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View Full Version : I want one, but why? Heatit



scooterscot
28th August 2014, 12:43
Applications, applications, my head is dizzy thinking of the possibilities.

https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/1257609237/heatit?ref=discovery



Heatit

You can use Heatit to develop projects and fabricate prototypes that require high current or heat to be activated – such as nitinol, resistive heating, thermochromic inks, solenoids, stepper motors and more.

enlarged photo of Heatit
enlarged photo of Heatit
The activation of certain materials requires higher power than typical prototyping boards can provide. Heatit supports the necessary power handling with onboard transistors and current regulating circuits; Heatit is aware of the exact current output. The small size and modularity of Heatit boards allow easy integration within a wide range of static, mobile and wearable applications.

The heart of Heatit is an Atmega32U4 microcontroller, it is based on the Arduino IDE and very easy to use with the Heatit Library. To activate a Heatit pin, simply use: heatit.set(pin, mA);.

With the design and aesthetics of Heatit we inspire creative minds to develop their prototypes one step further, to potential products. The small size and shape of heatit helps to embed the board into the creator’s medium. We encourage the integration of the open-source 2/3D Heatit models both functionally and aesthetically into the digital fabrication process such as laser-cutters, 3D printers and CNC machines.


Currently Heatit is in testing stages. We need your support to build a useful online resource on Heatit, to manufacture the boards and to make it available for you - and for everyone!

Specification

- 8 Heatit pinout, upto 500mA each; total 2A.
- 4x 5V analog IO (can be configured to digital)
- 2x 5V digital IO, RX - TX
- onboard SPI communication to connect several Heatit boards
- miniUSB connector, for programming
- 9-12V DC power jack, mini connector
- Arduino IDE

What you can do with Heatit

- easily activate muscle wires - without overheating them
- drive solenoids
- drive stepper motors
- use it for resistive heating, to build warm plates, incubators. By connecting a temperature sensor for feedback, you can have an exact temperature control over the surface / area. Perfect for keeping your plants / eggs / bacteria warm / hot. It is also suited for activating thermochromatic pigments, to make flexible, organic displays and a variety of wearable projects.

What is the stage of Heatit and where your money goes

We've developed functioning prototypes of the hardware platform and the Heatit library. We are now testing and fine tuning the boards. Your contribution will help us funding the initial manufacturing costs. We will produce the boards in New Jersey. Our aim is to send the final design out for fabrication latest early winter 2012. In the meantime we are working on extending the Heatit library by implementing extra functionality. We are developing a community website, under the name Heatit (http://www.heatit.cc), where we publish tutorials and example applications to help you getting started and to showcase inspirational projects. We will also publish the open-source hardware design and the 2D / 3D models on our website.

If we meet our funding goal, we plan to deliver the first batch of Heatit and have the software beta ready in the first months of 2013. We aim to ship the scarves before the cold winter enters.

Heatit Resistor scarf
Heatit Resistor scarf
Our Story

All it begin in a cold January day in Estonia, in 2009.
Kärt and I (Eszter) started working together on developing e-textiles under the name SymbiosisO: materials with embedded electronics in order to give an extra functionality, behavior to these soft objects. Our main focus was on heat sensitive materials, such as thermochromic pigments and muscle wires.
Arduino was just getting popular back then; we started using the platform, though we had to modify it to our own needs.

First, we had to solve the power handling issue - we needed much more current than Arduino could output. We attached transistors to our handmade boards.

Secondly, we needed to reduce the form factor of the boards so we could integrate it into our projects. From the beginning we believed in a modularity and distributed electronics layout - so we can use the boards for both small and large scale installations.

modularity; first prototype
modularity; first prototype
SymbiosisO
SymbiosisO
We have developed numerous installations (under the name SymbiosisO) and through the iterations we started to understand the requirements of such, high current systems. One of the key challenges was to optimize our power consumptions, therefore we had to be aware of our exact current output. More sophisticated systems, such as muscle wires, operate within a small interval or applied current. It was clear a simple transistor shield does not meet our requirements.

Our project outcome is always relies on simple, clear interaction.During my ITP years I realized the most physical computing projects only uses few inputs and more outputs. Exception is the first time one tries electronics platform and attaches flex sensors, buttons, different meters and wild actuation mechanisms to utilize all the available IO-s. The reduced inputs and maximized outputs was especially true in soft electronics and wearables.

behind the scenes: installing SymbiosisO: Voxel (Sue, Yoni, Alex and I)
behind the scenes: installing SymbiosisO: Voxel (Sue, Yoni, Alex and I)
SymbiosisO: Voxel
SymbiosisO: Voxel
We have been frequently asked how we operate our installations, and we saw an demand towards these boards.

We decided to perfect and open up or design and make it available to everyone. Bence, Sly, Sue, Paola and Alex joined the team as well - giving their knowledge and expertise in hardware design, interaction design, computer science, soft electronics and education, to develop a board that is both functional and well designed.

Heatit
Heatit
So here we are, presenting Heatit and asking your support to make it available to everyone.

Thank you,
Eszter Ozsvald
co-founder of Heatit

Video Music composed and performed by Nick Yulman using his mechanical instruments. More info at nysoundworks.org

Risks and challenges Learn about accountability on Kickstarter

The biggest challenge with Heatit was producing a well designed specification and a functional prototype. We have a proven concept, that went through three iterations and we are currently finalizing the board design. The final product may slightly differ in size (may be smaller) and performance (may be faster). The Heatit library is developed along with the boards.

