Thanks to Lewis for sending in this awesome project! Check out the project over at Make.
In the iPhone ad “Powerful,” actors launched a group of model rockets with an iPhone. You can view the ad here. I thought this was insanely cool, but in typical Apple fashion, I couldn’t find out how they did it. I decided to take matters into my own hands and build my own system from scratch using a Raspberry Pi, Web IO Pi Framework, Relay Board and a modern smartphone.
The software portion of this project isn’t too hard. I used the WebIOPi framework to control pin 17 on the Raspberry Pi. I chose this framework because it made it very simple to control a GPIO pin. You can download the html and python file from my github. You can also learn more about configuring WebIOPi here.
I attempted to build my own relay board, but I ended up using a relay board I already had. The one in the video is an eight channel because that is all I could acquire for this project but all you need is a single channel board. The relay board completes the circuit between the 9V battery and model rocket starter. The Raspberry Pi and Relay board were powered by a USB battery.
Finally I used this pocket router to provide the wi-fi hotspot. I picked this because it is easier to power than a full-sized router and the hotspot on my phone didn’t work.
Each Friday is PiDay here at Adafruit! Be sure to check out our posts, tutorials and new Raspberry Pi related products. Adafruit has the largest and best selection of Raspberry Pi accessories and all the code & tutorials to get you up and running in no time!