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Thread: School Project

  1. #1
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    Default School Project

    Hey guys, I'm currently in the ID program at Georgia Tech and we're doing a project on harvesting and using electricity that is gained from bodily movement during athletic activity. We've narrowed our options down to power coming from canoeing/kayaking.

    My question to you is this: If you were to have access to the power you generated over the course of a day of paddling, what would you like to use the power for? We've come up with some simple ideas such as lighting, water purification, charging iPods, GPS, etc. but now we're looking for some ideas from people with actual experience on canoeing/camping trips. Anything you guys could add to our list would be appreciated.

    Thanks in advance.

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    I would focus on simple battery recharging. This would allow for the user to choose what they apply that benefit to. If you focus on a specific tool, then it limits the number of people who could take advantage of the benefit. Batteries, specifically AA or AAA, can be used for just about anything you mentioned. An opportunity to charge batteries to be used for headlamps/flashlights or for radios/phones to be used for safety would be my personal priorities.

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    Member cdubbin's Avatar
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    Something that rubs your back! Seriously, the only thing electrical that I carry in the backcountry is a headlamp. On canoe trips weight and bulk are huge issues, and anything that would add to that I doubt would be embraced by many. There are already solar chargers on the market that can charge a cell/GPS/etc. over the course of a day. Honestly, I can't think of anything.
    " Gas boats are bad enough, autos are an invention of the devil, and airplanes are worse." ~Allen Hasselborg

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    Member mainer_in_ak's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by blake0387 View Post
    Hey guys, I'm currently in the ID program at Georgia Tech and we're doing a project on harvesting and using electricity that is gained from bodily movement during athletic activity. We've narrowed our options down to power coming from canoeing/kayaking.

    My question to you is this: If you were to have access to the power you generated over the course of a day of paddling, what would you like to use the power for? We've come up with some simple ideas such as lighting, water purification, charging iPods, GPS, etc. but now we're looking for some ideas from people with actual experience on canoeing/camping trips. Anything you guys could add to our list would be appreciated.

    Thanks in advance.
    Some double A batteries are really all you need for electrical "power". Light is usually provided by a battery or butane canister powered lantern. Water purification is performed via an MSR sweet water or similiar water purifier. ipods arent needed, and GPS's last a very long time on one set of batteries when you use it conservatively and not continuously.

  5. #5
    Moderator Alaskacanoe's Avatar
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    Harvesting power by paddling a canoe, hiking Etc.
    you may want to get a perspective from someone that has been out on very long extended trips.
    Buck Nelson has done some of those trips where he hiked and paddled for weeks on end.
    Here is a link to get in touch with him. I would imagine he thought about such things alot
    http://www.bucktrack.com/Alaska_Broo..._Traverse.html
    I had a watch over 40 years ago that wound itself by just wearing it and movement normal in everyday life.
    My guess is that you are wanting to gather energy to be stored for later use in batteries.
    so as suggested here by others.., .. something to charge double AA batteries would be something of use for sure..
    Max
    When you come to a fork in the trail, take it!

    Rentals for Canoes, Kayaks, Rafts, boats serving the Kenai canoe trail system and the Kenai river for over 15 years. www.alaskacanoetrips.com

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    Member Sierra Dragon's Avatar
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    Mechanical engineer here. I played with similar concept for my senior year project in college but I was playing with equipment vibrations to power sensor equipment. Good luck

    One comment from my experience is that I wouldn't depend on any charging device for a safety item. (flashlight, GPS, Radio etc.) those items are just too important and the consequence of failure is to great to rely on a mechanical device that too easily can fail.

    so whatever you power it will be a gadget item not safety item...

    I would probably go with the battery charger, keep it simple and light weight. and offer as much versatility as you can. the water purifier is a good idea as water is heavy and it would be nice to be able to not have to carry water, and you cans still take lightweight purification tablets as backup.

    Also with Kayaking I'm not so sure I'd want anything scavenging power off my paddle stoke, Kayaking is pretty intense as it is... Canoe? maybe.

    I'll echo the battery idea is probably best. Your biggest challenge is going to be making it waterproof. I'd look into using capacitors (like the old watch mentioned) rather than batteries... lighter and more efficient... (maybe)

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    Member garnede's Avatar
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    If you look at rowing a raft, then there might be a market for charging batteries for the portable electric fences to protect the boat. Ask over in the rafting forum too.
    It ain't about the # of pounds of meat we bring back, nor about how much we spent to go do it. Its about seeing what no one else sees.

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    Member ret25yo's Avatar
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    beer cooling station././

    If you cant stand behind the troops in Iraq.. Feel free to stand in front of them.

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