Measuring UV Exposure when you’re NOT out in the Sun

We all worry about UV exposure when we are at the beach or spending unusually long hours outside in the sun. What we don’t worry about is the ways we can still expose ourselves to UV when we are NOT out in the sun, or when we think we are protected from UV.

UV exposure is cumulative and it is not possible to measure the extent of exposure with a UV measuring system.

The idea for this assignment was to use the Sparkfun Arduino SI1145 visible-UV-IR sensor for this purpose.

The first roadblock was the complete lack of any coding experience. I have tweaked Scratch and R to suit project needs but never “written” code from scratch and was very enthusiastic and hopeful about this assignment and didn’t want to limit the project to a blinking LED. The Windows interface posed an additional initial challenge but Stacey and Jennifer saved the day!

This is what the initial setup looked like

WP_20150922_12_57_40_Pro

The final code

The output – indoor

WP_20150922_13_16_38_Pro (2)

The output – outdoor

WP_20150922_13_18_27_Pro (2)

It will be interesting to take the system on a drive with me even on a cloudy day, or even check artificial light sources for UV radiation

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