The boards are pre-examined and verified with hardware specialist at a NJ based manufacturing company, where we decided to produce the boards. Our funding goals cover a minimal batch that enables us to set up a production line.

We plan to finish the production of Heatit in 2012; we left enough time until the release to solve any unexpected problems. If needed, our talented team with diverse set of skills will do a great job in problem solving.

DiscoStu
28th August 2014, 13:10
I saw HeatIt and I was hoping for a crazy alternative to a plasma cutter.

DodgyAgent
28th August 2014, 13:37
They have made it sound very complicated full of jargon and long words. Anyone who has any money who is not an engineer will be lost by it.

Fandango
28th August 2014, 13:38
I read that and still don't understand its purpose?!?

scooterscot
28th August 2014, 13:48
I read that and still don't understand its purpose?!?

Basically, it's about as sexy as power transistors will ever look.

DodgyAgent
28th August 2014, 13:54
Basically, it's about as sexy as power transistors will ever look.

What is a power transistor? :emb

Halo Jones
28th August 2014, 16:26
What is a power transistor? :emb

Ditto...

scooterscot
28th August 2014, 16:41
It's a switch for a switch. And being silicon you also have no physical movement. But the principle remains.

A switch be something that transitions from one state to another. From the 'off state' to the 'on state'. Then the current flows. But what if you want to transition much more current?

Difficult to explain now that I try. I know...

It's like this, you and your merry men want to cross a river. So one man makes the jump with a rope. Safely across the other side the rope is used to pull a rope bridge across the river allowing the merry men to cross. That's a power transistor!

d000hg
28th August 2014, 19:09
Similar sort of principle to how you use a small current to control a much bigger current in a classic single-transistor amplifier?

Is this power-transistor not something that already exists then?

scooterscot
28th August 2014, 19:31
Similar sort of principle to how you use a small current to control a much bigger current in a classic single-transistor amplifier?

Is this power-transistor not something that already exists then?

Yes they exist everywhere from train doors to anything that might need a slightly larger current. Goodness modern electronics has come on leaps and bounds since my undergrad years. A circuit board mounted power transistor that could handle currents / voltages of the load of a washing machine did not exist in my day. Is it a clunky big old relay. In fact I'm sure some of us here have a TV when you press the standby button on the remote you hear a !click!, that's the relay switching over 240v to the transformer. Today it's a power-transistor.

It seems to me only thing different on this project is the accessibility. And that's a great thing to get more people involved. The applications would be endless thinking about it. Muscle wires for example, they require more than normal current. But with a package this small you're replacing clunky relays that would normally do the job. So you're at a place to scale down products, I could imagine those electronics woven into fabrics for example.

Electronic engineering is exciting.

scooterscot
28th August 2014, 19:35
Similar sort of principle to how you use a small current to control a much bigger current in a classic single-transistor amplifier?

I should say, yes. But not solid state. The output is far from clean / noisy.

stek
28th August 2014, 19:39
It's a relay then.

scooterscot
28th August 2014, 19:48
It's a relay then.

There's no magnetic fields in a power-transistor.

SueEllen
28th August 2014, 19:50
Just like to tell you Scooterscot I hate you.

I'm now looking at kickstarter :mad

scooterscot
28th August 2014, 19:51
Just like to tell you Scooterscot I hate you.

I'm now looking at kickstarter :mad

heh heh

Got totally suckered in last night for an hour or so.

SueEllen
28th August 2014, 19:54
heh heh

Got totally suckered in last night for an hour or so.

This (https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/edgetechlabs/drinkmate-the-breathalyzer-that-fits-your-lifestyl?ref=category_popular) is oddly popular

scooterscot
28th August 2014, 19:55
This (ttps://www.kickstarter.com/projects/edgetechlabs/drinkmate-the-breathalyzer-that-fits-your-lifestyl?ref=category_popular) is oddly popular

broken link.

scooterscot
28th August 2014, 19:56
An neither does it have to be incredible or expensive. Check out this awesome multifunction simplistic eggcup.

https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/334756388/rocket-lifting-up-your-breakfast?ref=nav_search

BrilloPad
28th August 2014, 20:02
Where is Zeity to explain what this means?

d000hg
29th August 2014, 09:52
Electronic engineering is exciting.I didn't even realise it was a field which was still moving foward these days, with everything being so computer-based.

scooterscot
29th August 2014, 10:50
I didn't even realise it was a field which was still moving foward these days, with everything being so computer-based.

Perhaps there's something in that statement as to why engineering in the UK has taken a step backwards. It's a real shame.

Stuff I did not hear of 15 year ago:

curved displays, biometric sensors the size of needle, blue / white LEDS, diodes / transistor that can handle current and voltage you'd expect from a clunky RCD (residual current device you have them in the fusebox), in hospitals you now have MRI units than can polarise specific molecules and even radiotherapy that can target individual cells instead of a 'rough area'.

Exciting times in for electronic engineering. I suspect in the not to distant future most folks will have biometric sensors on them in one form or another and be able to monitor the levels of various elements in their body.