Steve Rundell and fellow engineering students at Michigan State University never go thirsty, thanks to the ingenious automatic drink-making machine they designed and built. The contraption allows the "bartender" to select various drink mixtures displayed on an LCD screen. A controller sends a signal to a servo motor that drives a rotating carousel, which positions the drink cup under the appropriate liquid reservoirs. A solenoid valve opens, automatically dispensing a predetermined amount of liquid into the cup.
Drink-o-Matic 3000 Parts List
Allied Part #
Solid state relay
Additional parts required: dc servo motor, solenoid valve, desk lamp, lazy susan device, wire, 2-liter bottles for liquid reservoirs, various lumber and plumbing products (there's a lot of leeway for creativity in this design)
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During a teardown of the iPad Air and Microsoft Surface Pro 3 at the Medical Design & Manufacturing Show in Schaumburg, Ill., an engineer showed this "inflammatory" video about the dangers of maliciously mishandling lithium-ion batteries.
Science fiction author Isaac Asimov may have the best rules for effective brainstorming and creativity. His never-before-published essay, "On Creativity," recently made it to the Web pages of MIT Technology Review.
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In this new Design News feature, "How it Works," we’re starting off by examining the inner workings of the electronic cigarette. While e-cigarettes seemed like a gimmick just two or three years ago, they’re catching fire -- so to speak. Sales topped $1 billion last year and are set to hit $10 billion by 2017. Cigarette companies are fighting back by buying up e-cigarette manufacturers.
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