Sunrise Machine with the Tessel 2

Contributors: lyzadanger
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Some time ago, I began to have a hankering to be able to automatically photograph or film the sunrise wherever I may happen to be. I liked the idea of a little machine that could determine when the sun would rise in my location and take some time lapse images of it. Thus was born the idea of a Sunrise Machine.

The Sunrise Machine can, based on your latitude and longitude, automatically record the sunrise at your location using a basic USB webcam. It captures still images over time and creates time-lapse movies from them in MPEG-4 and animated-GIF formats. If you choose, it can also tweet those resulting GIFs on your behalf. You can configure it to record different day-sun events—sunset, solar noon, the start of the golden hour, even nautical twilight. You don't have to tweet the results, if that's not your thing, and you can always create a manual time-lapse video at any time by pressing a button. All still images and videos are stored for you on a USB thumb drive.

The Sunrise Machine

I built an enclosure for my Sunrise Machine out of an old book. However, you can put yours in whatever you like, or not bother with an enclosure at all.

The Sunrise Machine open