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Electroluminescent Cap Project. Milestone # 2-Project Proposal. Faculty Advisor/Reviewers: Dr. Michael Frank Dr. Bing Kwan Dr. Rajendra Arora. Team Members: Monica Pereira Monique Peregrina Liang Liufu Ifedayo Ogundana. Sponsored by: Albert Daci. Project Management.

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Electroluminescent Cap Project

Milestone # 2-Project Proposal

Faculty Advisor/Reviewers:

Dr. Michael Frank

Dr. Bing Kwan

Dr. RajendraArora

Team Members:Monica Pereira

Monique Peregrina

Liang Liufu


Sponsored by:

Albert Daci

the team their qualifications
The Team & their Qualifications

Monica PereiraProject ManagerArea of expertise: advanced circuit design, electronics, power analysis.

Monique Peregrina

Assistant Project Manager/Documentation CoordinatorArea of expertise: advanced circuit design, electronics, power analysis.

Liang LiufuTreasurerArea of expertise: advanced circuit design, electronics, computer architecture


Head of Research

Area of expertise: Microprocessors, Computer System Architecture, Digital Logics, and Digital Communications

Monica Pereira

introduction overview of the project
Introduction/Overview of the Project
  • The purpose of this project is to design an original cap that implements electroluminescent technology. This cap will consist of a panel with flashing capabilities and with a hidden internal circuit.
  • Currently, there are a few similar designs in the market that implement electroluminescent wires, panels and tapes. However, the current designs have a bulky circuit while others have their wires and/or switches exposed in the back.
  • The design proposed by this team, would implement small rechargeable batteries in order to reduce the size of the overall circuit and use small components in order to make the cap comfortable while providing a slim design.
  • Each cap will implement a switch with three states (turn on, flash, turn off) and be provided with an internal circuit with water resistant capabilities. In addition, the cap will come with a mini-USB charger hidden underneath the bill of the cap.

Monica Pereira

intended use users operating environment
Intended Use, Users & Operating Environment
  • USE: The cap is designed to be used for everyday activities. It will be required to resist exposure to dusty conditions as well as water, sweat and any other agents that may cause excessive dampness within the hat so that it can be worn while being outdoors or performing extraneous activities.
  • USERS: Any individual from almost any age range can use this product as long as he/she follows the guidelines stated in the user’s manual for handle and care.
  • OPERATING ENVIRONMENT: The prototype is required to operate under normal conditions since it is intended for regular use. The cap must resist light rain, sunlight exposure, plus any other factors that might follow during daily activities.

Monica Pereira

  • The approach followed for selection is based mostly on the size, weight, and ease of implementation of each part, since all of our components must fit within the cap.
design components
Design Components
  • Fitted baseball cap
  • LiPo rechargeable battery
  • Battery charger
  • 10cm x 10cm EL panel
  • 3V DC battery inverter
  • IC chip
  • Liquid Encapsulating epoxy resin
cap selection
Cap Selection


  • The selection of a cap was carefully done based on its design since this determines how much room (within the inside of this hat) can be used for storing components.
  • As requested by our sponsor, only fitted caps can be used.

Monica Pereira

option 1 fitted baseball cap
Option 1: Fitted baseball Cap

Benefits :

  • More comfortable for the consumer to wear
  • Has an easy and relaxed fitting


  • Its lower crown may reduce allowed space to conceal circuitry and
  • Its Curved bill makes it more difficult to attach the switch and the battery charger in the bottom of the bill.

Monica Pereira

option 2 fitted flat bill cap
Option 2: Fitted Flat-bill Cap


Has a high crown which allows more room to conceal the circuit without causing discomfort to the user.

Its flat bill allows better integration of a switch and mini-USB charger on the front of the hat.


Style may not attract certain users

Monica Pereira

battery selection
Battery Selection


  • Battery must power the circuit while remaining small and lightweight enough to not hinder the cap.


  • Several factors must be taken into consideration when choosing this component: weight, size, voltage output, capacity, chemical composition, and availability.

Liang Liufu

prt 00339 lithium polymer battery
PRT-00339 Lithium Polymer Battery


Dimensions: 0.23” x 1.32” x 1.86” (5.84x34x47mm)

Weight: 0.77oz (22g)

Nominal Capacity: 1000mAh

Nominal Voltage: 3.7V

Charge cut-off voltage: 4.20V

Standard discharge current 0.2 C

  • Max discharge Current: 2C
  • Discharge cut-off voltage: 2.75V
  • Cell Voltage: 3.7-3.9V
  • Impedance: <300 Ohms

Liang Liufu

prt 00339 battery
PRT-00339 Battery


Small and lightweight allows for good implementation into cap

Rectangular size allows for easy mounting onto cap without need for battery housing

Rechargeable: eliminates the need to buy more batteries, saving money for the consumer

Higher capacity allows for longer use per charge

Low discharge rate allows for longer storage times before depletion (0.1% per month)

Very Stable: No explosion or fire when over charged, over discharged, short circuited, extrusion, and thermal shock.

