My research project is to use wastewater in homes(water found in kitchens, sinks, baths, etc.) and use that water to convert it into energy that would go back inside the house it came from. This will be achieved by inserting a water turbine inside of a 4 inch diameter tube, the turbine will be connected to a generator that creates voltage for home usage. Before the wastewater passes through the turbine it would go through a sifter that would turn the solid masses in the water into tiny particles so the system does not get clogged. This innovation would be placed in the backyard where the wastewater from most homes usually lies before it goes back into the sewer, which is connected to the general plumbing of our homes. One of the main problems for today’s middle class is the the countless amount of bills they receive each month, their energy bill being one of the biggest burdens. My hope it to either reduce or eliminate the energy bill with this machine. Some of the wastewater that is in the sewers is converted into energy, but there are people who maintain these facilities and they have to make sure the system runs smoothly. My product would be different because it would be self manageable, so their would be no facility cost on your water bill.
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Step 1: Problem
As society becomes more reliant on technology to do everyday tasks in order to make their lives easier. However one thing that does not make life easier for the everyday person is their energy bill. With households increasing their energy output it is important to find new ways to create energy so that energy bills can go down, which is how I came up with the idea of my Sewage Turbine Energy Harvester.
Step 2: Parts List:
3 Water Turbines-3D Printed
USB / DC / Solar Lithium Ion/Polymer charger - v2
VERTER 5V USB Buck-Boost - 500mA from 3V-5V / 1000ma from 5V-12V
3 ¼ inch Dowels
4 inch diameter pipe
3 DC Motors
Acrylic tube base
Step 3: Instructions
- Gather All Materials
- Drill 3 holes equidistant from each other, on each side of the pipe Make the hole big enough that the dowel can pass through
- Once hole is made insert the turbines into the pipe and pass the dowel through it.
- Attach anchors on the ends of the pipe, this will allow for the metal rod to be placed onto the system
- Screw the metal rod onto the anchor
- Set the three DC Motors onto the metal rod Using the arch anchors, secure the DC Motors onto the metal rod
- Place one set of gears onto the dowel
- Place a second set of gears onto the DC Motor preferably with more teeth
- Make sure that the gears from the dowel to the DC Motor are touching each other and spin when in contact with each other.
- Gather 2 long wires and label them positive and negative
- Solder the positive wire onto the positive leads of the DC Motor and the Negative wire onto the negative leads of the DC Motor
- Place the arduino USB charging circuit onto the base
- Place the positive and negative wires into their respective spots of the circuit
Step 4: Results
As you can see from the video, when placed in water the turbine is able to spin. We did not perform this test with the electronics attached to the system in order to protect the electronics. We tried to demonstrate the spinning of the turbine with a fan, but the fan was not strong enough to push the turbines. If there was no concern about using water to test the prototype voltage would surely be present in the system proving that the prototype works toward its cause.
Step 5: Electronics
The circuit for the innovation uses the following 2 modules which can be found at Adafruit.com.
-USB / DC / Solar Lithium Ion/Polymer charger - v2
-VERTER 5V USB Buck-Boost - 500mA from 3V-5V / 1000ma from 5V-12V
-You must first assemble both the -USB / DC / Solar Lithium Ion/Polymer charger - v2 and the VERTER 5V USB Buck-Boost - 500mA from 3V-5V / 1000ma from 5V-12Vtogether circuits. Instructions can be found on adafriut.com. website.
-After assembly, connect both modules together: see pic above.
The mini meter which can be found on amazon will track your battery, this can be connected to the input terminal of the Boost module.
Step 6: Future Modifications
Future modifications include make the gear system more efficient. At the moment the gear system is smooth but not as smooth as it could be. By making the gear system more efficient it will allow for the system to generate more power which is the main purpose of my prototype. Another modification that will be looked at is how to protect the electronics so that the prototype can be tested underwater.By protecting the electronics it will allow for me to gather more solid data when testing the prototype. By doing this I could show that the system is actually generating power and that it is charging the battery that it is connected to.
Step 7: Supporting Documentation
Supporting Documentation: Research Poster, Video