Building research equipment with free, open-source hardware

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Scientists love open-source hardware

Contents

[edit] Building Research Equipment with Free, Open-Source Hardware

Open-source Lab

Pearce, Joshua M. 2012. “Building Research Equipment with Free, Open-Source Hardware.Science 337 (6100): 1303–1304.

  • DOI: 10.1126/science.1228183

[edit] Summary

Most experimental research projects are executed with a combination of purchased hardware equipment, which may be modified in the laboratory and custom single-built equipment fabricated inhouse. However, the computer software that helps design and execute experiments and analyze data has an additional source: It can also be free and open-source software (FOSS). FOSS has the advantage that the code is openly available for modification and is also often free of charge. In the past, customizing software has been much easier than custom-building equipment, which often can be quite costly because fabrication requires the skills of machinists, glassblowers, technicians, or outside suppliers. However, the open-source paradigm is now enabling creation of open-source scientific hardware by combining 3D printing with open-source microcontrollersW running on FOSS. These developments are illustrated below by several examples of equipment fabrication that can better meet particular specifications at substantially lower overall costs.

[edit] Share, and We All Grow Richer

Pearce, Joshua M. Share, and We All Grow Richer, The Analytical Scientist, Issue #0213, Article #301 (2013).

  • Free and open-source scientific hardware has the potential to liberate collective intelligence and cut costs

[edit] Examples

Open source scientific hardware is open source hardware used by scientists to do research or for education. This gallery and associated sub-pages are an extension of the book the Open Source Lab, which is about how to make scientific equipment following open source principles. Click on the hyperlinks under the images in this index to go to pages with hundreds of examples.


Open-source scientific hardware collections and resources
Arduino - a class of open source microcontrollers useful for automating equipment  
Raspberry Pi - credit-card sized computer running Linux  
Red Pitaya - open source measurement and control tool  
3D printable science equipment - 3D print your lab  
3D printable science equipment page 2 - more 3D prints for your lab  
Open Source Optics Library - and your optics lab  
Michigan Tech's Open Sustainability Technology Lab's efforts in open source hardware  
Open-source syringe pump - Parametric library of web-controlled open-source syringe pumps  
OpenLabTools - University of Cambridge initiative in open source hardware for science  
Tekla Lab - Berkley's initiative for a library of open source DIY quality scientific lab equipment.  
Sensorica - an Open Value Network providing sensing and automation solutions.  
Hackteria - webplatform and collection of Open Source Biological Art Projects  
Open Solar Outdoors Test Field - Solar photovoltaic testing  
Open Source Physiology Lab- 3D printing physiology equipment  
open ephys works on open-source electrophysiology  
Backyard Brains - neuroscience experiment kits for DIY electrophysiology  
Open-source scientific hardware by discipline

For more printable open-source scientific equipment see the Learning Category at Thingiverse or any of the subcategories including engineering, math, physics, and biology.

[edit] See also

[edit] In the News