And Then There were Waves: A Novel Approach to Creating a Hydroelectric Device Utilizing a

Friday, 13 February 2015
Exhibit Hall (San Jose Convention Center)
Renita Alexander, Plano ISD, Plano, TX
The experiment attempts to produce clean alternative energy through a novel hydroelectric generator. To test this experiment a hydroelectric generator was created by the experimenter. This device was more advanced and efficient than that of the previous year’s design. The variables used in the experiment were the type of structure applicability of the device and the generator. This year’s device employs a pendulum and buoy system. The pendulum was a free swinging PVC pipe hanging vertically at the top of the device. As the waves rolled and the wind blew, the pendulum responded by swinging from side to side. This meant the device was able to harness energy through both wave and wind energy. This greatly added to the generator’s efficiency. The movement of the pendulum was converted to energy by attaching it to a device found in a computer called the Read-Write Arm. At one end of this arm there is a coil of copper wire in a magnetic housing. As the pendulum swung, it allowed the Read-Write arm to move back and forth inside the magnetic housing thus creating electricity or energy. Looking for a more efficient generator, a novel design of a Read-Write Arm was created by the experimenter. This too employed a coil of wire and magnetic housing but used more available and cheaper materials. Another device was created to take the research of this device a step further, and the design was replicated but this time it utilized easily available materials in developing countries like bamboo twine and rope. This design allows for people in these countries to build it on their own with less expensive materials and still attain the same goal as the original device, clean energy. All they would need is the capacitor to store the energy and the experimenter’s homemade Read-Write Arm. The framework for the device was made out of bamboo and connected with twine and rope. As the device moves the basket and the pendulum utilized the waves’ side to side movement and created energy.The first design was the one with the PVC pipes and the pendulum swinging freely above the surface of the water with the homemade generator (52.93mA) or Read-Write arm (43.98mA). The next was the bamboo device with the homemade generator (12.12 mA) or Read-Write arm (6.87 mA). Both the devices were most efficient when they had the homemade generator. This was because the arm was less restricted as it moved through the larger but more cost efficient design of the generator created by the experimenter. The purpose of creating and testing a device with materials primarily found in third world countries was fulfilled. An example of a great location for this device would be off the coast of Kerala in South India. Not only did the research allow for the experimenter to determine the most efficient combination of variables for the hydroelectric generator, but it also allows for further applications like desperately needed clean energy for third world countries. Wave energy is needed now more than ever for the rising demand of clean dependable and renewable energy.