Durable: vibration, collision, and dropping it does not affect performance.


Requires a charger and not easily replaced.

Slightly larger size might present slight problem in order to fit inside the cap.

Extra charger creates an additional component that needs to be added onto the hat

Liang Liufu

li poly charger
Li-Poly Charger
  • Four voltage regulation options: 4.2v, 4.35v, 4.4v, 4.5v
  • Programmable charge current: 15mA to 500mA
  • Selectable Preconditioning: 10%, 20%, 40%, or disable
  • Automatic Power Down


Regulated output voltage: 4.20V

Precondition current ratio: 10

Precondition voltage threshold ratio: 66.5

Charge termination current ratio: 7.5

Recharge voltage threshold ratio: 96.5

Temperature range: -40C to +85C

Dimensions: 29.4mm x 10.8mm

Liang Liufu


Li-Poly Charger


Much smaller board allows for easier integration into cap

Micro USB port is fairly common and can be easily recharged

Automatic power down prevents over charging


Exposed chip: requires an extra step to encase the chip

Extra component that must be concealed within the cap

Liang Liufu


Li-Poly charger for 3.7v cells, JST 2.0mm model USB-uLIPO

  • Specifications:
  • Regulated output voltage: 4.20V Precondition current ratio: 10
  • Precondition voltage threshold ratio: 66.5
  • Charge termination current ratio: 7.5
  • Recharge voltage threshold ratio: 96.5
  • Temperature range: -40 – 85C
  • Dimensions: 29.4mm x 10.8mm
  • Li-Poly charger, 3.7v mini-USB JST
  • Specifications:
  • 5V input via mini-B USB connector
  • 0.1” breakouts for battery, DC IN, and status LED
  • 3.7V output to battery
  • Supports 10k NTC Thermistor which has been filled by a 10k resistor
  • 0.2oz (5.7g)
  • Adjustable current by soldering a resistor
  • Dimensions: 1.3” x 1.4” x 0.3” (33 x 35 x 7mm)

Other Possible Chargers

Liang Liufu

el panel
EL Panel


Glow size: 10cm X 10cm (3.95" x 3.95")

Plastic Size: 10.4 cm x 10.4 cm (4.1" x 4.1"), about 0.5mm thick

Panel lifetime: >25000 hours

Operating voltage: 60-250VAC

Operating Frequency: 50-5000HZ

Current Draw: 0.14mA/cm2 (max) @ 110V / 400Hz

Initial Brightness: 75 cd/m2

Operating Temperature: -50ᵒ C / 65ᵒ C

45 nF per panel

Liang Liufu


EL Panels


Ultra-thin material allows easy concealment within the cap

Flexibility allows panels to be stitched to the shape of the cap

High efficiency allows for maximum life of batteries

Low temperature makes it cool to the touch

Can be easily cut to the desired shape

Vibration and shock resistant allows it to withstand common wear

Can continue to operate even if punctured


Cannot be folded: it cannot withstand being folded like a sheet of paper

Uses more power than EL wires

The connection is not waterproof (it is only heat shrink)

Liang Liufu

other el material choices
Other EL material choices
  • EL Wire
  • Input voltage: 40-110VAC
  • Input frequency: 400-3000Hz
  • Electrical Current: <150mA
  • Twisting Angle: 30 degrees per meter
  • Bending Diameter: >10mm
  • Stretching Force: <1.5kg
  • Operating temperature: -10C – 60C
  • Operating humidity: <60%
  • Lifetime: 3000-6000 hours
  • Storage temperature: 5C – 35C
  • Storage humidity: <30%
  • EL Tape
  • Size: 100 cm x 1.5 cm about 1mm thick. The glowing part is 1cm wide.
  • Panel lifetime: >25000 hours
  • Operating voltage: 60-250VAC
  • Operating Frequency: 50-5000HZ
  • Current Draw: 0.14mA/cm2 (max) @ 110V / 400Hz
  • Initial Brightness: 85 cd/m2
  • Operating Temperature: -50 C / 65 C
  • ~10 nF per meter

Liang Liufu

battery inverter selection
Battery Inverter Selection


  • Select a battery inverter that can provide the necessary amount of AC voltage and current to the EL panel


  • The first goal is to find an inverter that is small in size. The inverter, as with everything else, must fit easily within the confines of the cap.
  • The second goal is to find an inverter that can convert the voltage from the battery to 110V AC voltage to power the EL panel.


3 v eli imc battery inverter
3 V ELI-IMC Battery Inverter


External 3V or 1,5V (+/- 20%) power supply (or battery) needed

Total EL fiberlength 0m-0.5m (0"-20")

Frequency: 2500 Hz

Size: 13 mm diameter x 10 mm height (0.5" diameter x 0.4" height)

Weight: 2.2 g


3 v eli imc battery inverter1
3 V ELI-IMC Battery Inverter


Very small size and light weight

Can be used with battery and external power supply

Suitable for use with both EL wires and panels


Low hum noise is produced during operation

No on/blink /off switch incorporated

Capable of lighting only a small length/area.



