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Another recent project is a cat entertainment center using a combination of servo controlled mice and feathers. For the prototype I used a wooden wine case (6 pack) and inserted 1-1/2 inch tubes and servos for two mice. A slot on the side uses another servo to pop out a feather. It has been very popular with Nebbie, our six month old kitty.

Features include the following:

  • Dual ATMega328 chips (I2C master and slave)
  • Adafruit 16-Channel 12-bit PWM/Servo Driver – I2C interface – PCA9685
  • Bluefruit LE – Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE 4.0) – nRF8001 Breakout
  • Two Piezo buzzers for mouselike sounds
  • Two small vibration motors to simulate scatching
  • Two IR LED emitters/receivers to detect cat proximity
  • iPhone to control each servo / sounds
  • Automated mode to pop mice out and in

One of the challenges was to make it robust enough to handle abuse from the kitty while at the same time “NOT HURTING” my kitty. Nebbie has pulled out the servos several times. She also runs over to the box as soon as she hears the servos power up.