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GAS LEAkAGE ALARM

LPG gas is supplied in pressurised steel cylinders. As this gas is heavier than air, when it
leaks from a cylinder it flows along floor and tends to settle in low spots such as a basement. This can cause fire or suffocation if not dealt with. Here is a circuit that detects the leakage of LPG gas and alerts the user through audio-visual indications. Fig. 1 shows the circuit of the gas leakage alarm. The circuit operates off a 9V PP3 battery. Zener diode ZD1 is used to convert 9V into 5V DC to drive the gas sensor module. The SEN-1327 gas sensor module from RhydoLABZ is used in this circuit. Its output goes high when the gas level reaches or exceeds certain point. A preset in the module is used to set the threshold. Interfacing with the sensor module is done through a 4-pin SIP header.

Fig. 1: Circuit for gas leakage alarm

Pin details of the gas sensor module are shown in Fig. 2. An MQ-6 gas sensor is used in the gas sensor module. As per its datasheet, it has high sensitivity to propane, butane, isobutene, LPG and natural gas. The sensor can also be used to detect combustible gases, especially methane. This circuit has been tested with LPG gas and was found to work satisfactorily.

Fig. 2: Pin details of gas sensor module Whenever there is LPG concentration of 1000 ppm (parts per million) in the area, the OUT pin of the sensor module goes high. This signal drives timer IC 555, which is wired as an astable multivibrator. The multivibrator basically works as a tone generator. Output pin 3 of IC 555 is connected to LED1 and speaker-driver transistor SL100 through current-limiting resistors R5 and R4, respectively. LED1 glows and the alarm sounds to alert the user of gas leakage. The pitch of the tone can be changed by varying preset VR1. Use a suitable heat-sink for transistor SL100.

FM BOOSTER

Here is a low-cost circuit of an FM booster that can be used to listen to programmes from
distant FM stations clearly. The circuit comprises a common-emitter tuned RF preamplifier wired around VHF/UHF transistor 2SC2570. (Only C2570 is annotated on the transistor body.) Assemble the circuit on a good-quality PCB (preferably, glass-epoxy). Adjust input/ output trimmers (VC1/VC2) for maximum gain. Input coil L1 consists of four turns of 20SWG enamelled copper wire (slightly space wound) over 5mm diameter former. It is tapped at the first turn from ground lead side. Coil L2 is similar to L1, but hasb only three turns. Pin configuration of transistor 2SC2570 is shown in the figure.

SHUTTER GUARD

This sensitive vibration sensor is exclusively made for shops to protect against burglary. It
will detect any mechanical or acoustic vibration in its vicinity when somebody tries to break the shutter and immediately switch on a lamp and sound a warning alarm. A 15-minute time delay after switch-on allows sufficient time for the shop owner to close the shutter. The front end of the circuit has a timer built around the popular binary counter IC CD4060 (IC1) to provide 15-minute time delay for the remaining circuitry to turn on. Resistors R3 and R4 and capacitor C2 will make Q9 output high after 15 minutes. Diode D1 inhibits the clock input (pin 11) to keep the output high till the power is switched off. Blinking LED1 indicates the oscillation of IC1. The high output from IC1 is used to enable reset pin 4 of IC2 so that it can function freely. Transistor T1 amplifies the piezo-sensor signal and triggers monostable IC2. The base of transistor T1 is biased using a standard piezo element that acts as a small capacitor and flexes freely in response to mechanical vibrations so that the output of IC2 is high till the prefixed time period. In the standby mode, the alarm circuit built around IC3 remains dormant as it does not get current. Timing components R8 and C6 make the output of IC2 high for a period of three minutes. When any mechanical vibration (caused by even a slight movement) disturbs the piezo element, trigger pin 2 of IC2 momentarily changes its state and the output of IC2 goes high. This triggers triac 1 and the alarm circuit activates. Triac BT136 completes the lamp circuit by activating its gate through resistor R9. IC UM3561 (IC4) generates a tone simulating the police siren with R11 as its oscillation-controlling resistor. Zener diode ZD1 provides stable 3.1V DC for the tone-generating IC. Assemble the circuit on a generalpurpose PCB and enclose in a suitable, shockproof case. Connect the piezo element to the circuit by using a single-core shielded wire. Glue a circular rubber washer on the fine side of the piezo element and fix it on the shutter frame with the washer facing the frame so that the piezo element is flexible to sense the vibrations. Fix the lamp and the speaker on the outer side and the remaining parts inside the case. Since triac is used in the circuit, most points in the PCB will be at mains lethal potential. So it is advised not to touch any part of the circuit while testing.

SPY EAR

What binoculars do to improve your vision, this personal sound enhancer circuit does for
listening. This light-weight gadget produces an adjustable gain on sounds picked up from the built-in high-sensitivity condenser microphone. So you can hear what you have been missing. With a 6V (4X1.5V) battery, it produces good results. As shown in Fig. 1, a small signal amplifier is built around transistor BC547 (T1). Transistor T1 and the related components amplify the sound signals picked up by the condenser microphone (MIC). The amplified signal from the preamplifier stage is fed to input pin 3 of IC LM386N (IC1) through capacitor C2 (100nF) and volume control VR1 (10-kilo-ohm log). A decoupling network comprising resistor R5 and capacitor C3 provides the preamplifier block with a clean supply voltage.

Fig. 1: Circuit for spy ear Audio amplifier IC LM386N (IC1) is designed for operation with power supplies in the 4-15V DC range. It is housed in a standard 8-pin DIL package, consumes very small quiescent current and is ideal for battery-powered portable applications. The processed output signal from capacitor C2 goes to one end of volume control VR1. The

wiper is taken to pin 3 of LM386N audio output amplifier. Note that the R6-C4 network is used to RF-decouple positive-supply pin 6 and R8-C7 is an optional Zobel network that ensures high frequency stability when feeding an inductive headphone load. Capacitor C6 (22uF, 16V) wired between pin 7 and ground gives additional ripple rejection. The output of LM386N power amplifier can safely drive a standard 32-ohm monophonic headphone/earphone. Assemble the circuit on a small general-purpose PCB and house in a suitable metallic enclosure with an integrated battery holder and headphone/earphone socket as shown in Fig. 2. Fit the on/off switch (S1), volume control (VR1) and power indicator (LED1) on the enclosure. Finally, fit the condenser microphone (MIC) on the front side of the enclosure and link it to the input of the preamplifier via a short length of the shielded wire.

Fig. 2: Compact unit of spy ear