12V regulator. This device ensures that:

  • the battery does not get damaged by running too low on charge. If the measured voltage falls below 11.9V the output loads are switched off and not switched on again until the voltage is measured to be 12.5V or above.
  • the LED lighting is not damaged by excessive voltage (>13V) – particularly important with solar powered lighting systems where battery voltage can get up to 15V.

The pictured LVD/regulator is different in that it has dual outputs. The LM2940CT-12 voltage regulator is limited to around 1 Amp of output load, so our standard unit is not suitable in cases where the total LED lighting load exceeds around 8-10 Watts. Where the total load is more than around 2 Amps, we use an LT1084CP-12 regulator on the output side, but these are very expensive. Therefore where the LED lighting load is around 10-18 Watts, and can be split into a pair of separate lighting circuits, we simply make a double output regulator and split the load.

If you need something along these lines, email neil@reuk.co.uk with details of your requirements.

New Mini 12 Volt Regulator with Fuse and Switch Terminals

mini 12v regulator with fuse and switch terminals

Pictured above is the new miniaturised version of our old (but still popular) 12 Volt Regulator with Fuse and Switch terminals designed to protect LED lighting and other sensitive electronics from damage when connected directly to a 12V battery which may give out up to 15 Volts when being charged (whether by solar, wind, or plug-in charger).

The new version is just 45mm x 45mm x 20mm in size – less than half the size of the original and also a bit cheaper too and still supplied with a couple of spare fuses. Click here for more details or to buy: Mini 12 Volt Regulator with Fuse and Switch Terminals.