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Author Topic: Looking for suggestions  (Read 8067 times)


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Looking for suggestions
« on: November 19, 2010, 08:30:26 AM »
Hello all! My name is Aaron. I'm new to the forums. I have read fairly extensively throughout these forums looking for answers and learning all that I can.

Currently, I am an Engineering Student. I've been working towards a degree in ChemE.

Anyway, the reason I'm here, and the reason I am posting, is because I'm working on a project for one of my engineering classes. To sum it up, I am creating an earth battery which, in theory, will power a small electric motor.

The motor is a 1.5-3.0v and its current draw is unknown. I was trying to test it today but the fuse in the DVOM was blown. The resistance is really hard to obtain, as it bounces all over the place. I'm thinking it's bouncing all over because it's an electric motor... Although, truly, I have no idea. Turning the motor however, there are certain area's where I can get a steady reading which holds at ~5ohms.

Thus, at 3.0v I calculate that 0.6amps will be needed to drive the motor, and at 1.5v I get 0.3amps.

The design of the earth battery is as follows:

*16 ice cube trays (each cube holder I will create a voltaic cell).

*Each tray has 14 cube holders, thus there are going to be 224 cells.

*Each cell produces ~1.15v and ~.6mA   (These figures were pulled using straight vinegar, which I saturated the dirt with; however, I'm actually going to use something more acidic, covered in the next bullet).

*I am using a mixture of pixy stix's (citric acid) as well as lemon juice as the solution that will be added to the cells in order to (hopefully) increase the output of each cell. The pH of the cells are ~1.8
-----So in theory, I'm sort of creating a Cu-Zn voltaic cell/lemon battery.

*I am using Copper metal and Zinc washers, which I was planning on running in parallel, hoping to gain enough current to turn the motor. However, if my calculations are right, I'm only going to be able to produce ~134.4mA; I'm fairly certain that I need a minimum of 200mAh to turn the motor (I gather this amperage amount because the motor came from a system which requires 2 AAA batteries). However, I'd like to try to get closer to 400mAh if possible.

My question(s) are:
Is there anyone out here in the forum that have any suggestions on how to increase the output of my earth battery system?

I was thinking of making a JT and placing a few 10 farad super-capacitors in parallel with the 1k resistor, as Jeanna and Bill have discussed in the JT 101 thread and other like postings which I have had the pleasure of reading. Or maybe a Fuji Circuit, if I can figure out how exactly to make one. Do you think the JT will help me to accomplish my goal? Should I attempt to create a secondary for the JT?

If the JT sounds like a good idea, would I be correct in assuming that the motor would replace the LED?

Sorry for all the questions, I really have tried to research as much as possible, but unfortunately I'm not very savvy in electricity... not yet at least.

Well, I appreciate your time, and I'll be on this end with my fingers crossed as I eagerly await replies.


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Re: Looking for suggestions
« Reply #1 on: November 19, 2010, 10:45:54 AM »


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Re: Looking for suggestions
« Reply #2 on: November 23, 2010, 05:20:44 AM »
add this to your experiment:

Definitely an interesting read, thank you. Unfortunately, I'm sure if I can do this. I'm not extremely savy with electronics. Although, I will definitely check it out and see what I can do. Thanks for the reply!