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Many plants contain pigments called anthocyanins which can change colour according to pH differences. It would be great to utilise this effect in printers to produce posters, photos and documents required for shorter term use. I suspect the longevity of these pigments are reduced as they are organic, but this may be overcome with use of a coating.
A common source for anthocyanins is from red cabbage. A solution formed from chopped red cabbage is used regularly as a home made pH indicator. Soaking this solution onto paper can make it into indicator paper.
A print cartridge and be modified to have a range of pH liquids and printing onto indicator paper can reproduce reds, purples, blues and greens.
Stencil and spray solutions could be another way produce posters.
Electrode potential method
An interesting effect which I have noticed via experiment is that colours can be induced at tips of electrodes when a current is passed across a indicator solution soak paper. What's happening here is electrolysis and positive and negative ions are migrating in solution. This makes the pH at the regions around the electrodes drift away from neutral (pH7).
Utilising this method, an pin could be scanned across the paper with changing potential at every point. Another method will be to address a pin array all at once.
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We've been visiting PocketSpacecraft to learn how to listen to satellites. Steph has also had the great pleasure of working with British Interplanetary Society's KickSAT project, so here is a summary of the learning - from a fresher's point of view. There are, of course, a wealth of experts and materials already which this guide will point to at the end.
Citizen Inventor is facilitating the formation of 2 teams to answer to answer to some challenge and have some fun!
Note: It is particularly exciting that the launch of KickSATs is scheduled to be on in the early hours (sometime after 3am) on the Sunday morning, a perfect break for the all nighters (don't worry, you are allow to sleep).
Citizen Inventor One: Steph, Nick, Laurence
Citizen Inventor Two: Luis, Michal, Mohammed
We should be flexible to rearrange ourselves between our own teams, so these teams are for the purpose of filling in administrative forms. (Analogy would be similar to group booking flights, airline gives each name a seat number but since we all know each other, we can always swap seats on the day!)
Specific challenge will be allocated to the team by Satellite Applications Catapult. It's most likely that we will find out on the day. The format is slightly unusual but I'm sure that helps to make everything happen in time for the balloon launch.
The catapult shall organised shuttles to go from Didcot Parkway station to Campus and Campus to station, if you are all travelling from London, train goes from Paddington and the train fare is around 20 GBP return (if one of you have network rail card, you can extend the discount to cover 4 people in total).
In order to see if we can travel together, perhaps it's worth adding details below:
Steph: will set off and be on site before most to help organising.
Who is travelling from London? Anyone from London want to pick a train and meetup before hand?
Wifi, mobile network:
If you are on O2, there's almost no network in the Harwell campus, so it's better to get organised esp if you are on O2 ;)
Food, Drinks and Shelter:
Food and drinks will be provided and should be plentiful, so I won't worry about it. Bring a sleeping bag for indoors, floor space will be available on campus.
Over 36 hours or so, we've rapidly prototyped to Mark 8 (we had 7b - minor versions too!) and we got steam at the end of it - oh yea! (and lots of melted parts). The trick to boiling water in this project is... deionised water!
What next? Stay tuned! Are you doing anything similar? Any experience with similar technologies? Do you know things about resistojets?