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Every year I have a theme in my bathroom for a large adult only halloween party. This year I plan to do an insane asylum. I have everything figured out but like the idea of creating a false power outage. I plan to have electrical sound effects sporadically start up with various other sound effects like insane people screaming and crazy laughter. I also have a motion detector that I can trigger to turn the power out when someone walks past the sensor which in turn will trigger an obnoxiously loud warning alarm (lasting only seconds...just for a good scare). What I am looking for is lighting that will look like an electrical surge before the power actually goes out. I considered a blue strobe light but it's not quite the right affect. Something that looks more like a quick bolt of lightning would be better. Can anyone help me with an idea? I am at a loss...
 

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If you're familiar with wiring 120Vac circuits, you could use a triac/opto circuit and vary the voltage via a microcontroller thereby simulating the dimming lights associated with brown/black outs. Bright white LED's could be used with same microcontroller as spot "arcing" lights.
 
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