Wednesday, February 22, 2017

Week 3

Although the design for the rack has already been approved I decided to work on another design for the rack so as to follow the schedule given to us by Eric. Also I'm working on getting the battery box ready. To not waste so much time I had to look for am already premade box that will hold all the components inside. Even though I found a box, I will look for one that is a bit more water proof. I also started working on the presentation that is due on Wednesday of next week.

Wednesday, February 15, 2017

Week 2

In this week we decided that each of us will make one design each of the solar panel rack. To make it easier to carry the rack, it will be made up of two pieces. The two sections will be held together by four grade 8 steel hex screws. Each of the screws has a tensile strength of 150,000 psi, a length of 1-3/4" and a coat of Zink-Aluminum. Each of those four screws will be pared with a high-strength steel flange nut. The nut is also a grade 8 and it is Zink-plated. I also included a set of different crews with washers that will hold in place the solar panel. Each of those screws are also grade 8 and 150,000 psi but are full threated and have a smaller length. The washers that will be pared up with those screws are No. 10 washers and are made of 316 stainless steel. The rack will be mounted on the same mounting bars as used in the previous year.

Top View

Bottom View

Mounting Bar


Grade 8 Screw Partially Threated

Grade/Class 8 Nut

Fully Threated Screw

316 Stainless Steel Washer

Wednesday, February 8, 2017

Week 1: 2/1 - 2/7

There are two solar panel circuits and each of them has a different DC to DC converter. The one I currently have does not have a functioning DC to DC converter and the previous year did not provide any information on who manufactured the circuit. The circuit does not have any writing or sign of were it come from so it has been difficult to find its data sheet. Since I could not find any information on it I decided to use a different circuit to covert the voltage to an operational range. The input voltage can range from 11.85V - 22V and the output voltage is 2.5V - 12.6V, well within the operational range.


Previous DC-DC

Some of the wires were not conducting, therefore, I had to connect them properly.

Although the components are now working properly, the weather has prevented me to test properly.

12.53V is the amount of voltage the DC to DC converter provides in order for the charge controller to function and charge the batter which is different from the ones used in the SolidWorks models. The SolidWorks models portrayed 6AA batteries and this batteries were the ones tested but the bogies are now using 4AA batteries which need to be tested soon. 

Wednesday, January 18, 2017

Battery Box 3 Animation


This design is also made of acrylic but the rails are made of metal and the wheels are plastic. I used 8 bolts and nuts to fasten the rails and 4 screws to fasten the 4 wheels. Each wheel had two different washers to go along with it. The handle also uses 2 screws but of different size compared to the wheels. The handle used #8 and the wheels #2. As you can see in the pictures, the rails are made so that the wheels stay in place. 

Open Battery Box 3
Complete Enclosure
Both Components
Bolt Rail 
Clearance of Wheels and Rail
Rail 1 

Rail 2

Rail Nut

Washer 1 Wheel 

Washer 2 Wheel
Wheel Assembly

Wheel Nut
Wheel Screw 

Thursday, January 12, 2017


This is the complete design of battery number 2. It will slide like a drawer and enclose all the components. The whole box will be of acrylic material except the screws and the handle. 



Wednesday, January 11, 2017


This week I worked on finishing design number 1 for the battery box. I was able to add all the needed bolts and hinges. I am still working on design number 2 and hopefully I finish it by the end of this week. The second design is similar to a pull out drawer of a fridge and the third design might be similar to a regular drawer.