Timing IC Selection


  • Select a 555 Timer IC to control the blinking of the logo.
  • The IC is required to set a frequency which will allow the EL panel to blink.


  • Size will be taken into consideration.
  • Minimal cost if also preferred

Monique Peregrina

timing ic selection
Timing IC Selection

Monique Peregrina

model lm555 timer ic intersil
Model LM555 timer IC (Intersil)


Type: 555 type, Timer/Oscillator (Single)

Supply Voltage: 2 V ~ 18 V

Current: 60µA

Operating Temperature: 0ºC to 70ºC

Package/Case: 8-SOIC (0.154”, 3.90mm width)

Frequency: 1MHz

Monique Peregrina

model lm555 timer ic intersil1
Model LM555 timer IC (Intersil)


Does not present a minimum unit order to be purchased


Unit price is higher than other brands presented (for a single unit price is $0.78, for orders greater than 100 units the price drops to $0.38)

Monique Peregrina

waterproofing insulating component selection
Waterproofing/Insulating component Selection


  • Select the best waterproofing and insulating material to encase the circuit within the hat.


  • The first goal is that the material must be able to cover the entire circuit and remain water resistant even under normal wear and tear.
  • The second goal is that it must be dielectric because it will prevent any electric current from escaping the circuit which could ultimately cause harm to the consumer.

Monique Peregrina

liquid encapsulating epoxy resin


Color: black

Pot life: 60 minutes

Cure cycle: 24 hours at room temperature

Viscosity: 11500 cps @ 20ºC

Dielectric strength: 19.36 kV/mm

Operating temperature range: -60ºC to 140ºC

Liquid Encapsulating Epoxy Resin

Monique Peregrina


Liquid Encapsulating Epoxy Resin


Excellent electrical insulation properties

Good storage stability

Supports high temperatures

Mechanical and impact resistance properties


If exposed to great stress, the plastic may break

It may shrink when it dries, stressing components in the circuitry

Monique Peregrina

internal circuit
Internal Circuit
  • To design the circuit itself, the battery will be connected to both the charger as well as the switch.
  • Switch will be connected to the inverter for ON state and also to the control circuit for BLINK state
  • The inverter will then be connected to the panel.
  • The entire circuit will be waterproofed and insulated

Monique Peregrina

front view of cap
Front View of Cap

The logo will not exceed the dimensions of 3 inches by 3 inches.

The logo will be cut out of the EL panel and stitched into the fabric.

Monique Peregrina

internal view of cap
Internal View of Cap

The switch will be located on the bill of the cap. It will be connected to the inverter and the timing IC.

The timing IC and inverter will be on the same PCB. The front of the cap will provide the most space to conceal the two components.

The battery charger will be placed on the front underside of the bill. It allows ease of access for the user to plug in the micro-USB connector.

The battery component will be placed within the sweat band of the cap and concealed within the layer of fabric.

Monique Peregrina

benefits of the proposed design
Benefits of the Proposed Design
  • Comfort: circuit is small and unobtrusive to the user.
  • Ease of use: only one button and a recharger at the bill of the cap will be visible allowing for simple use by consumer.
  • Compact: by including as many components as possible into one small circuit design, space is saved.
  • Unit cost: the individual cap will be relatively cheap to manufacture
  • Waterproofness:with full coverage of the circuit in waterproof material, the risk of water damage will be minimal.
  • Insulation:the waterproofing material is also a dielectric, which will insulate the user from the circuit.

Monique Peregrina

  • Durability: even though the circuit is designed to withstand light wear and tear due to common use, it is not designed to withstand rough use or extreme weather condition.
  • Not machine washable

Monique Peregrina


Uncertainties at Project Milestones

      • Required tool kit, components and materials to be used
      • Features and required capabilities to be incorporated
      • Incomplete knowledge and technical know-how of the technology
      • Costs at project milestones
  • Method and formulation challenges
      • Construction and Fabrication
      • Design Specifications
      • Imagination and Rationality
      • Technical feasibility


risk assessment cont
Risk Assessment (Cont.)
  • Human Managerial factor
  • Physical loss and damage
  • Circuitry components malfunctioning


gantt chart
Gantt Chart

Monica Pereira

gantt chart cont
Gantt Chart(Cont.)

Monica Pereira


Budget Justification

The budget is made such that the following is assumed:

  • $30/hr base salary considering 12hours of work per week (both semesters)
  • Equal base salary for individuals working on this project
  • Addition of 29% of the personnel subtotal for fringe benefits
  • 45% of the total direct costs was added to account for the overhead costs
  • Expenses for the assembly of the internal circuit is included in extra costs

Liang Liufu