Archive for April, 2010

Time delay door alarm

Saturday, April 3rd, 2010

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Have you ever accidentally left your front door ajar and had a pet escape? BlackCow at Homebrew Tech came up with a simple solution to this problem. The circuit is fairly rudimentary but a great example of using the basics to get the job done. Now, instead of having an alarm that sounds as soon as the door is open, he has a 30 second delay. This helps avoid the “boy who cried wolf” effect also known as the “vista security warning” effect of being bothered too many times for a non issue.  We also have to say that we like his taste in blog layouts.

Courtesy of Homebrew Tech via Hacked Gadgets

Tiny supercharger is like 10 wind turbines in one

Friday, April 2nd, 2010

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It’s tough work to find a small scale wind energy charger that works. While we’ve seeninnovative designs pop up over the last few years, it’s simply difficult to get enough wind coming through such a little device to charge devices. However, thanks to a company called Humdinger Wind Energy LLC, that might change with their new device called the microBelt. It is a piezoelectric turbine-based system that is purportedly 10 times more effective at gathering energy than other systems of the same size.

Humdinger is a start-up of of just 6 people, and they’ve developed a new method of gathering wind energy on a small scale. The system uses aeroelastic flutter and vibration of a membrane – rather than a spinning turbine – is at the core of the Microbelt, which is intended to replace the batteries used in wireless sensor networks (WSN). It can be used in applications such as HVAC systems, using the airflow to power the device and therefore skipping the need for more expensive batteries. And because the system doesn’t mess with spinning turbines that can break more easily, it expects a long lifespan – as much as 20 years.

It’s inexpensive as well as efficient. Ecofriend writes “Power is produced in air flows from as little as 3 m/s. At 5.5 m/s of wind flow the power output is 2mW. Apart from efficiency, another advantage of the system is that it is cheap to produce, as the materials are very simple. Humdinger is progressing applications such as building monitoring and transit monitoring that will rely on such wind turbines.”

Courtesy: TreehuggerEcofriend