Project three is well underway, and in theory our design is solid. The assignment was to design a heliotropic field that follows the movement of the sun, which would be beneficial for energy collection for example. Using Digital Project (awesome!), we will create a simulation of the working field in motion, and using our arduino kits and electronic knowledge we will construct a few prototype cells.
Our design may be pushing a little past the requirements of the assignment, which I think is a good thing. We have decided to use mirrors to reflect solar light to a solar cell (perhaps, this is still in the works a bit) in order to concentrate the power. Each cell in our field consists of three mirrors in a row that can angle on one axis and are mounted on a rectangular box platform. This platform in turn rotates on the horizontal over top a stationary cylindrical box on the bottom. When the field moves in unison, the rotating rectangles create changing shapes and patterns throughout the day for visual appeal.
So far, the code has been written and we will be laser cutting the structure out of foamcore today (black for added chic-ness). Since we have detailed drawings already, assembly should be a breeze. All that remains to be worked out is the Digital Project simulation (fun stuff! if you ask me), and troubleshooting of course, which could make or break us.
Pictures of work in progress and the finished model to come. Aren’t you excited?