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Automatic Street Light

An introduction:

Needs no manual operation for switching ON and OFF. When there is a need of light it automatically switches ON. When darkness rises to a certain level then sensor circuit gets activated and switches ON and when there is other source of light i.e. daytime, the street light gets OFF. The sensitiveness of the street light can also be adjusted. In our project we have used four L.E.D as a symbol of street lamp, but for high power switching one can connect Relay (electromagnetic switch) at the output of pin 3 of I.C 555 that will make easy to turn ON/OFF any electrical appliances that are connected through relay.

Automatic Street Light Project, using Timer IC 555

Principle :

This circuit uses a popular timer I.C 555. I.C 555 is connected as comparator with pin-6 connected with positive rail, the output goes high(1) when the trigger pin 2 is at lower then 1/3rd level of the supply voltage. Conversely the output goes low (0) when it is above 1/3rd level. So small change in the voltage of pin-2 is enough to change the level of output (pin-3) from 1 to 0 and 0 to 1. The output has only two states high and low and can not remain in any intermediate stage. It is powered by a 6V battery for portable use. The circuit is economic in power consumption. Pin 4, 6 and 8 is connected to the positive supply and pin 1 is grounded. To detect the present of an object we have used LDR and a source of light.


LDR is a special type of resistance whose value depends on the brightness of the light which is falling on it. It has resistance of about 1 mega ohm when in total darkness, but a resistance of only about 5k ohms when brightness illuminated. It responds to a large part of light spectrum. We have made a potential divider circuit with LDR and 100K variable resistance connected in series. We know that voltage is directly proportional to conductance so more voltage we will get from this divider when LDR is getting light and low voltage in darkness. This divided voltage is given to pin 2 of IC 555. Variable resistance is so adjusted that it crosses potential of 1/3rd in brightness and fall below 1/3rd in darkness.

Sensitiveness can be adjusted by this variable resistance. As soon as LDR gets dark the voltage of pin 2 drops 1/3rd of the supply voltage and pin 3 gets high and LED or buzzer which is connected to the output gets activated.

Picture of Automatic Street Light Project

Automatic Street Light circuit diagram

Component used :

9v Battery with strip


L.D.R (Light Depending Resistance)

I.C NE555 with Base

L.E.D (Light Emitting Diode) 5 pieces. (If using  white color then 4 Pcs)

Variable Resistance of 47 KΩ

P.C.B (Printed Circuit Board of 555 or Vero board.

Circuit Diagram of Automatic Street Light


a) Battery: For 9v power supply we can use 6pcs dry cell or 6F22 9v single piece battery.


b)Switch:Any general purpose switch can be used. Switch is used as circuit breaker.


c) L.D.R: (Light Depending Resistance)

       It is a special type of resistance whose value depends on the brightness of light which is falling on it. It has resistance of about 1mega ohm when in total darkness, but a resistance of only about 5k ohms when brightness illuminated. It responds to a large part of light spectrum.

d) L.E.D: (Light Emitting Diode)

     A diode is a component that only allows electricity to flow one way. It can be thought as a sort of one way street for electrons. Because of this characteristic, diode are used to transform or rectify  AC voltage into a DC voltage. Diodes have two connections, an anode and a cathode. The cathode      is the end on the schematic with the point of the triangle pointing towards a line. In other words, the triangle points toward that cathode. The anode is, of course, the opposite end. Current flows from the anode to the cathode.


           Light emitting diodes, or LEDs, differ from regular diodes in that when a voltage is applied, they emit light. This light can be red (most common), green, yellow, orange, blue (not very  common), or infa red. LEDs are used as indicators, transmitters, etc. Most likely, a LED will never burn out like a regular lamp will and requires many times less current. Because LEDs act like regular diodes and will form a short if connected between + and -, a current limiting resistor is used to prevent that very thing. LEDs may or may not be drawn with the circle surrounding them.


e) Variable resistance: (Potentiometer)

Resistors are one of the most common electronic components. A resistor is a device that limits, or resists current. The current limiting ability or resistance is measured in ohms, represented by the Greek symbol Omega. Variable resistors (also called potentiometers or just "pots") are resistors that have a variable resistance. You adjust the resistance by turning a shaft. This shaft moves a wiper across the actual resistor element. By changing the amounts of resistor between the wiper connection and the connection (s) to the resistor element, you can change the resistance. You will often see the resistance of resistors written with K (kilohms) after the number value. This means that there are that many thousands of ohms. For example, 1K is 1000 ohm,2K is 2000 ohm, 3.3K is 3300 ohm, etc. You may also see the suffix M (mega ohms). This simply means million. Resistors are also rated by their power handling capability. This is the amount of heat the resistor can take before it is destroyed. The power capability is measured in W (watts) Common wattages for variable resistors are 1/8W, 1/4W, 1/2W and 1W. Anything of a higher wattage is referred to as a rheostat.

f) PCB (Printed Circuit Board)

with the help of P.C.B it is easy to assemble circuit with neat and clean end products. P.C.B is made of Bakelite with surface pasted with copper track-layout. For each components leg, hole is made.

All components pin are passed through the PCB hole and soldered back side.



When light falls on the LDR then its resistance decreases which results in increase of the voltage at pin 2 of the IC 555. IC 555 has got comparator inbuilt, which compares between the input voltage from pin2 and 1/3rd of the power supply voltage. When input falls below 1/3rd then output is set high otherwise it is set low. Since in brightness, input voltage rises so we obtain no positive voltage at output of pin 3 to drive relay or LED, besides in poor light condition we get output to energize.


a) Use a Sensitive LDR. You can test it using a multimeter.

b) I.C should not be heated too much while soldering, excess heat can destroy it. For safety and easy to replace, use of I.C base is suggested. While placing the I.C, pin number one should be made sure at right hole.

c) Opposite polarity of battery can destroy I.C so please check the polarity before switching ON the circuit. One should use diode in series with switch for safety since diode allows flowing current in one direction only.

d) L.E.D glows in forward bias only so incorrect polarity of L.E.D will not glow. Out put voltage of our project is 7.3 volt therefore 4 LED in series can be easily used without resistance. If you are using four white color LED in series then power required will be 12V insted of 9V supply or use 3 Pcs white LED in series because bias voltage of whote LED is greater than other color LED.

e) Each component should be soldered neat and clean. We should check for any dry soldered.

f) LDR should be so adjusted that it should not get light from streetlight itself.

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