more with Ferrofluid and Solar Energy
Using the MakerBot Unicorn PenPlotter as a guideline for a mechanism that uses a servo to laterally back and forth along a single axis, I made a mechanism that oscillates the proximity of a rare earth magnet back and forth in the proximity of ferrofluid. We are iterating through our collected data, to visualize and graph energy and weather data we are collecting over the month, in the planar layer of ferrofluid.
We hollowed out lightbulbs in order to cheaply make small terrariums for units that contain ferrofluid and a couple magnets, that will be perched atop solenoids and magnets.
I used a linear slide from a chain lock to keep the arm holding the magnet in place. The pieces are drying over night
The data logging is going well – although every now and then when I check the card, it didn’t read the data (I think I have to unplug the arduino each time. Oh, and in case I forget, it took me two days to realize that with the data logger and RTC to work, I need at least 8V from a wall wort (from the 5V one we were getting 0/0/0 for the date / time. (Also, I switched the code so we it is always writing to data.txt as opposed to a new file each time, so it will be much easier to graph (instead of copying and pasting from different text files, we can just use data.txt in processing).
We also thought that because the solenoid was working with 12V from the bench power supply, we would be able to use the 12V battery powered off the solar kit / charge controller at school – However, when we plugged in the solenoid to the 12 V battery…. turned out, it hardly worked. And the voltage reading was about 0.7… RIGHT….