I wanted to build a pair of earrings for my wife’s birthday. Since I am learning about FPGAs these days, I wanted to incorporate one into the design. Having gotten older and wiser, I decided to enlist help early on. I would focus on the overall design and the programming part, and leave the PCB design and assembly to my trusted friend and engineer Siva.
The objective: Build a pair of LED earrings using the Lattice iCE40UP5k FPGA. The earrings would have an 8 x 8 grid of LEDs, and would be powered by a CR2032 coin cell. My wife likes to wear big earrings, so using a CR2032 was not a problem. The earrings needed to balance nicely, so the battery had to be at the bottom. After considering many crazy shapes, I settled on basic geometry – three circles intersecting slightly.
The PCB was laid out in Altium Designer. They had to use a 4-layer design due to restrictions on size and the considerable number of lines that need to be routed.
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