Casiopea
Datos del proyecto
Datos del dispositivo

Cassiopeia es una computadora portátil y duradera capaz de operar completamente con energía solar y sin acceso a Internet. El diseño consta de un panel solar plegable Raspberry Pi 3b+ de 9 W, una batería recargable de iones de litio y un contenedor para alojarlo todo. El proyecto fue diseñado y construido en el semestre de primavera de 2022 por estudiantes de Cal Poly Humboldt inscritos en Ingeniería 215: Introducción al diseño. El equipo, Suns of Community, estaba formado por Zane Cook, Max Cunningham y Phil Tran. El diseño se inspiró en el deseo de brindar a las personas que viven fuera de la red y que no tienen acceso a Internet la oportunidad de acceder a vastos recursos de información para optimizar las posibilidades de supervivencia. Cassiopeia muestra toda la Wikipedia y los artículos relacionados con la supervivencia de Appropedia a través de su dispositivo móvil inteligente.

Background

La clase ENGR 215 de la primavera de 2022 en Cal Poly Humboldt ha asumido un proyecto de diseño en nombre de Appropedia. Este sitio web está dedicado a crear una plataforma en la que los usuarios puedan interactuar entre sí para ayudar a crear soluciones para la sostenibilidad, la reducción de la pobreza y el desarrollo internacional al brindarles a los usuarios la información para desarrollar tecnologías apropiadas. A nuestro equipo, Suns of Community, se le ha encomendado la tarea de construir una computadora portátil y duradera para el apocalipsis alimentada por radiación solar y utilizando elementos económicos y/o que se encuentran comúnmente. Emilio, el Director Ejecutivo de Appropedia, fue el cliente y brindó orientación para el desarrollo del diseño.

Problem statement

El objetivo de Soles de Comunidad es crear un ordenador portátil alojado en un contenedor duradero que sea capaz de funcionar durante varios años sin radiación solar y sin acceso a una red eléctrica ni a Internet. Cassiopeia proporcionará a los usuarios información valiosa de Wikipedia y Appropedia sobre estrategias de supervivencia y sistemas de ingeniería de bricolaje a través de sus dispositivos móviles que les permitirán vivir fuera de la red y sin una sociedad organizada durante largos períodos de tiempo.

Criteria

Los criterios de Apocalypse Computer y sus respectivos pesos se enumeran en la siguiente tabla. Los criterios son las categorías generales que guían el diseño del proyecto. Los Soles de Comunidad seleccionaron estos criterios para asegurar que este proyecto sea efectivo, útil y replicable.

CriteriosDescripciónPeso (1-10)
PortabilidadLigero y fácil de transportar.9
DurabilidadDuradero, resistente a impactos y resistente a la intemperie.8
reproducibilidadPuede ser construido por una sola persona con educación secundaria y acceso a computadora e internet.7
Facilidad de usoInterfaz fácil de navegar y acceder a la información.7
CostoMenos de $250.7
CapacidadesAlmacena y muestra información adecuada para el escenario de supervivencia en el dispositivo móvil del usuario.7

Prototyping

Se hicieron dos prototipos principales para mostrar dos casos de uso diferentes para nuestro proyecto, el primero es una versión robusta y el segundo es un diseño elegante.

La versión robusta tiene un volumen mucho mayor para llevar equipo de supervivencia adicional o equipo que puede ayudarlo en momentos de necesidad. Los componentes de esta versión están incrustados en el contenedor y no deben quitarse fácilmente. Este diseño está destinado a ser una bolsa / caja de errores en sí misma y ser una solución "todo en uno".

El diseño elegante es un diseño mucho más móvil y compacto. Aquí, no hay espacio de almacenamiento adicional para nada más que los componentes necesarios. Este diseño está diseñado para almacenarse en un lugar al que se pueda acceder fácilmente cuando sea necesario y almacenarse en una bolsa para insectos prefabricada.

Final product

For our final product we combined the most useful aspects of both prototypes. We used a larger container for extra gear to be stored alongside the computer, and we used Velcro to enable easy attachment and detachment of components.

The final product is a configuration consisting of a durable container, 9W solar panel, Raspberry Pi 3B+, 20,000mah power bank, and connection cables. Once the Raspberry Pi is powered via solar panel or power bank, the user will then connect to the wireless hotpot signal. Once the connection is made, the provided Kiwix link will allow the user to access all the stored information on the device.

Construction

The following pictures below describe the construction process of the Cassiopeia to include components and software needed.

Video instructions

The following video describes the step-by-step process on how to download and store information on a Raspberry Pi for off grid use.

How to install Kiwix Hotspot and download data

Step-by-step process on how to download and store information on a Raspberry pi for off-grid use.

Authors: Zane Cook
Date: 2022-05-03
Location: Arcata, California
Language: English (en)
License: CC-BY-SA-4.0

Bill of materials

Description of costs of materials used.

