Sustainable power supply

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First published 2013

This is to introduce Year 7 to a project which uses a sustainable power supply as an alternative to batteries, which can be harmful to the environment when disposed of. The power supply chosen is a super capacitor charged from a USB port, which represents the use of cutting edge technology to solve the problem of providing sustainable energy for a small scale electronic product. CAD/CAM is used extensively both in simulating and designing the circuit and in producing a professional, modern and commercial standard casing.

The project also considers how students make creative decisions regarding what the product would be and how it would work. This involves students selecting what input and output and devices they want to use and deciding what the theme of the project would be. For example, some students may decide to use a switch with an LED to create a torch or lighting system, some a buzzer for a doorbell or alarm and others some interesting original ideas. For example, one student has created a product that a cricket umpire could use to check if a cricket pitch was too wet to play. Students therefore have ownership of their work resulting in high levels of motivation.

Resources include

  • Teacher Notes
  • Introductory PowerPoint
  • Task Sheets
  • Chooser Charts
  • PCB layout
  • Software files

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