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Magnetic Pendulum
From the MAKE Flickr photo pool

Flickr member Pocket-sized breadboarded a solar/magnetic pendulum as seen in the BEAM book – JunkBots, Bugbots, and Bots on Wheels
The self-sufficiency of solar power can really up the fun-factor in these builds – Magnetic Pendulum on Flickr

This site explains the project a bit more, and highlighting it’s strengths:

  • Back EMF powers the led

  • slight vibrations allow the system to self start
  • solar powered means years of joy with no support needed (this is my favorite part of beam art – it’s allows there for you)
  • self timing
    • the magnet induces a slight current into the coil

    • this extra current coupled with the energy stored in the capacitors trips the power dump
    • the power dumped into the coil causes the magnet and coil to be attracted to each other
    • there is only 1 degree of freedom in the system so it starts to swing predictably
    • the orientation of the magnetic field pulls the pendulum towards dead center on the way in
    • this same field pushes the pendulum away from the coil once it passes dead center

- Solar Pendulum

From the pages of MAKE:
Intro To Beambots
MAKE:06 p.54 – A Beginner’s guide to BEAM – Subscribers, read this article now in the digital edition.

Collin Cunningham

Born, drew a lot, made video, made music on 4-track, then computer, more songwriting, met future wife, went to art school for video major, made websites, toured in a band, worked as web media tech, discovered electronics, taught myself electronics, blogged about DIY electronics, made web videos about electronics and made music for them … and I still do!


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