ItemAmountCost per unitTotal
Raspberry Pi 3B+ — CPU1USD 35.00USD 35.00
Solar Panel — 9W With two USB ports1USD 50.00USD 50.00
Power Bank — 20,000 mah Li-ion battery-pack1USD 20.00USD 20.00
SD card — Data and Code for Hotspot1USD 50.00USD 50.00
Voltage Regulator — For charging or Directly powering without charge controller1USD 5.00USD 5.00
Container — Housing components and protection from the elements1USD 20.00USD 20.00
Power Cable — For connecting Raspberry Pi and power-bank to solar panel1USD 5.00USD 5.00
Software — Kiwix free hotspot downloader instructions: https://www.kiwix.org/en/documentation/how-to-set-up-kiwix-hotspot/1USD 0.00USD 0.00
Grand totalUSD 185EUR 159,10 <br />GBP 135,05 <br />CAD 229,40 <br />MXN 3 857,25 <br />INR 13 847,25 <br />

Operation

The following video describes the step-by-step process of how to connect to the Kiwix hotspot.

Cassiopeia Operational Video

How to use the kiwix hotspot to access stored information for off grid use.

Date: 2022-05-03
Location: Arcata, California
Language: English (en)
License: CC-BY-SA-4.0

Maintenance

The Cassiopeia Solar Apocalypse Computers maintenance is minimum. The battery's best use practices avoid overcharging the power bank and letting it be stored with zero charge. The solar panel should be cleaned prior to use and the Raspberry Pi should be not stored in moist or dusty/sandy conditions. Any edits of the code will need a working computer.

Maintenance schedule

Daily
  • Clean solar panel of any dust before use.
  • Disconnect Raspberry Pi when not in use.
  • Bag in weather proof bag or container during wet, sandy or dusty conditions
Monthly
  • Charge power bank
Every 3-4 years
  • Replace the power bank
Every 7-10 years
  • Replace the Raspberry Pi[4]
  • Replace the SD card[5]
Every 25-30 years
  • Replace the solar panel[6]

Conclusion

Testing results

We found the test results all came back meeting our expectations of success. Our device is powered directly with a solar panel, or indirectly through a power bank. (The solar panel can also power the device and charge the power bank at the same time). When fully charged the power bank lasts 37 hours while the Raspberry Pi is running the hotspot. When powered the device creates an accessible hot spot which that displays the data quickly to the user's mobile device.

Discussion

Overall we are happy with how we have met the criteria, and addressed the problem. Our device is portable, durable and simple. It's simplicity allows the user to modify for any extra desired utility. The results indicate our design is successfully functional.

Lessons learned

As a way to decrease costs further, the user should opt for a simpler solar panel that does not have a USB port already built in. With this simpler panel, the user will need to connect a voltage regulator between the connection cable of the Raspberry Pi and the solar panel (prevents damage to the Raspberry Pi during sharp spikes in voltage or changes in load conditions).

When downloading the kiwix software and hotspot code, ensure there is at least 20 GB of available space on the computer's hard drive. Furthermore, using a Macintosh OS can prove to be problematic while downloading the software. We switched to using Windows to complete the downloads.

When downloading the offline reference libraries from Wikipedia, Appropedia, and whatever else the user decides, expect to download for several hours, depending on download speed. It took us over 10 hours to download everything with a very fast connection speed. During this download time, our computer transitioned to sleep mode and the download was halted. Prevent the computer from sleeping by playing media in the background.

Next steps

It is possible to get the device to not just be a hot spot for its own data but also facilitate access to a third party internet router (WIFI). The addition of this code could mean when ever the internet is accessible and the device is powered on, it can update data in Wikipedia, Appropedia, and the other references libraries that may be included.

The housing for storing the device could be more robust to environmental conditions. Water proofing can be improved by adding rubber gaskets between open seams within the container. Electro magnetic pulses can be stopped from interfering with the computer hardware by making a Faraday cage. This can be implemented by applying faraday tape to the inside of the container.[7] A cheaper version can be created by alternating layers of aluminum foil and thin plastic (three times) to the inside of the container.[8]

The design we went with allows for the option to store extra gear. This leaves it open to the user to optimize their design to fit their survival needs by adding different tools to their gear set.

Troubleshooting

The following table provides solutions to common problems related to the operation and construction of the apocalypse computer.

ProblemSuggestion
Hotspot link not openingTap on the designated Wi-Fi name, select 'Forget This Network' and restart the CPU.
Solar Panel not powering CPUMake sure it is plugged in, angle the panel towards direct sunlight and try to make connection.
Computer goes to sleep during long download timeUse download manager to backup data downloaded. Also, play media (movie) in background

to keep computer on.

Team

Suns of Community: Zane Cook, Phil Tran, Max Cunningham

Suns of Community, Spring 2022

  • Zane Cook
  • Max Cunningham
  • Phil Tran

References

Page data
Type Project, Device
Keywords apocalypse, computer, survival, offline, data, disaster, fallout, safety, emergency, engineering
Aliases People call me differently sometimes
Authors Zane Cook, Max Cunningham, Phil Tran
Published 2022
License CC-BY-SA-4.0
Affiliations Cal Poly Humboldt
Impact Number of views to this page and its redirects. Updated once a month. Views by admins and bots are not counted. Multiple views during the same session are counted as one.3,263
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